With the recent passage and enforcement of facade inspection ordinances in cities throughout the United States, including Chicago, New York, Boston, and Detroit, the eed for proper and effective evaluation of building facades has become increasingly important. A proper understanding of the facade system being evaluated, as well as the mechanisms of deterioration, is critical to an effective and accurate evaluation.
As cladding systems age, damage resulting from environment forces can compromise both the structural and performance characteristics of the cladding system. A lack of proper maintenance or inappropriate maintenance can result in a failure of the cladding, posing a threat to both public safety and the building integrity.
This paper will provide a brief overview of the historical development of cladding systems. A discussion of failure mechanisms and representative examples will also be included. Finally, a systematic approach for the evaluation of facades will be given.
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