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Managing risk

image Weatherization Partners Ltd.’s vice president of risk management Corey Ball

DALLAS/FT WORTH - Moisture intrusion is a leading cause for construction litigation. Owners, developers and builders are always on the lookout for ways to reduce their risk. With the recent decrease of skilled labor, quality assurance on a project is in high demand. That’s why Weatherization Partners Ltd. implemented a risk management program last year.





    “As a distributor of DuPont™ Tyvek® building materials, we focus heavily on the building enclosure. Managing water and air intrusion in a building is incredibly important,” explains Corey Ball, the company’s vice president of risk management. “Our stance is we want to be involved with all of the different trades that interact with the building envelope. That’s why we spend time training and retraining installation crews so that we help our partners manage their risk. Building codes demand more energy efficient structures, so we want all the products that go into the wall assembly to be integrated correctly to make it perform accordingly. The reality is getting these products put on correctly is crucial to how well the wall system performs, and with different trades that are in contact with the weather barrier, we are proactive in our job site support.”
    The company–wide program caters to national production, multi-family developers and homebuilders. For large projects, Weatherization Partners has a process in place that begins at the architect level. It continues to installation training, to pre-construction of mock walls to discuss transitions and tricky details, to observation reports to support warranty registration.
    “There is an increase of varied options in the weather-resistant barrier market,” Ball says. “There are many different products and theories on how it’s done. Many decision makers become overwhelmed with that, and we help guide them and their installation crews with training and job site observations to assist that it’s installed right.”
    The three main causes for moisture-related issues stem from weatherization design, product failure and installation issues.
    “A building will only perform as well as all the components that are installed,” continues Ball. “So, when we are on a job site, we look over details and installation so that if water were to get behind the cladding, the wall is designed so that moisture can also find a way to get out and drain away. We are there to help reduce risk.
    “You can have a great install, a good quality control support from the contractor – but there also needs to be products with proven performance with proper detailing to minimize the potential of moisture damage,” Ball adds. “That’s where our company’s risk management strategy comes into play. When we are proactive on the job site with training crews, performing observations, talking with the contractors, registering paper-work for warranties, and just being a second pair of eyes, we are an asset in helping builders produce a durable wall that will help restrict the flow of water and air so that the building performs as efficiently as the architect and owner intend it to over a long period. That’s our goal.”
    Weatherization Partners Ltd. is a building material marketer/distributor. –mjm

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Carol Wiatrek meditor@constructionnews.net