Tag Archives: post rot

Price Per Square Foot, Proper Post Treatment, and XPS

This week the Pole Barn Guru answers questions about the price per square foot for a hangar, the proper post treatment for in ground use, and use of XPS insulation between steel and wall posts.

DEAR POLE BARN GURU: What is the approximate price per square foot for a 62 x 130 t hangar? KENNETH in PUEBLO WEST

DEAR KENNETH: Thank you for your interest in a new Hansen Pole Building. Your question is rather like asking what is an approximate price for a new car – what type of car?

A Hansen Pole Buildings’ Designer has been attempting to reach out to you to get more specifics on what you have in mind in order to get even a close price range for you.

Will this be a T hangar https://www.hansenpolebuildings.com/2013/09/airplane-t-hangar/ or a nested T? https://www.hansenpolebuildings.com/2013/09/nested-t-hangar/

What opening widths and heights will you require? Hangar doors can impact building height (and price) greatly. Sliding doors are a less expensive design solution than bi-fold or one-piece hydraulic doors, however present their own unique challenges.

 

DEAR POLE BARN GURU: I have built post frame buildings on and off for 43 years. What is the industry doing to correct the problem of the post rotting off at ground line on post frame buildings? I have attempted to repair buildings in this condition that are settling into the ground. MATT in CLAREMORE

DEAR MATT: In my humble opinion, this could be resolved by having clear markings on Pressure Preservative Treated wood to not leave any doubt as to what proper use is. I have stomped my feet on this very issue for years: https://www.hansenpolebuildings.com/2014/05/building-code-3/.

Over my 40 year post frame building career I have yet to see a documented case of a properly pressure preservative treated column rotting off.

 

DEAR POLE BAN GURU: Good Afternoon .

I have been exploring building a post frame home. Is using a combination of XPS and the external sheathing (~2.0 to 2.5″) and bat insulation in the bays (~R19-R26) possible. These two articles seem to me that the dew point would move inside the XPS during the MN winters and make the wall assembly much more durable. Do you think this might be correct? If so, would Post Frame construction easily adapt to this type of assembly?

https://www.buildingscience.com/documents/digests/bsd-controlling-cold-weather-condensation-using-insulation

https://www.buildingscience.com/documents/bareports/ba-1301-guidance-taped-sheathing-drainage-planes/view

TIM in ST. PAUL

DEAR TIM: Designed right, post frame homes are wonderful. My lovely bride and I live in an 8000 square foot post frame shouse (shop/house) not too far distant from you (we are roughly 200 miles due West).

Post frame buildings work structurally very similar to why jet airlines hold together – their ‘skin’ is holding everything together. With post frame, wind loads are transferred from building to ground through this steel roofing and siding skin.

When non-structural insulation boards (XPS) are inserted between framing and steel siding, screws holding steel would have to be exceedingly long. Screw shanks through XPS sheathing would deform (bend) under extreme wind events, causing a reduction in abilities to properly transmit loads. This could contribute to premature building system failure.

An easier solution would be to use two inches of closed cell spray foam insulation between wall girts on steel siding interior surface. This would accomplish a similar end result, without a compromise in building strength.

 

Sliding Door Size, Floor Heat & Post Rot, and Trimming an Addition

Today’s Pole Barn Guru discusses Sliding Door Size, Floor Heat & Post Rot, and Trimming an Addition.

DEAR POLE BARN GURU: I have a shed in Holman Wisconsin with 12 ft high by 12 ft wide doors on it. The header is 13-6 can 13 ft high by 12 wide sliding door b installed? JEFF in HOLMAN

14-0620 Monitor BarnDEAR JEFF: Assuming standard post frame building construction where top of concrete slab is 3-1/2″ above bottom of pressure preservative treated splash plank. From bottom of splash plank to bottom of sliding door header would need to be 13′ 4-3/4″ to allow for a 13 foot tall sliding door.

 

 

DEAR POLE BARN GURU: In floor heat and poll life. Would higher temps from in floor heat reduce the life span of treatment and also improve the environment for decay organisms? VINCENT in CHAFFEE

DEAR VINCENT: As pressure treatment chemicals bond to wood at a cellular level, unless your floor heat was hot enough to cause combustion, it is highly unlikely lifespan would be reduced.

