Durability of Paint/Coatings on the Exterior of Building Enclosures
presented by Kevin Knight, Retro-Specs, LTD
Wednesday, May 21, 10:45 AM - 11:15 AM
Session: Good Practice in the Use of High Performance Coatings

In construction, a building enclosure has to provide the environmental separation between the conditioned, occupied space and the climate where the building is located. It has to provide a safe and healthy environment for the occupants, support the owner's intended use, and last for the anticipated service life. Paint/coatings utilized on the exterior of a building enclosure are no longer being used purely for their aesthetics. Control of the flow of air and of liquid water and vapor are a part of the function that many paint/coating systems must now manage. Durability is the ability to endure, and the paint/coating service life must be addressed under the load and impact of environmental exposure at a local level. This paper will discuss the damage mechanisms at both the macro and micro levels of the building enclosure. It will compare the service life of the building to the paint/coatings service life, and will consider the impact on the building and occupants when paint/coatings lose aesthetics, and lose the ability to control the requirements for environmental separation.

Learning Objectives:

Understand the main purposes of a building enclosure.

Understand how exterior paint/coatings used as air barriers contribute to the performance of the building enclosure.

Understand how the exposure environment in which the coating operates affects a coating’s durability and functionality.

Understand the impacts of a coating’s loss of durability on building enclosure performance.

Speaker Bio:

Kevin D. Knight is president and senior technical advisor of RetroSpecs Consultants Ltd. He has headed the company since 1985, and has more than 20 years of experience in building envelope technology, in the field, as a researcher, and as a trainer. He has extensive experience in the development of building envelope testing and commissioning protocols, and has been involved in numerous commercial construction projects in a variety of roles including design concept and plan and specification review, senior advisor, senior consultant, project manager, diagnostic review, and troubleshooting. Knight is a frequent lecturer on building-envelope science and exterior envelope commissioning, inspection and testing, and has published many articles in design and trade journals.