5 ways Specwall supports a sustainable, cost-effective construction future

It is well known at this point that the construction industry is responsible for up to 40% of global carbon emissions. Furthermore, in the UK the industry is responsible for more than 30% of all waste products which go to landfill. This makes it a key industry as the UK transitions to Net Zero Carbon.

In the face of this reality, the construction industry is beginning to evolve and become more environmentally sustainable. The changing technology environment has enabled the creation and promotion of new businesses models which promise to disrupt the construction industry in a positive way. Sustainable building materials are no longer a niche product.

Specwall’s sustainable modular wall systems are a key part of this industry shift and are leading the way to a better future for construction. At the same time, the Specwall product also offers economic savings – making this the ideal product for all types of building projects.

As costs rise, efficient materials will not only benefit your bottom line but also will support with environmentally friendly construction. Sustainability will go beyond regulatory compliance and become the new standard.

Here are five ways in which Specwall supports a sustainable, cost-effective construction future…

1 – Very low amount of waste produced

Specwall modular wall panels produce an extremely low amount of waste during both the manufacturing and installation stages. Overall, only 0.5% of the product is wasted and sent to landfill. This makes Specwall notably superior to other comparable products.

The factory-manufactured nature of Specwall means that each panel is the exact size and shape needed for the project. If adjustments are needed on site, any off cuts can be reused in situ to avoid throwing them in the bin.

Likewise, the nature of Specwall as a water permeable product means that it is resistant to water and mould damage. If it gets wet then it does not need to be discarded in the same way that plasterboard would, meaning Specwall is a fantastic plasterboard alternative. This makes Specwall more versatile and cost effective as well as being better for the environment.

Finally, if the layout of a building needs to change post-completion, Specwall panels are fully demountable and can be reused in their entirety by cutting and regluing the panels. This flexibility increases the material sustainability of the building and future proofs it against future needs.

2 – No need to over-order materials

As mentioned in the previous section, Specwall panels are manufacture off-site in precise factory conditions. By doing so, we can cut each panel exactly to order to fit the required space.

It has been estimated by Zero Waste Scotland (PDF) that as much as 13% of materials ordered for a construction project are discarded unused. Using Specwall almost entirely eliminates the need or reason to over order in the first place.

By allowing you to order precisely the right quantities, Specwall cuts down on the amount of materials produced, largely eliminates waste, and can cost less because you are ordering few materials overall.

3 – Inherent insulation values

The ongoing energy crisis has highlighted the need to make new buildings as efficient as possible, and the time to act when designing your next development is now. The problem of energy efficiency will only become more urgent as the climate crisis progresses, making insulation a key issue on all buildings.

You can achieve good insulation levels and improve the sustainability of your building by specifying a high grade of internal wall insulation or using energy saving materials. The Specwall system allows you to do both and choose a wall that has inherent insulation values built into every panel.

A well-insulated house reduces the heating and cooling needed, and it also provides an inherent level of acoustic insulation. By choosing Specwall, you get all this in one simple product that is easy to install.

We design a bespoke system which will achieve whatever insulation value you are targeting on your project. Our panels are solid, lightweight and easy to install on top of that, making Specwall a beneficial choice environmentally and economically.

4 – Single-visit construction process

No matter whether you choose Specwall’s A1- or A2-rated panels, they share some similarities which will cut your development’s carbon footprint and our costs at the same time.

As mentioned previously, our panels are cut to measure off-site and delivered to site ready to use. The system is so efficient that it installed in just a single visit and will only require a single set of vehicle movements.

This easy-to-install system can meet almost any requirement and any situation, reducing your programme time. All joints are PU adhesive bonded and filled with grout and taping and jointing can be requested by the client. The wall can have finishes applied directly, including tiles, skim and paint, and timber pattressing is not required with our system.

In this way, Specwall cuts down on the overall pollution generated by vehicles at the same time as reducing overall programme time. Time and motion studies show that by using Specwall as a blockwork replacement or alternative to a Steel Framing Systems (SFS), you can reduce labour hours needed for installation by as much as 55%.

As with all aspects of Specwall, it helps you improve the sustainability of your development at the same time as cutting costs.

5 – A1 fire-rated panels

One of the most sustainable things you can do in construction is build something which is designed to stand for decades to come. The initial material extraction and the construction process lead to the embodied carbon which will be the most significant environmental cost of any building. Every year a building stands it becomes more sustainable.

Sustainability means futureproofing, and one of the most important ways to do that is to ensure that you are using the most up to date fire resistant materials on the market.

In order to provide safe places for people to live, future-proof properties for funders and investors and mitigate the risk of expensive remedial works, Specwall researched and developed an A1 fire rated walling system for the construction industry.

This panel exceeds current safety regulations and will satisfy proposed future legislation as well. Key technical information about our A1 panel is as follows:

  • No flammable material in the panel
  • Cannot contribute to a fire at any stage
  • Same weight and strength as standard A2-rated panel
  • 100m depth, single-layer system
  • Simple, integrated, stand-alone
  • Price competitive with SFS or blockwork alternatives

And in addition, it retains all of the same cost and time saving advantages that all Specwall panels benefit from.

Sustainability is as important as it ever has been in construction. By choosing Specwall you can meet your environmental obligations at the same time as achieving cost efficiency. To find out more about Specwall and how it could benefit your project, click here.

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