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Windstorm

Build homes to withstand high winds

Meet hurricane wind codes, eliminate blocking at horizontal joints and reduce or eliminate metal hardware. That easily translates into savings of up to $1,000 or more per home in construction material, labor and waste. There are a lot of high wind events across the country, and Windstorm® offers significant advantages in all areas.

Why use Windstorm Wall Sheathing?

The method Windstorm utilizes has been in the building codes as far back as the SSTD 10-99 and is still in the codes in effect today. Windstorm offers a wealth of benefits:

  • Eliminate blocking
  • Eliminating the blocking improves the performance of your wall insulation by reducing thermal bridging
  • Reduces or eliminates metal hardware and blocking material
  • Provides a continuous load path with a design professional’s fastener schedule
  • Reduces labor and construction time with less handling, cutting and faster installation
  • Reduces waste with less cutting and fewer chances for errors
  • Cuts air leakage up to 60% when compared to using 4x8s
  • Eliminates horizontal joints mid wall or at the top plates
  • All seams fall on framing members
  • Provides full open-wall cavities that allow for faster and better insulation
  • Eliminates the gable end hinge point when Windstorm extends beyond the bottom chord

Windstorm lengths are available from 97 1/8″ up to 145 1/8″ in 7/16 and 15/32 thickness categories. More information is available in the installation section below. Panels are sized for spacing.

Windstorm – The Perfect Wall sheathing Partner for Raised Heel Trusses.

  • Testing was completed using Windstorm sheathing and up to 24″ raised heel truss systems (see APA Product Report PR-N133 for details).
  • Lengths cover from the wall bottom plate up to the underside of the top chord with one Windstorm structural sheathing panel.
  • Roof hurricane clips may be eliminated in most areas of the country because Windstorm connects the roof system to the wall system and prevents lift and roll over.
  • Eliminates the hinge point at the truss and top plate connection and eliminates the blocking.
  • Energy codes allow lower R-value attic insulation in certain climate zones if uncompressed insulation extends to the outside edge of the top plate. Raised heel trusses let that happen easily.

Want More? Check out the video

Stucco Exterior Finish

If Stucco is the exterior finish siding please refer to the APA (The Engineered Wood Assoc) Q370 for structural sheathing thickness and grade recommendations. You should also refer to applicable local building codes for proper stucco installation over OSB or plywood sheathing.

  • Sizes / Lengths:
    97 1/8, 109-1/8, 113 ½, 121 1/8, 124 ¾, 132, 133 1/8, 145 1/8
  • Thickness:
    7/16 and 15/32
  • Edge Seal Color:
    Turquoise
  • Warranty:
    25 Year Limited Warranty
Have any questions regarding this product?
Contact us today.

WINDSTORM Testimonial 7

Specifying Windstorm simplifies the engineering design calculation time that can be better spent on more critical aspects of the typical job. A common problem I encounter with stud to plate connectors occurs at the inspection process when correction of the stud plate tie installation requires significant reconstruction. Windstorm sheathing and nail spacing alone reduces the errors. Windstorm performs without the necessity of stud plate ties, as the portion of the “Continuous Loud Path” from the top to bottom of the walls. It is advantageous to the builder to save time and money by eliminating the need for stud plate ties.

Thomas E. Beitelman, M.S. P.E. S.I.
Tallahassee, Florida / Sound Structures Engineering
  • Product Documents

  • CAD DRAWINGS

    The CAD files below are in DWG format. To download, right-click the links and choose Save Target As. (Mac users should choose Save Linked File As.)

    Attention: Structure detail & nailing schedule to be established by design professional.

  • Case Study

    Case Study: Windstorm Wall Sheathing on Multi-Family Project Reduces Air Leakage and Construction Costs.

    Read how a New Jersey builder saved over $70,000 using Windstorm in a high wind zone project while facing a tight schedule and strict building codes.

    Click here to view the full case study

  • FAQ

    1. Does Windstorm eliminate all hardware for shear walls and uplift?
    2. Does Windstorm help with reducing wall air leakage?
    3. Does cutting Windstorm around windows and doors make the wall stronger?
    4. What is special about Windstorm and why does it work?
    5. Were any independent tests completed?
    6. Is Windstorm accepted by the building code?
    7. Why is blocking eliminated?
    8. Why do I need a Design Professional to provide a fastener schedule?
    9. Can Windstorm be used with Raised Heel (Energy) Truss Systems?
    10. What does Exposure 1 rating on the grade stamp mean?
    11. How much money can I save using Windstorm?
    12. Where can I buy Windstorm?
    13. Are there special requirements for a stucco exterior finish?

