Knauf drywall goes outdoors with new Aquapanel Exterior

Drywall technology goes outdoors with new Knauf Aquapanel Exterior – a robust, water and weather resistant board that sets new standards for the design and construction of buildings. Knauf Aquapanel Exterior gives architects and builders a high quality, fast and extremely economical alternative to traditional methods of construction – and enabling rapid closure of a building. Ideally suited for both timber or steel framed buildings, Knauf Aquapanel Exterior is the perfect substrate for render and other exterior finishes.

Knauf Aquapanel Exterior is a bendable, non-combustible building panel made of aggregated Portland cement with a polymer coated glass fibre mesh embedded in its front and rear surfaces. It has all the advantages of a dry panel system – plus the durability of brick and block. It is designed for exterior walls in ventilated or water managed (directly applied) systems. The 12.5mm thick boards weigh 16kg/m2 and are 900mm x 2,400mm.

Richard Lord, Knauf Aquapanel Specification Manager – Exterior Systems, says: “This exciting new product rapidly creates a weatherproof envelope, giving dry lining and other trades a head start on interior works. Once it’s installed, with joints and screwheads filled, Knauf Aquapanel Exterior can be left without further finishing for up to six months.

“Knauf Aquapanel Exterior is installed just like indoor drywall systems, and brings much shorter building times to external walls. It is perfect for new-build projects, but can also add design and construction benefits to extensions, façade renovations, exterior ceilings and many other outdoor projects.”

It is simple and easy to install – just 15 minutes per square metre, including screws, joint tape and joint filler. It can be cut to shape using the score and snap technique and there is no need for time consuming processing methods or special tools. With less working time required compared to other exterior systems, Knauf Aquapanel Exterior reduces installation costs.

Developed alongside the market leading Knauf Aquapanel tile backer board, Knauf Aquapanel Exterior represents a significant advance in cement board technology. It is resistant to water, so there is no swelling or loss of stability even when wet. It also resists weathering, mould and changes of temperature – the system has a proven freeze-thaw cycle, and is used throughout Europe from Norway to Greece. It has excellent impact resistance, and is safe and hygienic. It can be curved too – the 900mm board bends to a minimum radius of 3m; 300mm strips may be bent to a 1m radius.

In water managed (directly applied) systems, the board is fixed with screws to the timber or steel frame, over a water barrier membrane. Joints are taped and filled and the surface is primed and reinforced before finishing with a silicon synthetic resin render or dispersion render.

In ventilated systems, typically over existing rigid substructures, the board is fitted to a framework of battens and laths, before being finished in the same way. Ventilated systems include a continuous air vent which prevents entry of insects or other pests.

Knauf Drywall has a full range of accessory products and finishes for Knauf Aquapanel Exterior. It can also be finished with paint systems and thin brick or ceramic coverings attached with flexible adhesives.

Knauf Drywall manufactures a full range of plasters, plasterboards, insulating laminates, dry flooring, drywall accessories, and metal sections for domestic, commercial and public sector applications. Knauf Drywall pioneered carbon neutral plasterboard in the UK with Knauf Futurepanel. Knauf Drywall also actively promotes recycling from building sites and has a zero waste policy in its energy efficient factories at Sittingbourne in Kent and Immingham on Humberside.

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