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C/S MetalWrap Louver delivers product integration

Centria Louvers Guest Column Oct18 Ma

Longtime industry partners, Moon Township, Pa.-based CENTRIA and Lebanon, N.J.-based Construction Specialties Inc. (C/S) have come together to launch the latest advancement in louver technology: the C/S MetalWrap Louver.

Unlike conventional louvers, C/S MetalWrap Louvers are specifically designed to integrate with CENTRIA’s MetalWrap insulated composite backup panel (ICBP) system, providing a continuous aesthetic on elevations that require both active and inactive areas.

“We saw a void in the market as an opportunity,” explains Eric Sposito, key accounts manager with C/S. “The system is designed to be a performance louver where needed and to provide true wall performance at the inactive areas—while visually achieving long runs of continuous louver blade.

“There was no other product that could provide the look and performance of this system.”

Like many product innovations, the C/S MetalWrap louver was initially developed to meet the needs of a complex project—in this case, the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center in Dallas. The mixed-medium building façade included precast, window, louver and single-skin metal panels, with over 40,000 square feet of total louver area. All in all, the building design called for approximately 16,000 square feet of permanently inactive louver area, requiring the moisture and thermal performance of an ICBP like MetalWrap.

“It didn’t make sense to put a 7-inch-deep louver over a full wall with insulation, gypsum board, air barrier, vapor retarders, flashing, sealant, etc.,” Sposito says. “So, we modified the system to be cost effective and seamlessly integrate with CENTRIA’s MetalWrap panel with the MR-300 attachment system, creating an all-in-one system.”

The C/S MetalWrap Louver system is ideal for projects that require a high-performance, insulated metal panel system behind the non-active louver space, but also have intake or exhaust performance needs. Aesthetically, the system’s continuous horizontal blades provide a marked difference versus other options, which rely on a patchwork of active louvers along the insulated metal panel façade.

“This is a very different aesthetic versus the continuous, uniform run of the louver blade in the C/S MetalWrap Louver system,” Sposito says. “With our system, the patchwork goes on behind the scenes and away from view.”

The difference between active and inactive louver areas comes down to performance. Active areas specify a performance louver that functions as an integral part of the building’s overall intake or exhaust system, where inactive areas are designated by false louver blades working in tandem with CENTRIA’s MetalWrap ICBPs.

The storm-resistant C/S MetalWrap Louver delivered an A rating in the Air Movement and Control Association International Inc. ICPBs wind-driven rain test, which establishes water-rejection capabilities of louvers in high-velocity wind conditions. Of course, the system achieves exceptional air, moisture and thermal performance in inactive areas thanks to the MetalWrap ICBPs.

MetalWrap provides an air barrier, vapor and moisture control, a durable metal drain plane, and advanced thermal performance all in one composite assembly. The system features pressure-equalized horizontal joinery and a factory foamed-in-place insulating core, with widths varying from 2 inches to 4 inches, to meet any thermal performance need. But the system’s most innovative feature is its ability to function as a backup wall for nearly any type of exterior rainscreen—from aluminum composite material (ACM) to brick, terra cotta, single-skin metal panels and others.

“MetalWrap panels provide superior thermal performance and minimize moisture and air penetration for any type of exterior system, in this case a louver blade,” Sposito notes. “MetalWrap is cost effective, thermally broken, and fully sealed—and it has a much higher thermal rating that traditional C/S black-off.”

The C/S MetalWrap Louver takes advantage an integral attachment channel to showcase louvers as an architectural feature. Both the attachment system and the panel face are painted black, providing a seamless transition between active and inactive louver areas.

Sposito says the industry’s reaction to the new C/S MetalWrap Louver has been overwhelmingly positive, from architects, contractors, and installers alike. “This product is something only CENTRIA and its dealers can offer in a package,” Sposito explains. “The integrated MetalWrap louver provides a high-performance louver along with a full wall panel system in one coordinated product.”

C/S and CENTRIA first launched the coordinated system with the MW-7315 louver, offering a 3-inch front blade across the entire façade with a 4-inch rear louver blade for active areas. C/S has since developed an even higher performance MetalWrap louver, “for when, in the rare case, the MW-7315 does not meet an air or water performance requirement,” according to Sposito.

The MW-9615 option includes a 4-inch continuous front blade over MetalWrap and a storm-resistant, vertical 5-inch blade in the rear for active wall areas. This louver takes the system a step further by breaking the active louver area down into two categories: active intake and active exhaust. Active intake utilizes the full louver system for maximum performance, while the active exhaust option relies on the front blade only—because exhausting air does not require a high performance rear louver.

“By breaking down the active part of the system to intake and exhaust, the overall system can be priced very economically, using the 5-inch vertical rear blade only where necessary,” Sposito says.

Both the MR-7315 and the MR-9615 louver models are available now.

The new C/S MetalWrap Louver marks the latest in a long line of innovations kindled by the strong partnership between CENTRIA and C/S. Both companies have a longstanding dedication to research and development of new products and process to give their customers a competitive advantage. In fact, C/S has created an entire department whose sole focus is to service CENTRIA and its exclusive Dealer Network. C/S Louvers and Sunshades are also an integrated option for CENTRIA’s Formawall line of insulated metal panels.

“The C/S and CENTRIA partnership is an integral part of the C/S exterior products business model,” Sposito notes. “While C/S sees value in the CENTRIA partnership, we strive to reciprocate that value to both CENTRIA and its customers. The partnership works because CENTRIA has many of the same goals, values, and core beliefs as Construction Specialties.”


Andrew Hardman is the marketing communications specialist at CENTRIA, Moon Township, Pa. To learn more, visit www.centria.com.