The desert is a difficult place to build and work; there are physical and environmental challenges to overcome. In the desert environment of 29 Palms, the military was tearing down old housing and building new homes for personnel. Since this is a military installation there were added challenges.
The first challenge was blending the roof color with the surrounding landscape. The color flexibility of 3M’s ceramic coated granules enabled DECRA Roofing Systems to develop a special color for the project; Sandstone blended well with the surroundings and kept the military base somewhat hidden.
Another challenge was the environment. The desert of 29 Palms experiences constant winds of 90 mph. Because of their unique interlocking design, DECRA panels have a 120 mph wind warranty, and have been tested to a velocity of 150 mph. Furthermore, the horizontal fastening method through the nose of the panel, rather than vertical placement through the face of the product, adds strength to the roof. The horizontal fastener would have to be sheared apart in order for the panels to blow off.
Steel is strong, but lightweight. DECRA panels weigh only 125 - 150 pounds per square installed. The lightweight characteristic of DECRA panels was important to the health and safety of the installation crew; dehydration and exhaustion are a constant concern in the heat of the desert. The lightweight panels were easy to carry up the roof, but strong enough to permit other trades to work on the roof without damage.
An added benefit of the DECRA Tile is its batten installation. A recent study out of Oak Ridge National Labs confirms that the air space created by a batten installation helps to pull heated air out of the attic space, and prevent it from moving into the conditioned space: a true benefit for a desert climate.
DECRA Roofing Systems require little to no maintenance, and the steel substrate meets sustainability requirements for the military.