    Does Windstorm eliminate all hardware for shear walls and uplift?

    Windstorm panels can eliminate or reduce stud to plate connectors and floor to floor connector straps. Corner hold downs may still be required. Ask your engineer what hardware can be eliminated in your homes and to provide you with the nailing schedule to meet the uplift and shear code requirements using Windstorm.

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    Does Windstorm help with reducing wall air leakage?

    Windstorm offers an easy, efficient way to eliminate unnecessary horizontal joints altogether, thus significantly reducing wall air leakage. Installed vertically and sized just right to connect top and bottom plates, seams are located directly over studs.

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    Does cutting Windstorm around windows and doors make the wall stronger?

    Cutting Windstorm around window and door openings instead of cutting and piecing parts together adds strength to the wall. This method not only adds strength but reduces the number of joints that allow air leakage. The walls are completed faster with less waste and less labor. See or download the APA “Full-Scale House Test Project report Form No 3D007” in the APA Publications page.

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    What is special about Windstorm and why does it work?

    Norbord’s large continuous press mills can manufacture panels engineered to match wall heights whether slab on grade or raised floor. Windstorm panels are engineered to allow the use of the continuous sheathing methods allowed by building codes. High wind building codes such as SSTD 10-99 and the WFCM call for structural panels to cover from the top of the top plate, to the bottom of the bottom plate, or mid band, to meet combined uplift and shear values. Therefore 8′ framed wall heights on a slab require 97 1/8″ panels and 9′ framed wall heights need 109 1/8″ panel, right up to 145 1/8″ without joints. Windstorm panels are available in the right sizes and combined with a design professional’s fastener schedule provide the continuous load path required by the codes.

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    Were any independent tests completed?

    Yes, independent testing was completed by the NAHB Research Center and the APA, The Engineered Wood Association, has also completed combined shear and uplift testing.

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    Is Windstorm accepted by the building code?

    Windstorm is a structural PS2 OSB panel and is accepted by North American building codes including the Florida Building Code.

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    Why is blocking eliminated?

    Windstrom wall sheathing is installed vertically and covers from plate to plate. No blocking is required because there are no mid wall horizontal joints.

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    Why do I need a Design Professional to provide a fastener schedule?

    In many cases the design, type of structure and the physical location is unique. These differences such as size, shape, wall heights, roof pitch, and wind speeds all need to be taken into consideration when determining the uplift and shear values required to meet specific code requirements. Design professionals can make these necessary calculations and advise you of the correct fastener pattern. Some building codes do provide prescriptive methods and nailing patterns but the shear and uplift values must be calculated to determine the schedule.

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    Can Windstorm be used with Raised Heel (Energy) Truss Systems?

    It’s the perfect wall sheathing partner with raised heel truss systems.  Tests have been completed at the Innovative Research Lab (formerly the NAHB Research Center) with Windstorm/TallWall structural sheathing and raised heel trusses up to 24″ high.  These tests proved the two make a great combination to allow full depth insulation to the outside of the top plate while connecting the roof and wall systems.  Roof hurricane clips are eliminated in most parts of the country with a design professional’s fastener schedule.  Please see the APA’s (The Engineered Wood Assoc.) Product Report PR-N133 for details. Some Energy Codes allow reduced attic insulation in some climate zones with full depth insulation to the outside edge of the top plate.

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    What does Exposure 1 rating on the grade stamp mean?

    Exposure 1 rating means that the panel uses a waterproof resin. It does not mean the panel is waterproof but rather that the panel will withstand normal delays in construction without affecting the structural properties (strength) of the panel. All Windstorm panels carry the APA, The Engineered Wood Association, grade stamp.

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    How much money can I save using Windstorm?

    This will vary by the size, style, location of the home. Here are a number of areas where Windstorm can significantly reduce your costs and construction time.

