Windows & Wind Loads
The serious winds that battered Southern Victoria at the end of last month raise some very valid questions about window and door safety.
Wind Loads on buildings can be substantial and, in many cases, will act as one of the most significant forces that the building will be subjected to. Your windows need to be able to withstand these forces to keep you and your family safe.
“Do my windows have to pass a particular standard to be considered safe?”
Every building site in Australia should be assessed for wind requirements according to AS/NZS 1170.2 for Wind Action or AS4055 Wind Loads for Housing. The wind load is ultimately the deciding factor in determining which window or door system is the most appropriate to structurally withstand the potential wind load that will be present around your home.
“What is a wind load?”
Wind load is calculated partly by factoring in wind speed and wind pressure. Wind speed refers to the velocity that the air moves past stationary objects, while wind pressure refers to the force per unit area exerted over a structure by moving air.
Though they sound similar, wind pressure more relates to the interaction between air velocity and different aerodynamic shapes. For example, different parts of the same building will experience different wind pressures while receiving the same wind speed.
“How do I calculate the correct wind load for my home?”
Calculating the wind loads of your house is a complex and critical process and a precise calculation that needs to be carried out by a qualified professional. This is usually either a builder, engineer or architect, and is undertaken during the design phase to ensure that all relevant forces are included to accurately determine the strength of all elements - including your windows and doors.
“How do I ensure my windows are going to hold up during high-speed winds?”
Selecting the best windows and doors for any particular application will ensure you have a safer home with greater performance and compliance. Speak to your architect, engineer or builder to determine the correct window choices for your home and then chat to our team of experts to find out which Southern Star Aluminium or Canterbury Timber products best suit your home.
Get in touch with our team of experts here.
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