Louvers, vents and related metal building accessories can serve up quite a few questions when it comes time to begin construction. How do you know which accessories you need — or how many to incorporate into a design? How can you make sure you’re placing them in a way that provides the airflow your steel buildings need?
Of course, the easiest way to ensure you have the right louvers, vents and accessories, installed the right way and in the right places is to consult with a metal building accessories pro. Around here, however, we’re big on arming our friends and colleagues with information to tackle such projects better informed.
Our ventilation experts have pulled together helpful insights surrounding your louvers, vents and steel buildings. Read on for info aimed at making it easier to ensure quality airflow inside your steel buildings, and placing your future projects on stronger footing.
Understanding Your Louvers and Vents
Louvers and vents are both crucial elements of your metal buildings’ ventilation efforts. They go about encouraging healthy airflow and comfortable spaces in different ways. And, although they can offer benefits in and of themselves, they work best when they work in tandem.
Here’s a high-level look at how louvers and vents carry out their work, and the options you have available.
Designed specifically for use with your pre-engineered metal building (PEMB) wall panels, louvers feature horizontal blades mounted into frames, and they largely resemble window blinds. Their job is to encourage healthy airflow within your steel buildings, making for healthier, more comfortable indoor environments.
Louvers carry out their work without electricity, and require little to no ongoing maintenance following installation. Metallic Products’ wall louvers are made of galvanized steel, and are both self-flashing and self-framing. In other words, they don’t require additional trim.
There are two main wall louver varieties offered:
Metallic Products Note: Interested in learning more about this tool of the trade? Our “Everything You Need to Know About the Metal Building Louver Vent” blog post offers tons of great information.
Unlike louvers, which reside within your metal building’s wall panels, vents are typically housed on rooftops. There are a wide range of metal building vent options to choose from, and your ideal pick will vary based on factors such as your structure’s build and age, the amount of manufacturing or production work you carry out on the regular — and even where your building is located. Let’s take a look at the various metal building vents available.
All Metallic Products metal building vents are available in a wide range of sizes, colors and finishes to ensure your finished product suits your individual structure, ventilation needs and roof pitch, too.
How Do You Know How Many Louvers, Vents and Accessories You Need?
If you’ve ever found yourself wondering exactly what your steel building’s ideal ratio of louvers and vents might be, rest assured you aren’t alone. Incorporating ventilation accessories into your steel buildings can be complicated.
Although there isn’t a magic number of louvers and vents that will keep your building properly ventilated, there are guidelines.
In general, for every 2,400 square feet of space, you’ll want to incorporate a 10-foot ridge ventilator. However, more ventilation might be required if your building has a lot of people working inside it, or if you carry out a high volume of production and manufacturing processes.
Remember, cross ventilation is also crucial. Experts recommend incorporating both roof vents and wall louvers into a metal building’s design in order to keep the air inside fresh — and to move stagnant, stale air and fumes out. As we mentioned, these ventilation accessories work better when they work together. (If you’re interested in diving deeper into how it all works, check out our post about hygrothermal dynamics.)
Our best advice is to consult with a steel building ventilation accessories provider at the start of your building project. In other words, building ventilation shouldn’t be an afterthought. By pulling a company into the mix early on, they’ll be able to offer insight regarding your project’s specific ventilation needs, the number of louvers, vents and related accessories you’ll need — and the easiest, most efficient way to help your metal buildings breathe.
If you have questions about any of the above, or if you’re interested in talking with our ventilation experts about an upcoming build, feel free to contact the Metallic Products team. We’re here, and we’re ready to help you find the airflow solutions that make sense for your steel buildings. We look forward to hearing from you!