19 June

How is a tent fly like a rainscreen?

Rainscreen wall systems are being specified more regularly because they control moisture in exterior walls, reducing the potential for water damage. They consist of the exterior cladding, ventilation/air space/drainage plane, insulation, air and water resistive barrier and the buildings structure.  But how do they work?

A tent fly is a simple rainscreen. The fly keeps rain out because the frame or poles from the tent keeps the fly separate from the tent fabric.  Rainscreens for buildings work in the same way. The exterior cladding sits away from the building structure through the use of furring strips or another specific rainscreen product.  Rainscreen performance relies on a space between the cladding that allows moisture that may pass by the cladding to easily drain away from the building.  This space within the wall assembly provides an avenue in which air may flow, assisting in the evaporation of residual moisture through ventilation.    

Insulation and the air and water resistive barrier ensure that the rainscreen wall system will perform long-term.  The insulation reduces the heat flow in and out of a building, prevents the likelihood of condensation, and when installed continuously over the air and water resistive barrier, it significantly increases the building’s energy efficiency.  The air and water resistive barrier is the most critical component of the system since any moisture that passes the exterior cladding must be stopped by the air and water resistive barrier. 

Carlisle Coatings & Waterproofing is positioned perfectly to support rainscreen wall system designs through our air and vapor barrier products and our R2+ polyiso insulation.  Please visit the Air and Vapor Barrier and Wall System sections of our website www.carlisleccw.com to learn more about these products. 

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