FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Who engineers the Bautex Wall System?
The engineer of record for the project typically specifies the reinforcing and wall design with guidance from the Bautex Team. Bautex also offers engineering services through consulting engineers. Structural engineers
Who installs the Bautex Wall System?
Bautex does not require specialty contractors and can be efficiently installed by any trade that is familiar with building any type of load bearing wall assembly. General contractors typically select one of their existing trades based on the timing and requirements of the projects. Many different types of trades have been used to build the Bautex walls, including framers, general purpose crews, masons and concrete contractors.
Bautex provides Contractor Support prior to and during construction. Go to the Bautex For Contractors page for more information.
- Where can I get Revit® or CAD tools to use with the Bautex Wall System?
Does the Bautex Wall System move during the pour like regular ICF?
No. The increased weight of the Bautex block compared to regular foam-plastic ICF allows the block to stay in place during the pour and decreases the need for extensive and expensive bracing systems.
Do you use mortar with the Bautex Wall System?
No mortar is required. Bautex Blocks are dry stacked and held in place with polyurethane foam adhesive until the concrete cores are poured and the wall is completed.
How do you ensure the concrete fully fills the cores?
Ensuring that the cores are filled with concrete is a four part process:
- Ensuring proper concrete mix design of 8” to 9” slump with a 3/8” maximum aggregate, typically pea gravel or river rock.
- Wetting the forms prior to the pour to promote good concrete flow through the cores, proper hydration, and ideal curing.
- Vibrating the concrete during the pour to ensure consolidation.
- Utilizing a probe to check the horizontal cores during the pour as outlined in the Bautex Installation Guide.
- Is there a fire rated listing for the Bautex Wall System?
What is the R-value for the Bautex Wall System and how much do I need?
The continuous R-Value of the Bautex Wall System is R-14 mass wall. This is without exterior or interior finishes. A typical Bautex Wall with brick veneer is a continuous R-18 system. In moderate to warmer climate zones, an R-value of R-12 to R-14 usually provides an ideal balance of cost and energy efficiency. In most of Texas a continuous R-14 mass wall is 2.5 times what is required by code. R-value Blog
How does the mass of the Bautex Wall System affect the energy efficiency of the system?
The thermal mass of the wall acts to absorb energy and delay transfer through the outside walls of the structure. This leads to lower HVAC operating cost than low mass systems like metal and wood framing. As a comparison, in moderate to warmer climate zones, a framed wall would need to be built to more than R-28 to perform as well as the Bautex Wall System.
How do I attach brick and stone veneer to the Bautex Wall System?
Brick and stone can be attached very quickly and easily using standard brick ties such as a Hohmann and Bernard 2-Seal™ Tie. Typically these anchors are installed pre-pour for the labor savings but can be installed after the walls have been poured. Pre-pouring eliminates hundreds of holes penetrating the air & moisture control layer during later construction steps.
- How do I install stucco over the Bautex Wall System?
- How do I install veneer panel systems over the Bautex Wall System?
What are the interior finish options with the Bautex Wall System?
Bautex may be finished on the interior with any standard finish, including sheetrock on a furring system or directly adhered to the interior of the Bautex block. Another option is standard interior plaster or PlasterMax™, a very durable and abuse-resistant plaster distributed by Bautex.
Is there rebar in every core in the Bautex Wall System?
Yes, each core contains a minimum of #4 bar, both horizontally and vertically. The engineer or designer may dictate larger rebar. All bars are centered in the core and verticals and horizontals are tied prior to the pour.
What is the recycled content of the Bautex Wall System?
The recycled content of the Bautex Block is minimum 28% by weight.
What is the Bautex Wall System’s STC rating for noise mitigation?
The base Bautex Wall System with ¼” plaster and stucco finishes on each side has an STC rating of 51.
How does the first cost of the Bautex Wall System compare to traditional building systems?
Typically, the Bautex Wall system is in line with traditional systems like metal stud and CMU block on first cost of construction. Cost savings can be found in not having to install additional insulation, the speed of construction, reducing the HVAC tonnage, and long term operating expenses. What does Bautex cost?
- How much does each Bautex Block weigh?
How much does a completed Bautex Block wall weigh?
A fully poured Bautex wall weighs approximately 52 pounds per square foot of wall, which includes the Bautex Block, rebar, and concrete.
How many different Bautex Block sizes and profiles are available?
There is one block size and configuration needed to complete a wall build. All “special shapes,” such as bond beams, lintels, corners, etc. are created in the field from the Bautex block.
How is electrical wiring typically installed in the Bautex Wall System?
Electrical and data conduit are typically installed within the 2-inch shoulder of the block on the interior or the exterior of the wall when direct applied finishes are chosen. Channels for the conduit are cut into the shoulders using a wood router tool. The conduit is then held in place using the same adhesive used to install the Bautex Block. The electrical wiring is typically installed after the wall is poured, allowing for faster electrical installation on most projects.
How is plumbing typically installed in the Bautex Wall System?
Plumbing is routed either in the 2-inch shoulder of the Bautex Block or smaller lines may be run in the cores of the block. Through-wall penetrations can be made before or after concrete placement in the 10-inch square areas of the block that are insulation only which occur every 16 inches on center throughout the wall.
How long is the warranty on the Bautex Wall System components?
