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Cladding Attachment Over Thick Exterior Sheathing

The addition of insulation to the exterior of buildings is an effective means of increasing the thermal resistance of both wood framed walls as well as mass masonry wall assemblies. For thick layers of exterior insulation (levels greater than 1.5 inches), the use of wood furring strips attached through the insulation back to the structure has been used by many contractors and designers as a means to provide a convenient cladding attachment location. The research presented in this report is intended to help develop a better understanding of the system mechanics involved and the potential for environmental exposure induced movement between the furring strip and the framing. In this Building America project, Building Science Corporation address the following research questions: 1. What are the relative roles of the mechanisms and the magnitudes of the force that influence the vertical displacement resistance of the system? 2. Can the capacity at a specified deflection be reliably calculated using mechanics based equations? 3. What are the impacts of environmental exposure on the vertical displacement of furring strips attached directly through insulation back to a wood structure?