How to calculate your Wind, Snow, Tornado and Seismic risk assessment and apply that information to better home building.

FAQ#: 458 published 3-5-2022

ATC Hazards by Location website to run your Wind, Snow, Tornado and Seismic risk assessment and to help you build a better home.

Example location in Louisiana.

Know what you are building. If you are the homeowner be sure to look at your wind zone and then the IRC 2015 or newer for your fastener schedule. The Fastener Schedule under Wall Construction TABLE R602.3(1) FASTENING SCHEDULE will give you just what to look for.

Example, if you see boxes of nails on the ground that show a nail size of 3" x 0.120" you can safely check the fastening schedule table to see if a 0.120" diameter nail is considered the minimum size. (Fasteners are listed as minimum sizes)

You will find builders in high wind zones using 3" x 0.131" nails and following the nailing schedule for the number of nails to use for different structural materials. For some materials their are alternate fasteners.

Ask your builder to validate code with actual material. It's important because it's your home and it's your wind zone that you need to live in during the storm.

Call a local supplier, ask for a 3" or 2.5" x 0.131" ring shank galvanized nail to attach wood structural panels. You might hear one or both of the following "I don't see it in 0.131" diameter but have it in 0.120", that's what everyone uses here." "Inspectors, they don't even check nails so don't worry about it."

It's really not a matter of what everyone on your block is using, it's a matter of if you want to question years of experience that goes into our IRC codes and take the design and build engineering responsibility into your own hands.

Be safe, build safe, understand what are minimum standards so you can build better than minimum.

 

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