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Interior Decorating > Uses of Expansion Joints in Architecture

Uses of Expansion Joints in Architecture

Expansion Joints are used for many important architectural structures that specifically have a requirement of these joints. Buildings especially high rises are subject to many factors like wind velocity, weather, seismic activity, etc. all these things can damage the building even though the construction is faultless.

Let's look at a few uses of the Expansion Joint Covers

Floor Expansion Joint Covers

Floor expansion joints covers need to be selected very carefully as it is one of the most critical steps in the specification process. Major consideration when choosing floor covers is the presence of rolling loads and the requirement of hygiene. Aesthetics of the seismic covers is also another important consideration.

Wall & Ceiling

After selecting the floor cover choosing the wall cover is next on the list. It is a relatively simple decision in comparison but when it comes to the seismic joints covers there are other options depending upon the aesthetics and the functionality. There are many various options like stainless steel ones to panel type joint covers, there are covers that detach from the wall in order to minimize damage or you can even choose from ones that close on their own to minimize post event maintenance.


Exterior walls of any structure needs to be reinforced to handle the worst of the weathers. Joints get affected by heat, shrinkage, etc and in such cases you can't have the joints that hold together the wall panels in place being damaged. In buildings you can have vertical thermoplastic exterior seals where as for large seismic walls you could use flush wall covers that offer you zero sightline. You can have flexible neoprene bellows with galvanized flanges or with forced aluminum covers.

Parking and Stadium

Parking garages require very well installed floor joints and roof joints. As car parks are multi level structures they require the floor joints to be in place to avoid the slipping of the cars when they are in the parked position. Most floor expansion joints covers fall off because the bolts that hold them down fall off and these bolts need to be protected by good quality covers that will protect the center bolt. Stadiums again have very large roofs and floor spaces that require the structure to be built in a safe manner.

Compression Seals

Compression seals are the best option for joint expansions as they deal with movements very well. They need to be bound into place with water tight sealing and so it is important that you get good quality compression seals.

Winged Seals

Winged seals are used in garages and stadiums where the constant wheeling and parking of vehicles require no failings, no nosings and no garage closing for repairs that thus save you costs on maintenance.

By:Wilbur Savage

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