The 5 Ways MAC Metal Siding Turned Disaster into Dazzling for the Exterior of a Texas Office Building

Building featuring MAC metal siding
MAC metal siding
Britt Stokes, Acme Brick

When they designed the ENT building in Fort Worth, Texas, the architects from the highly regarded firm of 97w did what great designers do: They spent weeks researching construction materials for the exterior facade of the building with the idea that it would make it stand out among the other buildings in the rapidly growing Clearfork area.

They decided that reclaimed Brazilian hardwood was the perfect complement to the building’s overall modern design. Since this wood has been successfully installed across the country and its patina seemed to get more interesting as the years went by, there was little concern for its durability.

Unfortunately, in less time than it took for the ENT staff to become accustomed to their parking spots, the reclaimed hardwood began to fail.

Due to the Texas weather, the tight seams between the boards separated, and the wood discolored and warped, popping nails and tilting and twisting out of its frame. It was a mess. Fortunately, the ENT building was just around the corner from the corporate headquarters of Acme Brick, a place where many construction experts show up for work every day.

An Architectural Challenge

“It is frustrating, as an architect, to research a product and have it fail,” said Steven Halliday (AIA, LEED AP) of 97w. “We consulted with the original siding vendor on specifications, details, and installation. Nonetheless, we saw issues within the first year—board twist and warp.

“We tried simple modifications, consulting with the supplier, but it became evident that the original wood material could not withstand the Texas climate. We began researching a replacement, but strict rules on materiality in Clearfork meant limited solutions for a wood alternative. Having Acme Brick around the corner helped. Representatives watching the problems unfold reached out about MAC Metal, which compared well to fiber cement and other metal products, especially for long-term maintenance.

“The MAC panels maintained the warmth and varied appearance of the wood siding and kept the same sight lines. Replacement was simple. Once the siding was removed and vapor barrier and sheathing inspected, the MAC panels were installed. The overall wall profile did not change. We were able to finish in six months, working in sections in a continuous process. In the end, building materials must be beautiful and durable. We are pleased with the final product and can rest easy in the assurance of the MAC Metal system.” 

A Steel Solution

Juxtaposing two or more materials on the facade of a building is part of the creative genius of cutting-edge architectural firms like 97w. This skill convinced them that MAC Metal Architectural was a fitting replacement for the failed Brazilian hardwood.

According to a case study of this project, “MAC Metal siding offers the remarkable option of a wood appearance without the continual wood maintenance. Six different grain patterns and three different wood tones in each box ensure a variegated, natural look. Installers randomize the pattern, working with 12-foot-long panels that have a 6 1/16” lap exposure. Fasteners are concealed, and the ‘Harrywood’ profile can be installed horizontally, vertically, or diagonally.

“Its 25-year fade warranty and 40-year product warranty rest on a PVDF paint system that includes a zinc primer, two paint primer coats, and three topcoats on the exposed face.”

The Five Benefits of MAC Metal

Many architects and builders have realized the benefits of specifying MAC Metal Architectural instead of wood or vinyl.

#1: No Maintenance Is Required

Vinyl siding can become brittle over time, especially in below-freezing conditions, fiber cement siding and wood siding will require painting and caulking at least every decade. In addition, moisture can cause mold and mildew in wood and vinyl. By contrast, MAC Metal siding is maintenance-free.

#2: MAC Metal Is Color-Fast

Unlike wood, vinyl, or other synthetic sidings, the colors of MAC Metal siding will NEVER fade. The exclusive MAC TEXTURAL Color System includes a six-coat painting process that is twice as resistant to UV rays and three times more resistant to corrosion. This means the siding offers increased performance against bad weather and extreme climatic conditions.

The wide range of colors offers an unmatched depth of hues and textures, which perfectly mimic materials such as copper, zinc, and bronze. The matte finish process of MAC Metal siding eliminates all undesirable glimmer effects from the sun. This process also increases the resistance to scratching and delamination.

#3: It’s Fire-Resistant

Buildings are safer when they are clad with MAC Metal because it is fire-resistant. This can be a tremendous advantage in high-fire areas or areas prone to frequent lightning storms. Of course, Acme Brick offers the ultimate fire protection, but MAC is also pretty darn good! This protection might also translate into lower monthly insurance premiums.

#4: The MAC Metal Warranty Is One of the Best in the Industry

When MAC Metal siding is installed to the manufacturer’s specifications, it has a 40-year warranty. Period. When this is compared to wood siding, which must be repainted and caulked every 10 years, this is a huge saving for the building owner.

#5: It’s Environmentally Friendly

MAC Metal siding is made from 100% recycled materials. This means that buildings can earn points toward LEED certification with this metal siding.

As a commercial builder, your clients know their return on investment is inextricably tied to the construction material choices. Architects have found that siding from MAC Metal Architectural can help them meet unforeseen challenges, including the weather.

Click here to talk to an Acme Brick representative. They are experts on this durable and dazzling product!