Growth of wood-rotting fungi is affected by temperature similar to growth of ordinary green plants. It is faster in warm weather than in cold. There are variations in response to temperature, and for each species there is an optimum at which growth is most rapid. Forest Products Laboratories tests and others on a number of species of fungi common in Canada indicate temperature conditions for optimum growth range from 65 to 95°F. All fungi show little or no growth at freezing temperatures or slightly above, but most wood rotting fungi are not killed by temperatures well below freezing point. They can withstand winter’s cold in a dormant state and can recommence active growth when temperatures increase again if other conditions are right.

Growth becomes less rapid as temperatures are increased above 95°F and ceases for most fungi at temperatures slightly in excess of 100°F. Prolonged exposure to temperatures slightly above maximum for growth, or even short exposure to temperatures much above maximum, can kill fungus completely. Actual death point is influenced by temperature, length of time and moisture content.

In theory, this means your heated floor could actually be responsible for killing decay organisms.

 

DEAR POLE BARN GURU: Hey I found you thru Hansen Buildings and had a question you might be able to answer just built a 24 x 16 pole barn and on the left and right added sheds but only half the building length what do I do with my gable trim that ends in the eave on the roof side of it just don’t know how to end it? JEREMY in SILETZ

DEAR JEREMY: Run gable (rake) trim up to main building roof steel edge, with a factory (uncut by you) end towards main roof. Use Emseal® (https://www.hansenpolebuildings.com/2016/03/emseal-self-expanding-sealant-tape-closures/) between top edge of trim and underlying roofing to create a tight water seal.

 

 

Multi-Story Pole Barns, Rubber Coatings on Posts, and Heavy Snow Loads

Today’s Pole Barn Guru answers questions about multi-story pole barns, rubber coatings on  posts, and building for heavy snow loads.

DEAR POLE BARN GURU: I am looking into a multi-story pole barn with the top story being a home. I would need outside assess to the top story also. Do you build the pole barn or just send the materials. DEBBY in OJAI


DEAR DEBBY: We provide multi-story post frame (pole barn) building homes on a regular basis. Having outside access to your second floor is highly doable. We are not contractors in any state, we provide complete custom designs, third-party engineer sealed, all materials delivered to your site as well as complete construction assembly instructions for an average individual to successfully erect their on beautiful home.

 

DEAR POLE BARN GURU: Is there an issue with rubber coating a post with liquid rubber for first 6 feet of the pole (or coating the whole post even) and pouring concrete and slab together around the posts in pier-slab foundation style? ROB in JACKSON

DEAR ROB: As long as your proposed product is nonflammable and has no toxic off gassing then it should not prove to be an issue other than time and expense to protect a product having an ability already to outlast any of us. You should read: https://www.hansenpolebuildings.com/2017/12/will-poles-rot-off/. It would also behoove you to have your building’s engineer of record sign off on using your product of choice.

 

DEAR POLE BARN GURU: We are in an area of 120 – 150 snow load in the mountains of MT and want to error on the 150 load side when building our shed. The shed plan is 30×70 (2 RV doors) on the 30 side) with a 15×70 enclosed lean to (car garage door on the 15 side) that will have a car garage, workshop and storage room. Can we do a pole building with this size of shed and snow load or do we have to go stick built? KIM in BIGFORK

DEAR KIM: Post frame construction lends itself to high snow load requirements much better than stick built. We just finished designs for a building is Truckee California where snow load is 390 psf.

 

 

Roof Loads for Solar Panels, A “Square” Building, and Post Rot

This week the Pole Barn Guru answers questions about installing solar panels on the roof, the “squaring” of a building, and rotting of posts.

DEAR POLE BARN GURU: Will a Pole Barn roof be able to hold solar panels? CARMEN in ORANGEVALE

DEAR CARMEN: We can have your new post frame building engineered to support any amount of snow load, as well as any weight of solar panels, or other materials or systems you might want to either place upon, in, or hang from the roof system, and of course the building frame which supports it.

