Wind load calculations

Creating stronger, safer buildings together

To create stronger, safer buildings, architects, window manufacturers and fabricators must design for wind load from the start. Wind load is the force of wind creating pressure that glass must resist. A specific building’s wind load depends on its height, shape, relationship to surrounding buildings and terrain, as well as local wind speeds and the duration of gusts.

One key factor in calculating wind load is center deflection. Excessive center deflection can result in edge pull out, distortion of reflected images and potential contact between the glass and interior components, such as room dividers and window blinds. Wind load calculations are even more complex with insulated glass, requiring a computer-assisted wind load analysis to adequately consider the variables, including:

  • Air space expansion and contraction caused by the effects of changing temperatures
  • Barometric pressure, altitude and differences in weathering in the #1 and #2 surfaces; asymmetrical loading (lites of varying thickness)
  • Load-sharing other than 50-50
  • Edge condition (free or fixed)
  • Variation in sight line or air space width
  • Thermal stress

Carefully weigh these variables because they can dramatically alter the data taken from a standard wind load chart. For projects built in the United States, Guardian follows the current ASTM E 1300 “Standard Practice for Determining the Minimum Thickness and Type of Glass Required to Resist a Specified Load.” This information represents in-service glass and supersedes the traditional straight-line graph as well as other wind load charts, and may differ for other countries.

Glass Analytics™ software suite

Evaluate the environmental performance of your building design, consider the wind load or see what your glass and coating choice will look like. Guardian Glass Analytics can help enhance the performance of your building.