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4 Benefits of Prefabricated Exterior Wall Panels for Commercial Construction

Prefab wall panel manufacturers custom build panelized wall systems in an off-site fabrication shop using advanced machine technology and following specific standards.The prefab wall panels include exterior cladding (like wood, stone, stucco or other material), fenestration, water/air/vapor barrier control systems, flashing, insulation, and structural framing. After transporting the prefabricated walling systems to the job site, workers simply lift and install the prefabricated panels according to the architect’s plans.

4 Benefits of Panelized Wall Construction

Utilizing prefab exterior walls, like Sto’s prefabrication solution, Sto Panel® Technology, can reduce construction costs, contribute to sustainability, accelerate building enclosure schedules, improve quality control, lessen onsite labor needs, and enhance job site safety. The success of a project depends tremendously on early planning for the use of prefabricated building techniques, and good communication between the architect, GC and panel manufacturer.

1. Pre Engineered Wall Panels Lessen Construction Costs

Prefab wall panels manufacturers help accelerate project delivery time, reducing overall construction costs and allowing you to realize profits sooner:

  • Efficient prefabricated exterior wall panel construction generates less waste, to save on materials.
  • Because much of prefab wall construction occurs in a factory, you can also lower your security costs by lessening the risk of theft and vandalism on the project site.
  • Prefab construction lessens construction time over traditional methods by offering efficient upfront planning, minimized delays due to on-site weather factors, reduced subcontractor scheduling delays, and the ability to manufacture the panels while the initial sitework and structural framing of the building is being completed. In fact, it can take less than half the time to complete modular construction compared to traditional building methods, which can reduce project costs tremendously.
  • Prefabricated wall panels for commercial construction significantly reduces the number of skilled labor installers required on the job site, which is particularly beneficial, as many contractors today struggle with ongoing skilled labor shortages.

2. Sustainable Panelized Wall System Manufacturers

Prefabricated wall panels can contribute significantly to sustainability:

  • Building prefab walls inside a manufacturing facility can cut raw material waste at the job site by nearly 50 percent compared to traditional construction. A survey of 800 building professionals by McGraw-Hill Construction found that 77 percent reported a decrease in construction site waste due to modular construction.
  • Prefab panel manufacturing allows for the in-house recycling of materials.
  • The controlled environment of a prefabricated factory allows for more precise construction, tighter joints, and proper storage of materials which improves the overall quality and performance of the wall system.
  • Factory-built construction of structural wall panels significantly lessens truck traffic, equipment, and material suppliers around the job site, to minimize soil disturbance and erosion of the area.

3. Panel Wall Construction Improves Quality Control

Manufacturing of prefabricated construction boards occurs in a climate controlled, indoor environment by an experienced crew and precise machine equipment, to ensure uniform quality between the sub-assemblies of the structure and conformity to building code. Traditional site-built structures depend on independent contractors’ varying schedules and skill levels, which can affect the craftsmanship and overall quality of the finished product.

Moreover, fabricators can work out flaws in the prefab walls in the factory setting before any product reaches the job site.

4. Prefabricated Panels Create a Safe Work Environment

Using prefabricated panels can improve the safety of workers and future occupants of the building:

  • The ergonomic design of indoor construction facilities improves the safety and comfort of the workers.
  • The controlled environment also provides more efficient access to tools and improved lighting.
  • Prefabricated wall panels come assembled and ready to drop into place with the help of a crane, to avoid the hazards of using scaffolds and other methods to build a multi-floor wall on-site.
  • Building walls off-site will reduce workers’ exposure to dangerous wind, rain, lightning, as well as changing ground conditions.
  • In addition, factory-controlled environments utilize dry materials, lessening the risk for problems associated with moisture, environmental hazards, and dirt, which protects workers on the construction site, along with the project’s future occupants.

StoPanel® Systems Prefabricated Exterior Wall Panels

Sto’s prefabrication solution, Sto Panel® Technology, offers finished exterior wall panels that provide a high-performing building envelope. The StoPanel® system panels contain cold-formed metal framing and other valuable components, including continuous insulation (ci), air and moisture barrier, glass mat sheathing, sub-framing, and facade aesthetic.

Sto Panel® Technology’s branded, tested, proven, and warranted prefabricated finished wall panel designs offer owners, builders, architects, and design consultants a recognizable, high-quality standard for producing and installing the exterior walls of their commercial buildings.

Cherese Mari Laulhere Children’s Village at Miller Children’s & Women’s Hospital, Long Beach, CA

StoPanel® Systems Prefabricated Exterior Wall Panels

A major challenge faced by the builder and architects involved completing the elaborate interior work on schedule. In addition, they faced exterior envelope challenges: extensive wall penetrations, bright and diverse colors and textures, precise alignment of Dri-Design metal panel joints with EIFS reveals. They also had to accommodate California seismic requirements.

Fortunately, prefabricating the exterior walls with StoPanel® Classic NExT ci and StoPanel® Dri-Design® simplified the exterior wall installation, to free up time for the interior work. Moreover, the panels’ design accommodated seismic needs, addressed critical visual alignments, and delivered the intense textures and colors essential to the design theme.

Hilton Canopy Hotel, Tempe, Arizona

Hilton Canopy Hotel, Tempe, Arizona

Kapture Prefab combined StoPanel® Classic NExT ci with StoPanel® Dri-Design® panels for the Hilton Canopy Hotel to meet the specific challenges: a tight job site, quick timeline, and unique design.

  • Surrounded by existing buildings, one only 3 feet away, workers could safely position the panels in place using a tower crane and controlled taglines.
  • StoPanel® prefabrication trimmed the schedule by three months compared to traditional construction methods.
  • A unique design element of the Arizona State University hotel included the installation of Dri-Design® metal panels on the building’s facade, which were patterned to represent the notes of the school’s fight song.

Kean University, Union, NJ

Kean University, Union, NJ

Western Michigan University chose Claremont Construction Group to work with Netta Architects to develop panel details for a design-assist delivery of the exterior building enclosure of a new six-story residential housing unit. Prefabrication, instead of traditional building methods, allowed workers to complete the exterior building envelope quickly so that they could complete the interior work during the region’s heavy snow and cold temperatures.

Installers set 48′ StoPanel® Metal ci panels on the upper four floors and Sto Backup panels on the two bottom floors. The project required 206 prefabricated wall panels. Each panel took 37 minutes to install, which significantly reduced the completion time compared to an on-site building.

Why Choose Sto’s prefabrication solution, Sto Panel® Technology?

Sto’s prefabrication solution, Sto Panel® Technology, for commercial construction provides an excellent option for efficient, sustainable, and safe construction. Precisely manufactured in-house, and delivered directly to your job site, prefab improves quality control and enhances job site safety. Sto Panel® Technology lessens construction costs by allowing you to build faster and with less labor and waste.

Download our comprehensive reference guide today to learn more about the industry shift to panelization and get more information on panelized walls from Sto.

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