Building Envelope Assessments – Keys to Managing Deferred Maintenance

Building Envelope Assessments

 Roof Evaluation - Building Envelope Assessments Window Study - Building Envelope Assessments Building Envelope Assessment

What is a building envelope?

A building envelope is classified as everything that separates and protects indoors from the outdoors. This includes exterior wall systems and siding, roofing, foundations, windows, and doors.

Why is a building envelope assessment necessary?

Building envelope assessments are used to address any potential issues that might require repair or replacement, which may be prone to moisture intrusion, site grading, and drainage, or other areas where construction defects commonly occur including:

  1. Condition related to weather tightness and signs of water infiltration
  2. Failures in exterior claddings related to structural settlement
  3. Condition and age of the roof
  4. Condition and age of insulated glass

Building envelope assessments are also used to provide more information on life cycle costs related to the maintenance of exterior materials and evaluation of the envelope related to building energy consumption.

Using technology to determine areas of improvement in building envelope assessment.


What is Facilitate SchemmerIn order to efficiently and effectively conduct a complete building envelope assessment, Schemmer has developed a state-of-the-art proprietary facility assessment software program called FACILITATE, which is unique to our firm. FACILITATE enables our team to input data on-site and in real-time, quickly compiling the information for analysis and reporting.

Once all data is collected, the assessment takes into account individual elements of the building shell (roofing, windows, curtain wall, masonry, siding, paint, etc.), the year it was built, quantities, current condition, recommendations, life expectancy, cost estimate, and priority level.


Schemmer incorporates the latest in 3D building scanning using the Leica RTC360 Laser Scanner. This cutting-edge technology shoots two million points per second and creates 360° advanced High-Dynamic Range (HDR) imaging. Not only for use in an existing building, but this technology can also be incorporated into the construction phase to provide “as-constructed” models of various building systems that may soon be concealed by finishes or other construction.

From identifying water intrusion to improving the accuracy of repair efforts, drone technology can examine your building, up to 400 feet. All of this can be done with you physically walking more than a few steps, and remaining safely on the ground. Most buildings can be completely examined in 20 to 30 minutes and the footage can be live-streamed to the architect or engineer at the office. This allows for a more efficient and cost-effective process.

Drones can also reduce time and manual labor when it comes to identifying problems behind the walls, like water intrusion. Instead of tearing down walls to identify the full extent of the damage, infrared drone technology can provide critical information on the location and complexity of the issue. Schemmer uses advanced technology with drones to create detailed 3D models. Drone footage is converted to a point cloud, a precisely scaled 3D digital replica, which can be imported into Revit and used for BIM. Information can be added to the model bringing everything together for a seamless review of your project.


Schemmer can provide an infrared thermo-scan to detect temperature and moisture differences in building systems. The ThermaCAM™ B2, manufactured by FLIR Systems, has a 45-degree wide-spread lens. It can be used on roofs for the following: to detect areas of moisture within roofing systems and at roof penetrations; on walls to detect mold; to locate wall-framing members; on electrical panels to detect potential faulty breakers, and on countless other noninvasive investigation procedures.

At Schemmer, our mission is “to enable our clients to define and achieve their goals.” Schemmer recognizes that each client has a unique vision for their project, and while your vision may be unique, the process we use to define and develop that vision has been used successfully many times before. Whether the project is a small interior renovation of an existing building or a multi-story building, office or industrial, metal building or conventional steel, we have experience in all categories and the process is the same.

Check out some of our assessment projects:



Schemmer is a full-service architecture, engineering, and construction field services, consultant. Providing responsible solutions for complex design and construction-related challenges.

Founded in 1959, we are grounded in our past but remain fully committed to the future. Located in four states and eight offices throughout the Midwest, Schemmer is providing services to clients from coast-to-coast and border-to-border across the United States.

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