 

DEAR POLE BARN GURU: We purchased our home and it has an unfinished pole barn. I was told it was stopped due to not being square by the township. What I have found is it is 18x48x14ft tall. I would like to add on to it and finish it which would require a 12×48 lean to and the rest of the materials to finish the building is this something you would consider quoting? JAMES in CEDAR SPRINGS

DEAR JAMES: Our hope will be “square by the township” merely means prior owner neglected to acquire needed permits (rather than building as constructed happens to be out of square). Before moving forward you should be visiting your township planning and building departments to determine exactly what issues exist. It could be your unfinished pole barn has been started in a disallowed portion of your property.

Once you have cleared things up with your officials, we could provide structural plans and materials for an attached lean to (again providing it meets with your Planning Department’s requirements).

 

DEAR POLE BARN GURU: One of my clients sent me this reply, can you sent me a link or information to answer his question: “As I have researched pole barns many folks talk about not setting the pole in concrete due to rot from water?”

Thanks. GREGG (a Hansen Pole Buildings’ Designer)

DEAR GREGG: I would sure like to see scientific proof from these “many folks”. Properly pressure preservative treated columns rotting from any cause would be just another old wives’ tale (no offense meant to old wives).

Another urban myth debunked here:

https://www.hansenpolebuildings.com/2018/07/isolating-pole-barn-poles-from-concrete-slabs/

 

 

Sliding Doors, Roofing Tar on Posts? and Condenstop!

Sliding Doors, Roofing Tar on Posts? and Condenstop!

DEAR POLE BARN GURU: I have an arena with 12×12 openings at each end. I want to find a rolling door solution. I would like to have 6.5” doors that open left and right. I’m also interested in finding a door solution that instead of tan metal (matching my building) I find translucent panels.

I can upload photos in a few days when I return to the farm.

Is this something you can help with?

Thanks JASON in CENTRAL POINT

building problemsDEAR JASON: If yours is typical post frame (pole) building construction, your opening probably measures 12 feet from center of column to center of column, in which case you would be looking at needing a 12 foot width split sliding door. This would give you two door leafs just over six feet in width, enough to cover the opening, provide an overlap on each side and be able to be covered with two three foot widths of steel siding.

You should be looking at a door system which has all steel girts (horizontals) and verticals, preferably pre-painted. While translucent (polycarbonate) panels could be used, I would typically not recommend them due to their not having a resistance to wracking.

In our case, Hansen Pole Buildings only provides sliding door components with the investment into a complete engineered post frame building kit package. We typically would recommend you pay a visit to the ProDesk at your local The Home Depot to acquire the parts you will need.

 

DEAR POLE BARN GURU: Enjoy reading your blog. I will be building in thick wet clay and am worried about post rot due to the amount of moisture. Will painting the entirety of the buried portion of treated pole in roofing tar help preserve the wood? TIM in LEXINGTON

DEAR TIM: Thank you for your kind words, I hope to be both entertaining and informative. Will painting the entirety of the buried portion of a treated pole in roofing tar help preserve the wood? Well, it might, although I have found no studies which would confirm the ability. I did find an interesting article in Scientific American, which may shoot down the idea: https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/coal-tar-and-its-products-as-preser/.

The reality of the situation is, a properly pressure preservative treated column is going to outlast all of us, and probably our grandchildren. This article should be of interest: https://www.hansenpolebuildings.com/2017/12/will-poles-rot-off/.

 

DEAR POLE BARN GURU: Hello guru. I bought a bunch of 1/2x4x8 sheets of insulation to put on my new 40×60 barn roof under the steel and on top of purlins .Planned on taping all seams for a moisture barrier. It’s not the really dense foam more of a bead style with a silver back on one side plastic on the other so it’s a little bit squishy. After thinking about it what worries me is that after time it may cause the barn screws seal to loosen up. If the foam lowers it could cause the steel to drop a bit. Than could create a leak under the rubber washer. Or do you think it will work ok? Should I just use Tyvek instead on the purlins? What is your opinion Guru? ABE in WAYLAND

DEAR ABE: Do not use this insulation as you have intended, it will cause you nothing but grief. Not only will your post frame barn roof leak, but the diaphragm strength of your roof steel will be severely compromised, which could lead to a catastrophic failure. Tyvek and other building wraps are not condensation control barriers, they are moisture barriers. There are several possibilities – invest in roof steel with Condenstop or Dripstop preapplied, use a radiant reflective barrier between the purlins and roofing, or spray closed cell foam on after the roof is installed.