    1. No lumber for blocking to buy and install – Material and labor savings!
    2. No stud to plate connectors to buy or install – Material and labor savings!
    3. No threaded bolts that connect the wall plates – Material and labor savings!
    4. No panels to cut and install as filler strips – Labor savings!
    5. Less waste – Less cutting and less chance of errors means savings!
    6. Flatter, stronger, stiffer, and straighter walls – Fewer call backs mean savings!
    7. No blocking and metal straps to get in the way of plumbers, electricians, interior trim installers – trades work faster and more efficiently!

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    Where can I buy Windstorm?

    Windstorm is available from your local building supply dealer. Ask for it by name. If your dealer or design professional requires assistance, have them contact us directly.

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    Are there special requirements for a stucco exterior finish?

    If Stucco is the exterior finish siding please refer to the APA (The Engineered Wood Assoc) Q370 for structural sheathing thickness and grade recommendations. You should also refer to applicable local building codes for proper stucco installation over OSB or plywood sheathing.

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  • Installation

    Windstorm OSB wall sheathing meets SSTD ICC 600

    Nailing Schedule Calculator

    Launch the Windstorm Capacity Calculator »

    How a House is Developed to Resist Uplift and Shear

    If your structure or location does not allow the use of prescriptive methods, only a licensed professional designer, such as an architect or professional engineer, has the training to calculate uplift and shear-resistance requirements for a wood-framed home. Designing requires calculations using variables such as wall height, wall length, roof slope, wind-speed, and local municipal building codes.

    Norbord OSB panels are certified by the APA – The Engineered Wood Association

    For wood framed structures the IRC requires that one of the following be used:

    1. American Forest and Paper Association – AF&PA Wood Frame Construction Manual for One and Two-Family Dwellings (WFCM)
      Download the Wood Frame Construction Manual High Wind Guides90 mph | 100 mph | 110 mph | 120 mph | 130 mph
    2. ICC 600
    3. Southern Building Code Congress International Standards for Hurricane Resistant Residential Construction (SSTD 10-99)
    4. Minimum Design Loads for Buildings and Other Structures (ASCE-7)

    Once uplift and shear values have been determined, the licensed professional designer will detail the method of transferring these forces, or loads, to the foundation, ensuring the home’s integrity.

    How to build with Windstorm Wall Sheathing

    Prevent Buckling with Proper Spacing

    Engineered Resources & Testing Results

    Innovation Research Lab Shear and Tensile Test

    We asked the Innovation Research Lab to conduct full-scale performance testing of walls sheathed with Windstorm OSB panels. The results for uplift tests showed a safety factor of 3.9, while the shear wall test results showed excellent agreement with published values and were consistent with ICC 600, formally SSTD 10-99.

    TN E510 Report

    The APA has published a technical report showing details for floor-to-floor connections as well as raised floor and two-story applications.

    H335 Report

    The APA has published and excellent report H335 called the “Wood Structural Panel Sheathing or Siding, Used To Resist Combined Shear And Uplift”. This 8 page report takes the information and tables from several code documents and puts them into an easy, single report.

    SR-101B Report

    Design for Combined Shear and Uplift from Wind

    PR-N133 Product Report

    This is a product report by the APA (PR-N133) “Norbord TallWall/Windstorm Rated Sheathing for Use with IRC Energy-Heel Trusses” for using Windstorm and/or TallWall from Norbord with Raised Heel/Energy Trusses.

    The above documents are available for download from the APA Publications section.

    Sheath around openings for added strength, less waste and air leakage

    Sheath around openings for added strength, less waste and air leakage

    Add Strength Around Window and Door Openings

    Cutting Windstorm around window and door openings instead of cutting and piecing parts together adds strength to the wall. This method not only adds strength but reduces the number of joints that allow air leakage. The walls are completed faster with less waste and less labor. See or download the APA “Full-Scale House Test Project report Form No 3D007” in the APA Publications page.

    Great Information

    If Stucco is the exterior finish siding please refer to the APA (The Engineered Wood Assoc) Q370 for structural sheathing thickness and grade recommendations. You should also refer to applicable local building codes for proper stucco installation over OSB or plywood sheathing.

    Wood Moisture Content and The Importance of Drying in Wood Building Systems”. This APA Technical Topics TT-111B is a great read for Builders, Designers, Engineers, and other end users. It has a lot of information that will help design and build better structures. Visit the Resources section under APA Documents for details.

    Resources

    Visit the resources page for more information on product documents, forest certification, APA publications, seminars & trade shows.

  • Wall Capacity Calculator