Posted April 16, 2014 by Christy Serafini
When looking for a sturdy, durable building siding and enclosure material, metal panels are hard to beat. Modern metal panel systems offer many features that make them an ideal choice for almost any large commercial structure. The following are a few things architects and contractors should be aware of when incorporating metal panels into a design or construction project.
Strength and Flexibility
The purpose of any siding is to protect the structure that it encloses. The unique properties of metal allow it to offer superior protection while simultaneously remaining flexible enough for use on buildings of all sizes. Large, high-rise buildings are subjected to unique stresses and loads that aren’t a factor for structures of only a few stories. All large buildings must be designed to move slightly in response to wind, and metal panel systems are flexible enough to accommodate this movement without cracking, splitting or tearing off.
Green building is one of the latest trends in construction, and architectural metal panels are an excellent material to use when environmental considerations are important. Almost every manufacturer of metal panels includes at least a portion of recycled material in the panels they produce, and some utilize a majority of recycled content in their products. Exterior metal cladding also serves to reflect a portion of direct sunlight and can be used in siding systems that create an insulating layer between the exterior panel and the wall of the building for the purpose of reducing energy loss.
Ease of Installation
Few siding products are as easy to install as metal panel systems. Panel manufacturers have taken care of all the hard work formerly associated with installing metal panels by designing straightforward fastening systems that allow the panels to go up quickly. In addition, although metal is denser than most other siding materials, it takes less of it to provide the protection a structure needs. This means that metal siding is generally lighter in weight than other siding materials and is easier to handle during transportation and installation. The panels will also arrive at a jobsite pre-finished to project specifications, so no additional painting, coating or finishing is required before or after installation.
Another aspect of metal panels that many designers and building owners consider to be of paramount importance is the way that they look. Metal panels can be manufactured and finished in myriad ways that allow them to be used on almost any style of architecture. If a designer is looking to create a modern, high-tech superstructure with a utilitarian feel, architectural metal panels are a perfect fit. If the building is intended to convey an eclectic, whimsical look, metal panels coated in a variety of colors and patterns can also be used to create the desired effect. Metal can be effectively combined with other materials and shaped into unusual configurations that can’t be achieved with less flexible materials.
The team at Wade Architectural Systems has supplied all types of architectural metal to contractors since 1988. We’re always glad to discuss the products we supply with architects and commercial construction professionals who ply their trades in Oklahoma and Texas. If you’d like to learn more about the products we carry, contact us through our website or by phone today. Our staff will give you information on recent projects completed using metal panels that we have supplied, show you samples of various panel types and provide design specifications that you can keep in mind when planning upcoming projects.