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How Metal Buildings Withstand Extreme Weather Conditions

By: Chris Egg, Viking Steel Structures

You may have heard this over & over again. Metal buildings are resilient to extreme weather. The reason lies in the strength of the raw materials – steel. It is one of the most robust materials used on earth in construction. Galvanised steel is coated with zinc to prevent rusting. What’s more, they can be designed to tolerate extreme climate events like hurricanes or tornados. In case there are minor damages, it can be repaired or rebuilt easily & faster. So, a question that might arise in your head is, what makes metal buildings so strong that they can withstand extreme weather conditions? Let’s see them one by one.

Metal is Ductile

Aluminium sliding
Aluminium sliding

It is one of the properties of metal to stretch and bend without breaking. This feature makes metal structures ideal for seismic-prone regions and high-wind areas. Ductility ensures that metal can withstand a lot of pressure and force without any damage.

Metal is Strong

Hardboard cladding
Hardboard cladding

Metal is extremely strong compared to wood or resin. What makes it stronger is its strength-to-weight ratio. For example, strength to weight ratio for stainless steel is ~63.

Metal is Non-Combustible

Metal is not a flammable substance. The melting point of carbon steel is 2597-2800o F; stainless steel is 2500- 2785o F. Simply put, a metal building will not catch or spread fire quickly. So, it is a safer option to protect your assets from getting damaged.

How Resilient is A Metal Building?

Metal Building Vs. Snow

With options like a vertical roof, the snow will slide off easily due to gravity. Also, metal buildings can be designed to withstand heavy snow loads of up to 40 pounds per square foot. Depending on your area, your metal roof can be angled to slide off all the snow on its own. You can reinforce metal buildings’ roofs for additional strength if you live in a heavy snowfall area.

Metal Building Vs. Rain

Metals do not absorb water. Moreover, if you have a vertical roof, water will slide off quickly without getting logged on the roof. Additionally, you can install a gutter that will redirect the water flow to a drainage area keeping your metal building dry.

Metal Building Vs. Wind

Metal structures can be designed to withstand wind ratings of 120 to 170 miles per hour. You can get wind-certified buildings from your dealer. If you live in highly windy states like Alabama, Texas, Florida, or others, ensure that you chat with your metal supplier before buying your steel building. Usually, the metal structure has to meet the local building codes and guidelines before being installed on the site. It would be best to secure a permit before beginning the construction work. You must attach a blueprint of your building’s design to this permit.

What about the Building Façades?

Façades are the exterior appearance of the building that gives it an aesthetic look. Of course, façades would suffer damage in case of extreme weather events. But the good thing is they can be repaired or replaced as they do not bear main structural support.

Some examples of building façades:

Natural stone

They are durable, unique, and add aesthetic to your building. You can combine them with others

Brick

Stucco cladding
Stucco cladding

 

You must have seen brick used as a décor to enhance buildings’ external appearance. It adds texture to the wall. You can get it in various colours, blends, and textures.

Hardboard

These are horizontal panels made of paper and lamination. They may look like a wooden panel except for low cost and stability.

Stucco

It is a mixture of sand, cement, lime & water. You can apply various coats to get the desired look. You can add pigment in the raw mix to lessen the maintenance & repainting.

Corrugated Steel Panels

Corrugated Steel Panels
Corrugated Steel Panels

Steel panels are the best choice if you are looking for a modern chic industrial-style home. Long lasting, easy installation, and affordable, what else do you need? It comes in various colour options.

Aluminium Sliding

Moisture problem – check; rusting problem – check; lightweight – check! It comes in various sizes & styles and looks great with other façades.

Artificial Stone

Artificial or faux stone looks like stone, except they are lightweight. These are low-density foam and generally waterproof.

Engineered Lap Sliding

Think of it as an advanced version of a hardboard. These are modern and have smooth finishing. The majority of them are moisture proof & rot-proof. You can choose the colour of your choice as well.

Metal Cladding

Concrete cladding
Concrete cladding

From a range of metals like aluminium, copper, zinc, steel, etc., you can design a façade of your choice. Aluminium façades are moisture-proof, lightweight, low maintenance & best option for coastal homes.

Ceramic Cladding

It is a sustainable material made of clay. It gives fire and heat protection. It blocks external noise.

Concrete Cladding

Concrete is durable, cheap, and can be customised for desired shape and texture.

3D Cladding

3D cladding
3D cladding

It is the most popular and visually appealing. As the name suggests, it gives a 3D appearance to the building wall.

In A Nutshell

Metal building is the best choice for you if you live in a place that experiences heavy rainfall, snowfall, hail, storms, tornado, or hurricane. So, you can boldly go for it. Having to rebuild the entire structure from scratch can be a financial pain. So, why go through it? Get a high-quality steel building from a reputed manufacturer & rest assured that your possessions are safe.

Chris Egg, Viking Steel Structures

Business Development & Marketing Manager

Chris Egg is a blogger and marketing specialist at Viking Steel Structures. He has been writing about metal buildings for over 5 years and has a deep understanding of the industry. Chris is passionate about helping people find the right metal building for their needs and loves sharing his knowledge with others. He is also a frequent contributor to the Viking Steel Structures blog, where he writes about a variety of topics related to metal buildings, including design, construction, financing, and maintenance.

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