Detailing the Roof Air Barrier

Tuesday, April 7, 8:30am – 9:30am

Air barriers are systems of materials designed and constructed to control airflow between a conditioned space and an unconditioned space. The air barrier system is the primary air enclosure boundary that separates indoor (conditioned) air and outdoor (unconditioned) air. It is important to note that from an air barrier perspective, the building envelope includes all sides of the building, including the exterior (and sometimes interior) walls, the lowest-level floor(s), and the roof (or sometimes the upper level or the highest floor-level ceiling). Of particular concern is integration of air barrier systems into the building envelope in a way that windows, doors, curtainwalls, and other openings and penetrations are constructed to be airtight and/or weathertight. Roof-to-wall transitions are particularly important and often overlooked. One of the reasons this particular detail becomes a challenge is because not only is there a transition between an air barrier material that is specified on a wall to a membrane roofing system component (which also serves as an air barrier), but there are also different trades involved, and sequencing becomes important. This presentation will review this critical junction of where the wall meets the roof.

Learning Objectives:

  1. The speaker will review many of the common methods for proper detailing and installation of building air barrier components.
  2. Learn how and where to locate an air barrier within the roof assembly.
  3. Emphasis will be placed on the Air Barrier Association of America’s (ABAA’s) programs to facilitate developing, designing, and constructing better buildings.
  4. Review of conventional, unique, and new detailing and installation methods that work, as well as examples of details and installation methods that don’t work.
Level of content:

Brian Neely AIA, CDT, BECxP

Gale Associates, Inc., Weymouth, MA