Most of us in the glazing industry understand that to meet model energy codes’ increasingly stringent requirements and to achieve their intended energy savings, we need buildings with high-performance fenestration and façade systems. Focusing on the glass, we sometimes overlook the importance that wall cladding and connecting elements play in attaining high thermal performance.
Aluminum is a highly conductive metal. When it is used in fenestration, aluminum framing members need to be separated and insulated to avoid transferring heat from the building’s interior to the exterior. This same consideration should be given to the façade’s wall cladding, attachment clips and continuous insulation. If highly conductive elements are used, thermal bridging can occur and will compromise the building’s thermal effectiveness and energy savings.