Frequently asked Kalwall questions
Our role is to ensure you have all the information required when considering to use Kalwall and as such, have brought together many of the most frequently asked questions regarding the system. If however you cannot find the answer to your own question, please ask by clicking on the "ask a question" icon at the top right of this page.
Can Kalwall control direct sunlight?
Kalwall diffuses light so efficiently that even direct sunlight is converted to even, glare free illumination. It gives a soft restful light in work areas, free from sharp shadows and contrast. The lighting environment created helps to prevent eyestrain, increases efficiency in tasks and can save on building energy costs.
How will Kalwall work on cloudy days?
Even on cloudy overcast days, Kalwall will harness natural daylight and transmit it into the building in surprising large volumes. Panels can be selected to transmit various percentages of light according to individual requirement or building / facade orientation. We can assist the designer with panel specification selection by completing a free bespoke daylight analysis - for more information on daylight and glare analysis completed by Kalwall click here:- Daylight modelling.
What thermal performance (U-value's) can Kalwall achieve within my project?
As all panels are made specifically for your project, great flexibility can be achieved on each opening within the project. The Kalwall system offers U-values ranging from 1.25w/m2k to 0.28w/m2k which are among the lowest offered from any light transmitting material on the market place.
Can Kalwall assist in the management of heat build up (solar heat) within my space?
Yes. Kalwall's low level of solar heat transmission and re-radiation results in a comfortable environment and will reduce air conditioning costs for the project. Also, given the broad diffusion of light over a large area, Kalwall reduces or eliminates the requirement for sun-blinds, shades or louvres.
What is the life expectancy of Kalwall and how does it weather?
Durability tests carried out for the European Technical Approval resulted in a predicted life of 25 years for the product. Given Kalwall's proprietary technology, colour, erosion resistance and light transmission will be maintained. UV protection is built into the full thickness of the face sheets with colour stable resin. Kalwall do not rely on gel-coats or other superficial, sacrificial coatings. Fibre exposure and fibre bloom are prevented by the inclusion of a glass veil laminate embedded in the outer face sheet.
How robust is Kalwall as a material?
Kalwall is highly impact resistant to impact - excellent for use in sports halls, schools, public buildings and other buildings or areas subject to high traffic or vandalism. Should you consider your proposed use to be "high risk" then we can offer High Impact Kalwall which has an reinforced external face sheet which is four times stronger than the regular external face sheet. The best way to assess how Kalwall performs is to request a sample and test it for yourself - call us on 0141 812 0196 and we would be happy to provide a sample.
How does Kalwall react with fire?
Kalwall has excellent fire retardant properties. It is a thermoset material, which unlike thermoplastics or glass , will not drip, melt or shatter in a fire. Kalwall can achieve an internal Reaction to Fire rating of B,s2-d0 when tested to EN13501 and EXT.S.AA for roofs (BS 476 Part 3) and Broof (t4) when tested to EN 13501 part 5. Kalwall panels can be specified as Factory Mutual (FM) approved, Class 1 walls and roofs.
How long is a typical installation?
This is obviously wholly dependent upon the scale of the project however Kalwall is a light weight material, usually between 12 and 16 Kg/m2, thus minimising the need for supportive structure. Large panels can be installed very quickly thus making your building wind and water tight quicker thus saving the Main Contractor prelim time and money. Access for installation is preferable from MEWPS thus allowing panel distribution to be easier and safer handling of the material.
Does Kalwall have a BREEAM Rating?
Kalwall does not have a specific BREEAM rating however has been used in many buildings which has achieved BREEAM Excellent rating. As Kalwall is an American material, LEED is the BREEAM equivalent with many overlaps evident when both rating systems are considered. To assist, Gifford, one of the UK's leading environmental and engineering consultancies, was appointed to undertake a performance appraisal of Kalwall. A range of performance areas were considered within Gifford's independent Sustainability Appraisal Process (GSAP), which covers wider reaching aspects than the BREEAM Assessment. Please contact us for a copy of the GSAP for use when justifying the credentials of Kalwall.
What maintenance will be required for Kalwall over its life span?
Kalwall is virtually maintenance free in normal circumstances. Rainfall is usually sufficient to keep Kalwall free from dust and dirt. A periodic soapy water wash and clear water rinse is all that is needed both externally and internally. For most roof applications, additional external cleaning apparatus is usually unnecessary.
How much does Kalwall cost?
Given the wide and versatile use of Kalwall (walls, roofs, canopies, internal applications, flat or curved panels) we would be delighted to provide project specific budget costs and as such request that you contact us with your project details. We can provide budget costs based upon varying U-values and light transmissions.
We have heard Kalwall has a long lead time from order until the material arrives on site, is this true?
This is one of the common misconceptions with Kalwall.
Depending on the design, complexity of the project and drawing approval route sought by the architect, Kalwall can be on site within the time scales listed below:-
Standard full approval (1 week) of manufacture drawings :- 18 weeks from order and construction issue drawings and information
Express lane approval (1 day) of manufacture drawings:- 12 weeks from order and construction issue drawings and information.