How to Calculate Wind Forces

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When constructing a wall of a structure it is important to be sure to build the structure in such a manner that it can withstand the forces that will be applied on it by heavy winds. Calculating the force on a wall requires only the application of a simple formula, which you can easily commit to memory after a few applications.

Things You'll Need

  • Calculator with cosine (cos) function
  • Pencil
  • Scrap paper
  • Wind gauge
  • Measure the velocity of the wind using the wind gauge and note it on the paper.

  • Multiply the wind velocity by the cosine of the angle at which the wind is hitting the wall on your calculator, and note the result. This is the relative velocity of the wind on the wall.

  • Multiply the relative velocity by .00256 and note on the paper.

  • Square the number found in Step 3. This is the force of the wind in pounds per square foot.

  • Multiply the force by the area of the wall (length of the wall multiplied by height of the wall for a rectangular wall) to find the total force on the wall.

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