Every home requires repair, particularly after a season of bad weather. One has to repair the home to make it fit for living, to prevent damage, to enhance its beauty and to refurbish it before a sale. The best method for a quick makeover is to use cladding on the exterior walls. Cladding can be used as an extra covering for plaster or bricks, which are prone to damage due to weather conditions such as rain or snowfall. Cladding boards can be easily fitted over these building materials to prevent damage. uPVC cladding, also called rigid cladding, is a popular building material in the UK and the US. It has almost become a standard in the construction sector over other components, such as metal, wooden or brick cladding, that were traditionally used.
Advantages of uPVC Cladding
Some of the advantages of uPVC cladding over other cladding options available in the market are:
- Unplasticised Poly Vinyl Chloride (uPVC) is a premium quality building material extracted through a slow manufacturing process to produce durable plastic boards. Made up of dense plastic components, uPVC cladding retains its texture, color and shape for years without any need for major repairs.
- uPVC cladding has thermal insulation properties. Unlike wooden or metal cladding, a uPVC surface helps in preserving heat inside the room. Thus, it saves energy bills for cooling or heating the room.
- Being lightweight, it is easier to handle and does not load your building with excessive weight. You can use uPVC cladding throughout the exterior surface of a building without adding any significant pressure to the foundation of the building. While using wooden, concrete or metal cladding, one has to check the load threshold of the foundation to eliminate possible collapse.
- uPVC cladding has soundproofing properties. The property of soundproofing depends on the density of the uPVC material. The higher the density, the better protection from external noise. Due to this property, it is an ideal building material for hospitals, libraries, museums and schools.
- It has impact-resistance properties. Thus, uPVC cladding can withstand strong winds, sea waves and heavy rains without any significant damage. While buying uPVC building material, look for impact resistance options.
Contrary to popular notion, uPVC cladding is not a fire catalyser. It has a high combustion temperature which inhibits the spread of fire to other areas for a longer period than normal plastic products. Also, it does not lead to the formation of fire droplets while burning. In fact, good quality uPVC building material has high chlorine content which acts as a fire retardant.
How to Install uPVC Cladding?
Installing uPVC cladding is very simple and can be done without hiring experts. There are two types of plastic cladding available in the market – shiplap cladding and V joint cladding. Both types are manufactured from the same raw material and have similar properties. The only difference lies in the shape and form of the finished product. The installation process involves fixing the first layer of the cladding to a wooden frame on the wall by nailing them. Then, cover it with a top layer to achieve high quality finished surfaces. However, if you want to install cladding on a large area, it is better to call in experts. With years of experience, they can arrange different cladding pieces into a perfect-fit. Without proper installation, one cannot enjoy the soundproofing and thermal insulation properties of it.
Before purchasing uPVC cladding in the UK, look for industry standards recommended by the British Board of Agrement (BBA). Research the market for BBA-approved manufacturers of high quality uPVC products. CSTB (French Scientific and Technical Center for Building) also certifies uPVC fascias, soffits, cladding and other roofing materials. Ensure that the product carries the BSI kitemark to make an informed and safe decision.