Bautex standard warranty terms warrants to the person or entity ordering, purchasing or accepting delivery of Bautex goods that the goods are free from defects in workmanship and materials at the time of shipment from our factory.
How do I create a corner with Bautex Block?
There are no specialty blocks required for corner conditions as all design details are created by modifying the standard Bautex Block element. Using a saw guide makes cutting a corner block fast and easy. Place the block in the saw guide positioned on the center core of the block. Cut the block at a 45 degree angle through the central core using a hand or reciprocating saw. Remove the two halves of the block, flip one side over and glue the blocks together at a 90 degree angle. This creates a perfect corner block with a vertical core directly in the corner and using 100% of the block.
Do the Bautex Walls need to be engineered?
As a structural load-bearing wall system, the Bautex walls need to be engineered. Often the engineer of record can use the typical details and load tables developed by Bautex for the design. Bautex has also developed a Design Engineering Guide to assist engineers in the design process.
How does drywall get installed?
Direct applied gypsum board is glued to the Bautex wall using the same adhesive used to glue the block together. A perimeter bead and "X" on each sheet of gyp board is applied and then attached to the wall with a couple of drywall screws to hold it until the glue dries. This minimizes the amount of screw holes to fill and creates a durable interior finish.
How do I estimate a Bautex project?
Bautex has created the tools necessary to successfully estimate and install a Bautex project. We provide assistance with estimating and budgeting with our in-house technical services team. We also provide a comprehensive estimating checklist to ensure all portions of the Bautex build are accounted for, including Bautex materials, materials by others, labor, equipment, and necessary supplies.
How does the Bautex wall connect to the foundation?
Rebar dowels at every vertical core are the typical connection from the foundation to the Bautex wall. There are two ways to install the dowels. They can be laid out and tied in prior to the foundation pour or drilled and epoxy set after the pour. Bautex recommends drilling and epoxying so the rebar dowels can be properly located. Additional dowels are needed at jambs and pilasters.
Does the Bautex wall need to bear on a brick lug?
The Bautex wall is not a masonry wall and does not need to bear on a lug lower than the finished floor.
Does the foundation need to be designed differently?
Often times the foundation design is dictated by the soil condition. On 1-2 story buildings, the foundation can usually be designed the same as a framed building with typical grade beams. Taller walls and multi-story applications may need to have foundations designed similar to CMU buildings.
Does the Bautex Wall System have to have an air and moisture barrier?
Anytime the Bautex wall is being used as an exterior wall or interior wall that is separating conditioned space from unconditioned space an air and moisture barrier needs to be used. The Bautex block is porous and needs to the air and moisture barrier to stop the flow of air through the wall and keep any water, bulk or vapor, from entering the building.
Do I need to design the Bautex walls to course out, keeping the modular length and height?
One of the benefits of using the Bautex wall system is that even though it is a block and modular, it does not have to course out. In fact most Bautex buildings do not course out horizontaly or vertically. The blocks can be cut in the field to accomdate any length or height.
How do I install basewall trim?
If direct applied finishes are being used on the interior, a simple step can be utilized to make the install of baseboards easy. Depending on the height of the baseboard trim, strips of 1/2" plywood can be glued and screwed to the Bautex wall at the base of wall prior to the gyp board being installed. This gives the trim a nice nailer strip to nail to.
How does a demising wall attach to the Bautex wall?
As with most connections and attachments, securing to the concrete cores in the Bautex wall is key. There are many ways to achieve this both pre- and post-pour. One option is to use the Bautex anchor to provide screw attachment points on the surface of the wall at the demising wall location. The anchors are installed prior to the concrete pour and locked in once the concrete cures giving a 2"x2" attachment where it's needed.
How do I attach windows to the Bautex wall?
There are two options. One is to remove the wood bucking used to form the window during the concrete pour and attach directly to the concrete following the window manufacturer's recommendations. The other is to leave the wood bucking in the wall and attach the window to the buck following the manufacturer's recommendations.
How tall can you build a Bautex wall?
This is project dependent but generally, the Bautex walls can be built up to 20' unbraced and can go multi-story, up to 3-4 floors depending on the floor to floor heights, dead and live loads, wind loads, etc… The Bautex Wall System works really well in the majority of 1-3 story projects as a load bearing, insulated wall.
Do I have to finish the Bautex Wall? Can it be left exposed? Can it be painted?
The Bautex wall always needs to be finished to the exterior. Typically the Bautex wall is finished with either plaster or drywall to the interior. There are industrial, warehouse, storage area, and plenum space applications where a finish is applied on the interior up to 8-12’ and the upper no traffic/non-contact area is painted.
What is the typical HVAC sizing for a Bautex building?
Bautex suggests a licensed mechanical engineer designs the HVAC system for a Bautex building. The designer will run Manual J calculations to determine the appropriate sized units for the project. What we have seen as a rule of thumb is mechanical systems being sized at a ton per 800-1000 SF of space. This is dependent on many other inputs including window efficiency, rood insulation, building orientation, etc... and is why a mechanical engineer needed to determine the correct size.
What are the requirements for control and expansion joints in a Bautex wall?
Bautex is not a masonry wall. The concrete wall created by the block does not require control or expansion joints. The only time they are used are when the building has an expansion joint or when sections of walls are poured separately. There is no need for either type of joint because the wall is monolithic, there are no mortar joints, and the structural members are completely encased in insulation which reduces the expansion and contraction due to temperature of concrete not fluctuating.