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10 things you should know about plasterboard

  1. Plasterboard is basically an inner layer of gypsum sandwiched between two outer layers of lining paper including various additives in the gypsum layer and varying the weight and strength of the lining paper, will give the finished board different properties
  2. Gypsum is made up of crystals containing a small amount of water (known as water of crystallisation). In a fire, this water is driven-off, helping to keep the temperature of the fire down, and preventing rapid fire spread. Plasterboards, such as Gyproc FireLine, are therefore used extensively for fire protection proving up to 4 hours protection in some special multi-layer system applications.
  3. Plasterboard is good for cutting down noise transmission particularly airborne sounds such as speech and music. High performance plasterboards, such as Gyproc SoundBloc, have a specially designed core that provides even better insulation against sound.
  4. Whilst standard plasterboard is ideal for most environments, it shouldn't be used in constantly wet conditions. For kitchens, bathrooms and similar wet areas, Gyproc Moisture Resistant, specially designed with silicone additives in the core, or Glasroc H TILEBACKER, a highly water resistant Class A1, non-combustible glass reinforced gypsum board, should be used.
  5. Glasroc F MULTIBOARD, a glass-fibre reinforced gypsum board, is not made in the traditional way with lining paper. Instead, the boards are strengthened with layers of glass fibre immediately below each surface. This gives them good all-round performance, a high quality durable plaster finish, and enables them to be easily bent for use on curved structures. They are excellent for semi-exposed areas, such as soffits and the like.
  6. Most common plasterboards come with the option of either tapered edge or square edge. Tapered edge boards are ideal for either jointing or skimming, while square edge is generally used for textured finishes.
  7. Plasterboard generally comes in 1200mm wide sheets, designed to suit the standard 600mm stud spacing used in housing today. Other widths are available for specific systems for instance 900mm widths for the British Gypsum GypWall RAPID metal stud housing partition system and 600mm sheets for use where space is limited.
  8. Most standard plasterboard has one ivory face and one brown. The liner on the ivory face is specially designed for plastering plaster should not be applied to the brown reverse face. Paper liners are generally made from recycled paper a big plus for the environment.
  9. Joint cracking on plasterboard ceilings is almost invariably caused by warping of the joists as the wood dries out. Screw fixing the boards will generally prevent the problem occurring. If you want to go further use the British Gypsum Gypframe RB1 Resilient Bar or Gypframe RB2 SureFix Bar, designed to upgrade ceilings to Building Regulations Approved Document E acoustic standards, which will virtually eliminate the chance of movement problems.
  10. Although you can apply wallpaper directly to the paper surface of plasterboard, ideally the surface should first be sealed with one coat of Gyproc Drywall Sealer to allow easy stripping at a later date.

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