Parapets are one of the most exposed elements of a building, found at not only the front of a wall structure, but also the top and back as well. Parapets often bear the force of high winds, torrential rain, and extreme temperature conditions. In addition, parapets are prone to an increased amount of movement, calling for stronger support.
Before you decide that steel studs are the best solution for parapet support, you may want to think twice. Here are several reasons why steel studs aren’t the best answer, and why masonry may be the better option for masonry restoration in MA and beyond.
Compared to masonry materials, steel studs increase the exposure to moisture and eventually corrosion. One of the most common sources of moisture is from roofing systems, which can be prone to failure and leak as time goes on. Utilizing masonry materials instead of steel studs can create a stronger seal and protection from moisture, and maintain a building’s structure stronger for a longer duration.
While a certain amount of flexibility is beneficial, too much of a good thing can also be detrimental. Steel studs have a higher amount of flexibility than masonry, which puts a building at risk for cracking and moisture penetration. Masonry materials offer greater strength and stability than steel studs, with a lower risk of excessive cracking in a building’s masonry veneer.
As steel is a major conductor of heat, using steel studs in a building’s structure creates an environment that is more prone to greater temperature fluctuations. When steel studs run from the floor below and up past the roof, the risk of condensation increases, and more moisture penetration can occur. This can cause unwanted deterioration, cracking, and damage, all of which can be mitigated with the use of masonry material support.
For more information regarding masonry restoration in MA and the surrounding area, contact Abbot Building Restoration at 617-445-0274.