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Business Advice5 min

The Importance Of Vapor Permeability In Building Envelopes

Since 1898, the American Society for Testing and Materials (now called ASTM International) has developed technical standards for a wide variety of building materials. They test for things like burn resistance. For weather-resistant barriers (WRBs), ASTM has developed rigorous tests for water resistance and water penetration, plus an air barrier assembly test. But an equally important test is ASTM E96, which measures water vapor permeability over a 24-hour period.

Even after exterior cladding goes up, walls can get wet. Small amounts of moisture in the wall turn to gas (water vapor) that needs to escape. If walls can't dry out thoroughly, the home is susceptible to mold and rot.

The term vapor permeability (sometimes called "breathability") refers to a material's ability to let water vapor pass through it. ASTM E96 measures this in units called "perms" - and today's building codes require WRBs to provide 5 perms or higher.

The Difference Between House Wrap and WRB

Since the 1960s, many builders have relied on plastic house wraps to achieve superior vapor permeability. But house wraps are applied after traditional sheathing is installed and approved by code officials. Then a crew has to return to wrap and tape the whole house.

In contrast, a product like new LP WeatherLogic Air & Water Barrier requires fewer steps. The sheathing and weather-protective layer are combined in a single panel that can be installed just like regular sheathing. The panel seams are then securely taped with an advanced acrylic tape that features one of today’s highest quality adhesives. And because the vapor-permeable overlay is permanently integrated into the panel, it won’t tear or blow away.

One of the best ways to get a tight building envelope is to use a structural panel like LP WeatherLogic barrier where the sheathing and vapor-permeable layer are tightly bonded during the manufacturing process. It's a breakthrough that involves fewer steps and less waiting than using house wrap.

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Business Advice4 min

How To Protect Builds Against Rainy Climates

While many builders resort to flexible timing and weather contingency clauses to successfully navigate wet weather construction, they are still often at the mercy of the materials they use. This is why, at LP Building Solutions, we've been long committed to engineering building materials that stand up specifically to moisture-related challenges.

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Business Advice5 min
Defend Your Build™ In Time For Storm Seasons

Managing inclement weather in construction and avoiding costly delays in project timelines are some of the most important challenges faced by builders today.

Business Advice5 min
What Extra Durability and Resiliency Steps Should You Take in a Hot Climate?

According to recent NASA reports, global temperatures have been rising and ice sheets have been melting-both of which may be contributing factors to changing weather patterns. With these changes, resilient construction is increasingly important as builders are seeking extra durability within their builds.

Business Advice6 min
Simplifying Sustainability: Getting to Know LEED and WELL Certifications

LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) certification and the WELL Building Standard® are particularly popular among architects. Let's get to know how they impact the day-to-day design process and see how LP products fit into these environmental standards.