Curtain Walling: advantages and disadvantages of this system

Curtain Walling: advantages and disadvantages of this system

Choosing the best facade for your building is not an easy task, since there’s a lot to be considered. You have to think about the costs, the resistance, the maintenance, the durability and also about the aesthetics. The outer side of your building can be used to translate how your brand or your customers want to be perceived.

That’s where curtain walling comes into consideration, with its modern looks and elegance that definitely can change the style of a building.

So, if you want to better understand curtain walls and get to know its advantages and disadvantages, here are interesting pieces of information for you.

What is a curtain walling system?

When the outer walls of a building are non-structural, which means they’re not meant to hold the building’s weight, you can use curtain walling to wrap the building from outside. Curtain walls are usually glazed panels, framed in a very lightweight material and designed to support only its weight. 

This system is on-trend and is an architectural choice for many new buildings rising in big cities. Here are a few reasons why.

The advantages of curtain walls

Curtain walling is lightweight

Since these walls are non-structural, they can be made out of materials like aluminium, a very lightweight and durable choice.

And there’s more to it! Curtain walling costs more to build than window walls, that’s true. But curtain walls make the building so much lighter, its foundation doesn’t need to be able to withstand all the heavy load it would if window walls were chosen.

And, since foundations are one of the most expensive parts of a building’s structure, curtain walling can actually end up saving money in your construction site. 

Curtain walls let the light in

With all the glass used in curtain walling, natural light can find its way into the building. And what image comes to your mind when you picture glass walls combined with sunlight? 

Brighter and broader places, exactly!

Also, curtain walls not only make the space look wider but also help your company to save money in energy bills since your costs with lighting and heating will be reduced.

Curtain walls are aesthetically pleasing

Close your eyes for a minute and picture yourself passing by the City of London in all its magnitude. What comes to your mind? Let me guess: what you probably remember most are all those glass facades and how elegant all the buildings seem. 

Yes, this is one of the many things curtain walling does: it makes an impression. Curtain walls make your building stand out with a polished, contemporary look. 

Curtain walling is safe

Curtain walls are weather resistant: they can keep strong winds and pouring rain outside, making sure moisture doesn’t penetrate. Also, they’re designed to fit the building perfectly, so there’s no danger of any glass panel becoming loose. 

The disadvantages of curtain walling

Even the best products are not able to fit every situation, right? So, if you’re thinking about choosing curtain walls to your building, make sure you balance the pros and cons before ordering. And here are the cons you should have in mind.

What if too much light comes in?

Sunlight and curtain walls do make a room feel brighter. But what if it gets so bright that it causes discomfort? And what if solar heat raises the temperature of the place more than it should?

Well, there is the possibility, for sure. But all the brightness can be controlled with darker flooring or darker walls, for instance. Another way to deal with it is to simply hang translucent curtains inside the curtain walling, so the light is allowed to come in, but not in its full force.

And as for the solar heat, you can leave for the curtains to help reduce the temperature inside or you can turn up air conditioning in those few days that reach that high of a temperature.

Curtain walling needs maintenance

Making sure the glass is clean and the frames free of minerals that may have accumulated may be something you’ll have to keep in mind. But remember that correcting problems caused by water constantly permeating window walls can also be a financial issue and something to be looked after.

Curtain walls are harder to install

Since curtain walling is installed from the outside of the building, the process is subject to delay due to weather conditions.

Convinced to go for it with curtain walling? Huxley & Co can offer you a lightweight and modern looking product, that is custom-built to your needs and cost-effective. But if you’re still unsure about this choice, our team of professionals has years of experience in the business and will be happy to advise you with anything you need. Get in touch with us!