Windows and Wind Loads
There are many factors that will affect your choices of windows and doors for your new home or renovation. Weather is an element that affects every house. High wind speed is one of the most powerful forces a building will be subject to and can potentially cause substantial damage to a property. It is important then that the appropriate windows and doors are chosen to effectively withstand the pressures caused by strong winds.
Every site for every building in Australia should be assessed for wind requirements according to AS/NZS 1170.2 Wind Action or AS4055 Wind Loads for Housing. The Wind Load is a deciding factor in determining the type of window and door system that is most appropriate to structurally withstand the loads that are present on your site.
Calculating the correct wind loads for individual parts of buildings is a complex process and precise calculation of forces and must be carried out by a qualified person (builder, engineer or architect) during the design stage to ensure that all of the relevant forces are included to accurately determine the strength and structural integrity of all building elements, including windows and doors.
Wind speed and wind pressure are closely related, but they are not the same. It is important to utilise both wind speed and wind pressure in determining appropriate ultimate wind loads. Wind speed is the velocity of the air moving past stationery objects, measured in metres per second. Wind pressure is the force per unit area exerted over a structure by moving air. The pressure varies with air velocity and aerodynamic shapes. Different parts of the same building can experience different pressures. Pressure is measured in pascals (Pa).
Selecting the best windows and doors for your particular application will ensure better performance, protection and compliance. Speak to your builder or architect to determine the correct window choices for your home, and speak to your Sales Representative to find out which of our Southern Star Aluminium or Canterbury Timber products best suit your needs.
For more information on wind loads, visit the Australian Window Association’s website.