Home 5 Ag Stories Protecting farm buildings from Mother Nature

Protecting farm buildings from Mother Nature

According to the National Weather Service, Iowa felt the effect of 69 tornadoes in 2018. While this number is considered piddly when compared to states like that of Kansas and Arkansas, the damages are more than significant. This spring, farm operations felt that same destruction via silos and machinery buildings falling victim to major storms. But, could farmers be helping themselves more to avoid such sizeable damage?

Dan Nyberg, sales training manager for Morton Buildings, updated farmers on the concerns they should be made aware of when looking to put up new farm buildings.

“For starters, no building is totally immune to the most destructive of storms. However, for added durability against severe climate conditions, be sure to ask your builder about the source of their materials. For example: Who manufactures and roll-forms the steel panels covering your structure? What kind of steel do they use for those panels? Are the panels fastened with screws or with nails? And what grade of lumber is used in the columns and trusses? Some of these are key elements in the overall performance of the structure.”

The Morton Buildings manager said their builds are more durable due to Morton’s construction classification.

“Morton Buildings utilizes post-frame construction – that’s a highly engineered wood-frame building system that features large, laminated columns instead of wood studs, steel framing or concrete masonry. Buildings need significant wind uplift protection. Steel panel covered buildings get their strength from a combination of the building framework and panels. Consider the strength of your large siding and overhead doors. Many building failures begin when wind gets inside the building through a door failure. And, in the aftermath of hurricanes, tornadoes and snowstorms, post-frame buildings often stand tall when surrounding buildings are reduced to rubble.”

Nyberg explained how a company warranty plays a far bigger role in the honesty of their work than most customers tend to consider.

“Does your building supplier have a warranty which covers both wind and snow loads? Does the warranty provide for full replacement or is it prorated based on years of use or only for loss beyond your insurance coverage? Is the company you are purchasing responsible for honoring the warranty – or is it a pass through from their suppliers? Pass through warranties are often very challenging to make claims on.”