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Get building moisture and mold under control

Get building moisture and mold under control

Get building moisture and mold under control with the launch of Gyproc’s groundbreaking M2TECH Moisture and Mold Resistant lining system, building owners and developers can now enjoy long term protection from the devastating effects of damp and mold in buildings. Jason Hird, Gyproc’s Technical Development Manager explains why control of moisture, which can lead to infestation of mold, is such an important issue today and how new M2TECH technology can help.

To meet the need for more effective moisture control in buildings, Dubai-based Saint-Gobain Gyproc ME has launched a groundbreaking new moisture and mold resistant lining system. The new system offers outstanding performance when tested to ASTM standards, and has been granted certification by the prestigious US GREENGUARD environmental Institute.

A product of the Saint-Gobain worldwide innovation and product development programme, the new moisture and mold resistant lining system brings together a high performance moisture and mold resistant gypsum lining board, a mold resistant jointing tape and a special moisture and mold resistant ready-mixed jointing compound – everything needed for a complete moisture and mold resistant lining. Incorporating the latest M2TECH advanced technology, the system has been specially developed for high moisture environments, such as kitchens, wet rooms, gym and pool areas etc, and is ideal as a wall and ceiling lining in residential, commercial, educational and healthcare buildings, especially in fast build projects where linings are applied before the exterior fabric is completed.

Where does moisture come from?

Because we don’t have extreme changes of temperature and rainfall common in many European countries, it is all too easy to ignore the issue of moisture control when designing and planning our buildings. However, in the UAE we are instead faced with very high levels of humidity in the external air and artificially high temperature differentials between the interior and exterior of buildings meaning when warm moist air enters the building it condensates creating surface moisture which can quickly turn to mold.On top of this, activities that take place within the building – daily activities such as cooking, bathing and exercising, and even people breathing, all create moisture that can cause problems. If we fail to address these issues at the design stage, we are storing up a whole range of potential problems for both the short and long term health of the building structure and the eventual occupants.

How moisture affects us

If not properly controlled, moisture can cause staining and mold growth on internal walls and ceilings and, if allowed to condense within the building fabric itself, can reduce the thermal performance of the roof and wall structures, and eventually lead to the corrosion of steel components, chemical deterioration of linings, finishes, ceiling tiles etc and even deterioration of concrete and masonry. Equally important is the effect that damp and mold can have on the internal air quality, and on the health of families, or on employees working within a building.

Damp, humid atmospheres create ideal breeding grounds for fungi, bacteria and dust mites which thrive on damp walls and ceilings, furnishings and carpets – and which, once they take a hold can be extremely difficult to eradicate. The result is uncomfortable and unhealthy internal conditions, which can promote asthma and lung problems, leading to potential long-term health issues.

Why linings are important in combating moisture and mold

Whilst there are a number of ways in which the building designer can reduce the opportunity for moist air to enter the building from outside, for instance through airtight construction techniques and creating positive internal pressure, these do not address the issue of moisture created within the building. It is therefore important to both prevent the opportunity for external moisture penetration and address internal moisture through a combination of active measures, such as fresh air systems to reduce the need for air conditioning, and localised moisture protection through the use of appropriate lining systems.

Particular attention must be paid to wet rooms, kitchens, gyms and other activity areas where tiled finishes are commonly specified. In such areas, surface water penetration through gaps and degeneration of tile grouting is not realised until tiles fall away from the wall. By this time, moisture has not only penetrated the underlining board, but damp and mold has probably started to attack the supporting structure – with expensive and potentially disastrous consequences.

It is therefore important in such areas to specify a high performance moisture and mold resistant lining system, such as the new Gyproc Moisture and Mold Resistant system from the outset, to provide protection should the tiled finish fail.

The secret behind the Gyproc M2TECH system

The groundbreaking M2TECH technology, developed by Gyproc’s sister company CertainTeed in the United States, is based around a special high performance biocidal core additive that gives new Gyproc Moisture and Mold Resistant Board outstanding protection against moisture penetration and the highest possible ratings for mold resistance when tested to ASTM D 3273 and ASTM G 21, the industry standard tests for mold and fungal resistance. To complete the lining specification, the new board is combined with Gyproc Mold Resistant Fibre Tape – a high strength, self-adhesive, moisture resistant mesh tape with an anti-microbial coating that also scores a perfect ‘10’rating in the ASTM mold test, and Gyproc Mold Resistant Joint Compound – a newly formulated ready mixed joint filler and finisher specially developed for high moisture and mold-prone environments. This combination lining system has been shown to provide ultimate protection against moisture and mold for at-risk areas and buildings.

The green solution

The new Gyproc system is not only one of the most effective ways of preventing moisture and mold in high-risk areas, it also offers environmental benefits for the designer keen to satisfy the growing demand for sustainable building components and solutions. Being gypsum-based – the system offers all of the natural, recyclability and recycled content benefits associated with any gypsum-based lining board. Equally important, however, is the contribution that the system makes to indoor air quality. By eliminating damp and mold, the M2TECH system reduces the potential for fungi, bacteria, dust mites and other airborne spores, creating a cleaner, healthier environment for families and employees living and working in protected buildings. This is borne out by the leading US GREENGUARD Environmental Institute, which has granted M2TECH boards certification in their prestigious ‘Children and Schools’ and Indoor Air Quality’ categories.

The easy to use system

One of the big benefits of Gyproc’s new M2TECH system is its simplicity. It uses the same fixing and finishing techniques as standard lining systems and products, so installers do not need to learn any new skills. Gyproc Moisture and Mold Resistant Board is easy to handle and cut, and uses the same fixings and fixing techniques as regular board, and joints are filled and finished using fibre tape and joint compound in exactly the same way as standard linings.

The system will accept tiled finishes up to 12.5mm thick or 32kg/m2 as standard, and can accept heavier tile or marble cladding with suitable direct mechanical or batten fixing – exactly the same as standard board linings. The only difference is in the level of performance offered and in the peace of mind which it gives to building operators and owners, who can be assured of trouble-free moisture and mold protection throughout the building life.

Gyproc Customer Centre Toll free 800 497762