HomeRAB Pre-Cladding revolution in Otago?
When Ken Cookson first started using HomeRAB Pre-Cladding seven years ago, you could count Dunedin HomeRAB Pre-Cladding users on the fingers of one hand. Now he’s seeing HomeRAB Pre-Cladding throughout subdivisions in the region. Clearly, this is a new pre-cladding practice that is catching on.
Ken has been building since the early 70s and has clocked up more than 50 new home builds during his career. While you might think you can’t teach a senior builder new tricks, he was more than willing to give up flexible underlays when he discovered James Hardie HomeRAB Pre-Cladding in 2009.
“I liked the idea of a solid board for pre-cladding. It doesn’t tear or flap around, and it adds structural strength as well as a barrier against the weather”, says Ken.
To make a builder’s life easier, HomeRAB Pre-Cladding can be left exposed for up to 90 days during construction. It means weather events are less likely to cause sleepless nights, for the builder as well as the home-owner.
“I remember one building project where we had a big easterly storm during construction. The HomeRAB Pre-Cladding was up, but not the external cladding. In spite of all the driving rain and wind, the wall cavities were dry as a bone.”
Ken also praises HomeRAB Pre-Cladding’s ability to keep rodents out of wall cavities.
“I’ve seen some sights during my time, while doing renovations and repairs to existing homes. When rats and mice can chew their way through to the inside of walls, they make themselves at home. Logic tells me it’s a lot easier for a rat to get through building wrap than HomeRAB.”
While HomeRAB is a slightly more expensive option than flexible underlay, Ken says it contributes to a better-quality structure.
“I always tell customers that I’m planning to use HomeRAB, even if it wasn’t specified by the architect. They need to know because there is some extra cost involved, however inevitably they’re happy to wear the extra expense because they’re getting a better home out of it.”
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