What is the Purpose of Plasterboard in Building Construction?

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In this era of growing environmental awareness and corporate responsibility, the benefits of using plasterboard remain significant. In this article, we will be looking at plasterboard and why it remains so popular. 

What Is Plasterboard? 

Plasterboard is made from a layer of gypsum plaster that is “sandwiched” between two layers of heavy-duty recycled paper. The process was first invented in 1894 and used felt paper. Compared to applying layers of wet, lime-based plaster, using plasterboard was faster and easier to install. The plasterboard also provided a smooth finished surface that was great for painting and provided excellent insulation. Since the plaster core layer was already dry, plasterboard earned its other name: drywall. Nowadays, which term you use depends on where you are. 

What Is Plasterboard Used For? 

In residential housing construction and lightweight framed commercial construction, plasterboard is attached to studs to create walls but can also be attached to masonry walls including brick. It is also used as a ceiling lining and to create architectural design features such as arches, eaves and curved walls. In commercial buildings, plasterboard can be used to make columns to conceal steel beams and to top off masonry walls above ceilings. 

GTEK Plasterboard is available in a wide range to suit your needs. The properties of the different plasterboards in our range vary, they include: 

  • Fire-Resistant. The non-combustible core of the plasterboard wall retards the spread of heat and fire by releasing chemically bound water when heated (a process similar to evaporation). Plasterboard has a low smoke density and low flame spread index, and it serves as a heat-insulating barrier. It is classified in the National Construction Code (NCC) as non-combustible and is critical in terms of meeting fire regulations under the NCC — such as critical radiant flux and group number requirements. Fire-resistant plasterboard tends to be thicker and made with special additives. 
  • Moisture and Mould-Resistant. Wet area plasterboard features a special coating to prevent the buildup of mould and moisture and has ingredients added to the core that reduces moisture absorption, making it perfect for bathrooms and kitchens. 
  • Soundproofing. GTEK Sound Plasterboard minimises sound transmission because of the nature of its gypsum core and thickness. Specially made plasterboards use a higher density core to further reduce sound transmission when compared with regular plasterboard. 
  • Quick to Install. Plasterboard is lightweight and therefore quick and easy to install. Hard plaster as an alternative in buildings constructed from masonry takes much longer to install and being a wet trade, creates more mess on site. 
  • Versatile. Plasterboard is a common staple in residential housing but suits a variety of other commercial environments — such as offices and warehouses. It is one of the most versatile building products. 
  • Cost-Effective. The ingredients that make up plasterboard — recycled paper, gypsum, certain additives, and water — are widely available, and the plasterboard making process is easy. As a result, the overall price of plasterboard products is lower than most other wall options. Furthermore, because it is durable, upkeep and maintenance are both easy and inexpensive. Plasterboard also makes for excellent insulation and can improve a building’s energy efficiency. 
  • Sustainable. Using plasterboard can decrease a project’s carbon footprint. Because it is so lightweight, plasterboard reduces transport costs. The main component, gypsum, is a naturally occurring mineral. The liner paper is also made from waste newspaper and cardboard, and plasterboard is recyclable. 

What Thickness of Plasterboard Should You Use? 

In Australia, 10mm thick plasterboard tends to be used for residential construction, and 13mm thick plasterboard is typically used for commercial. It is also available in 6.5mm for curved walls and in 16mm where higher fire ratings need to be achieved. With so many available features, the best way to work out what thickness and type of plasterboard to use is to speak to the experts. They can help you find the best options for your particular project requirements and budget. 

GTEK offers an incredible range of plasterboards to meet any of your building needs. Contact us today and find the best GTEK plasterboards for your construction project. 

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