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Steel framing and NCC 2022

NCC 2022 includes a range of changes that affect steel framed housing. The effective management of condensation, energy efficiency, and thermal bridging means you must determine whether the intended configuration is right for the products you intend to use.

Steel framed roofs and walls  

Roofs and walls need to meet multiple objectives and require many decisions. The choice to use sarking and its location can be influenced by the need to achieve thermal, condensation or bushfire requirements.

The type and location of roof and ceiling insultation interacts with the roof pitch and ventilation to affect the way moisture moves through a building and how thermal bridging is achieved.

For roofs of buildings in Climate Zones 6, 7, and 8 where ceiling level insulation is proposed, a 20mm gap must be provided between the primary insulation and the cladding or impermeable membrane (sarking - if installed).  Where a permeable membrane is installed or continuous insulation to meet the thermal bridging requirements, a 20mm gap is required above the membrane.

The method for drainage of the space above the membrane to the gutter must also be carefully considered. In pitched roofs, care should be taken to ensure where the ceiling insulation intersects the external wall the 20mm gap between the primary insulation layer and the underside of a membrane is there to allow the free flow of ventilation.

In NCC 2022, thermal breaks in roofs and walls of a minimum R value of 0.2 are required when external lightweight cladding and internal lining is attached directly to the same member, such as a wall stud or rafter.

The installation of a reflective membrane in combination with a 20mm airspace is common in steel-framed external walls. Depending on the climate zone where the building is located, NCC Volume Two 10.8.1 may require membranes to achieve different permeability.

Lightweight cladding for roofs specifically refers to metal roof sheeting, while for walls, it includes weatherboards, fiber-cement, and metal wall cladding, not Insulated Sandwich Panels.

More resources 

The Australian Steel Institute (ASI), in collaboration with the National Association of Steel framed Housing (NASH), have created a range of NCC 2022 resources including presentations and technical guides on Roof and Wall Cladding, Bushfire Design, Energy Efficiency, Condensation Management, Ventilation, and Insulated Sandwich Panels in steel framed buildings.

Steel roof and wall cladding installation 

This steel roof and wall cladding installation guide focuses on best practices for steel roof and wall cladding, emphasising weathertightness, moisture management, and structural support per NCC 2022 requirements for non-cyclonic areas. It highlights correct detailing and installation of flashings and membranes - key requirements for a weatherproofing system. 

Bushfire design 

This bushfire design document underscores steel's non-combustible nature, ideal for construction in bushfire-prone areas. It explores bushfire design principles, detailing and compliance pathways (AS3959 and NS300 NASH). Examples of steel roofing and walling for BAL-12.5 to BAL-40 are provided for each pathway, emphasising adherence to a single pathway for compliance. 

Energy efficient steel framing 

This energy efficient steel framing document provides an overview of the NCC 2022 Energy Efficiency provisions affecting steel framed residential buildings. It outlines compliance pathways, explains thermal bridging mitigation requirements, offers easy-to-install construction solutions under the DTS Elemental pathway, and directs readers to additional information sources. 

Condensation management 

Discover effective moisture management for your steel roof system to prevent condensation issues. This condensation management document covers the rising importance of moisture control in residential buildings, key design principles, ventilation strategies for diverse roof types, considerations for steel clad roof systems, and case studies for practical insights. Prioritise moisture management for a healthy, dry, and comfortable building. 

Ventilation in steel roofing 

Navigate NCC 2022's new ventilation requirements in Climate Zones 6-8 with this ventilation in steel roofing guide. Offering practical insights, it explores methods for effective ventilation in steel roofing, providing examples and drawings for a variety of residential applications. Stay informed on condensation management requirements for steel roofing systems. 

Insulated sandwich panels 

This insulated sandwich panels document guides the use of insulated sandwich panels to simplify compliance with NCC 2022's energy efficiency requirements. NCC 2022 introduces notable improvements for utilising insulated sandwich panels in residential applications across both volumes. Dedicated tables for insulated roofing panels simplify compliance with energy efficiency standards for designers and builders.  

Follow the above links to find out more about changes in the NCC 2022 when building with steel framing. 

To find out more, contact HIA's Building Services team.

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