Fluid Applied Air Barriers: 10 Benefits for Commercial & Residential Construction


The numer­ous ben­e­fits of a cor­rect­ly applied, high-qual­i­ty flu­id-applied air bar­ri­er (FAAB), like Bau­tex AMB 20, in com­mer­cial and res­i­den­tial con­struc­tion, guar­an­tee a struc­ture that is durable, ener­gy-effi­cient and healthy. A fur­ther advan­tage of the Bau­tex AMB 20 FAAB, over oth­er FAABs, is the Bau­tex AMB 20’s flex­i­bil­i­ty in the tim­ing of appli­ca­tion.

Air and Moisture Control Methods for Commercial and Residential Construction

Builders of both com­mer­cial and res­i­den­tial struc­tures uti­lize sev­er­al meth­ods to con­trol mois­ture and air infil­tra­tion with­in a wall sys­tem, includ­ing FAABs, com­mer­cial and house wraps, peel and stick mem­branes and lam­i­nat­ed gyp­sum board with taped seams. How­ev­er, there are lim­i­ta­tions to some of these prod­ucts.

  • Com­mer­cial and House Wraps: Windy days pose prob­lems for com­mer­cial and house wraps because they are sus­cep­ti­ble to dam­age when flap­ping in the wind. Wraps also have many joints and are prone to pen­e­tra­tions through the wall that may not receive prop­er atten­tion.
  • Lam­i­nat­ed gyp­sum board: Lam­i­nat­ed gyp­sum board with taped seams is sim­ple to apply; first, the board goes up, and the next and last step is to tape the seams. The prob­lem with this method is the longevi­ty of the seam tape is unknown.
  • Peel and stick mem­branes: Peel and stick mem­branes are the most expen­sive of all the prod­ucts, includ­ing flu­id-applied air bar­ri­ers.

FAAB - The Better Option for Moisture Control in Commercial and Residential Construction

Flu­id-applied air bar­ri­ers offer many per­for­mance ben­e­fits and are an excel­lent option over com­mer­cial and house wraps, peel and stick mem­branes and lam­i­nat­ed gyp­sum board with tape seam.

Ten Benefits of Fluid Applied Air Barriers For Commercial and Residential Construction

  1. Flu­id-applied air bar­ri­ers pre­vent air leak­age which lessens ener­gy costs and con­den­sa­tion and improves occupant’s com­fort.
  2. Flu­id-applied air bar­ri­ers cre­ate a seam­less mois­ture bar­ri­er. A seam­less mois­ture bar­ri­er reduces instal­la­tion errors that can cause holes, tears, or lap joints.
  3. Flu­id-applied air bar­ri­ers pro­tect the sheath­ing and rough open­ings from weath­er dam­age dur­ing and after con­struc­tion, which min­i­mizes repair or replace­ment costs.
  4. Flu­id-applied air bar­ri­ers are sim­ple to install and reduce labor costs because appli­ca­tion of FAABs needs no spe­cial tools or skills.
  5. Flu­id-applied air bar­ri­ers are durable and will not tear or lose its effec­tive­ness when exposed to out­side ele­ments dur­ing and after con­struc­tion.
  6. Flu­id-applied air bar­ri­ers pro­vide struc­tur­al and full adher­ence, which cre­ates rigid­i­ty and sta­bil­i­ty against strong wind events.
  7. Flu­id-applied air bar­ri­ers dou­ble as an air bar­ri­er and mois­ture bar­ri­er in the wall assem­bly.
  8. Flu­id-applied air bar­ri­ers allow for pres­sure-equal­ized or pres­sure-mod­er­at­ed wall design, which lessens the risk of rain­wa­ter pen­e­tra­tion through the wall sys­tem.
  9. Flu­id-applied air bar­ri­ers are less expen­sive than peel and stick mem­branes.
  10. Most Flu­id-applied air bar­ri­ers includ­ing the Bau­tex AMB 20 are water based so safe to use and easy to clean-up.

Bautex AMB 20 - A Best Practice for a Fluid-Applied Air Barrier

There are many flu­id-applied air bar­ri­ers prod­ucts on the mar­ket today, which dif­fer main­ly in their thick­ness. The Bau­tex AMB 20 flu­id-applied air bar­ri­er falls in the mid­dle for thick­ness. Bau­tex AMB 20 works excep­tion­al­ly well on rough­ly tex­tured prod­ucts, like Bau­tex Blocks, but also on oth­er wall sys­tems like con­crete mason­ry units, (CMU), wood and Dens­Glass sheath­ing.

The Bau­tex Block is com­posed of poly­styrene and cement and cre­ates a very ther­mal­ly effi­cient prod­uct. How­ev­er, because the Bau­tex Block is porous with dim­pling in the block, it requires an air and mois­ture bar­ri­er mate­r­i­al, like the Bau­tex AMB 20, to ensure suf­fi­cient cov­er­age.

Impor­tant­ly, what sets Bau­tex AMB 20 apart from oth­er flu­id-applied air bar­ri­ers is its flex­i­bil­i­ty in the tim­ing of appli­ca­tion. Con­trac­tors can apply the Bau­tex AMB 20 pre- or post-tap­ing, or caulk­ing of the wall. An attribute that is quite help­ful since often project’s sched­ules don’t go as planned.

Bautex AMB 20 Air and Moisture Barrier

The Bau­tex AMB 20 prod­uct line is a sin­gle-com­po­nent sys­tem sprayed direct­ly to the exte­ri­or wall sub­strate in a sin­gle 40 – 45 mil wet coat. Appli­ca­tion of Bau­tex AMB 20 to Bau­tex Block, con­crete, con­crete block (CMU) or exte­ri­or sheath­ing mate­ri­als using a stan­dard air­less spray sys­tem is quick and effi­cient.

Appli­ca­tion of the Bau­tex AMB 20 flu­id-applied air bar­ri­er on the Bau­tex Block Walls ensures the com­mer­cial or res­i­den­tial build­ing’s enve­lope has four con­trol lay­ers: bulk water rejec­tion, air infil­tra­tion, water, and vapor per­me­abil­i­ty, and ther­mal.

Notably, the ther­mal com­po­nent of the Bau­tex Wall sys­tem pro­vides a tremen­dous amount of insu­la­tion pow­er that is two and a half times what the 2018 ener­gy code requires in Cen­tral Texas. Place­ment of the Bau­tex air and mois­ture bar­ri­er prod­uct on top of the Bau­tex Wall is the last step to pro­vid­ing both bulk water rejec­tion and pro­tec­tion from air and mois­ture infil­tra­tion.

The many ben­e­fits a high-qual­i­ty flu­id-applied air and mois­ture bar­ri­er, like Bau­tex AMB 20, in com­mer­cial and res­i­den­tial con­struc­tion, ensure mois­ture and air man­age­ment in wall assem­blies. Prop­er appli­ca­tion of the FAAB is also essen­tial to the integri­ty of the struc­ture, indoor envi­ron­men­tal qual­i­ty, and ener­gy effi­cien­cy of com­mer­cial and res­i­den­tial build­ings. Please vis­it Bau­tex Wall Sys­tems for more infor­ma­tion on the ben­e­fits of flu­id-applied air bar­ri­ers.