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MetalWrap Reinvents Backup Wall Performance & Installation Speed for Brick, Terra Cotta, Metal, and Other Exterior Façade Materials

With little fanfare, MetalWrap from CENTRIA has quietly become the specification favorite for a growing circle of performance-minded architects. Metalmag Essentials recently caught up with Scott Bacon, CENTRIA’s MetalWrap Business Unit Director, for his take on this “back-wall revolution.” Here is what Scott shared:

CENTRIA is well-known to A+D professionals for metal exterior wall and roof systems. But more and more architects now specify CENTRIA MetalWrap as the backup wall system for nearly any exterior cladding—brick, terra cotta, metal, or any mixed-exterior design. Why the move away from traditional multi-component back-wall systems?

One And Done

Architects, building owners, and general contractors like MetalWrap because it is a 4-in-1 barrier system. One product and one trip to the wall with MetalWrap supplies the four critical barriers that provide thermal performance while virtually eliminating air, vapor and water infiltration.

No separate batt or board insulation. No exterior sheathing. No vapor barriers, vapor retarders, or building wrap. No more coordination of multiple crews or drywall exposure risk. No more breakdowns that can lead to moisture build-up, corroded studs, and mold. It’s a once-and-done process. That solves an amazing number of specification and jobsite issues, not to mention the savings in time and labor. Over two million square feet of installed MetalWrap proves it.

How much project time can MetalWrap save?

Officials at Skanska told us installing the backup wall on Boeing’s new 180,000 SF Everett Delivery Center expedited interior work there by three to four weeks and shaved about one percent off the overall contract. That’s remarkable.

Then there’s PNC Field, the triple-A ballpark for the New York Yankees affiliate in Moosic, Pa. The general contractor , Alvin H. Butz, estimated 12 weeks to enclose the new stadium. It took just five weeks with a single pass of MetalWrap.

The new 109,000 SF Lentz Public Health Center in Nashville recently opened. Officials there estimate at least 30 days saved thanks to MetalWrap. Every project is different, so it’s tough to generalize. That’s why RSMeans, the independent cost-estimating authority, is currently benchmarking MetalWrap to traditional multi-component assemblies. We believe the results will be very compelling to architects and owners.

What is the field reaction to MetalWrap? What are contractors saying?

They love it, especially the “one-and-done” simplicity and speed. They like the idea that no new tools are required, it weighs a bit less than a sheet of drywall, and requires half as many fasteners to install it. The trades instantly see the advantages. Local carpenter unions are asking us for training. They know MetalWrap is going to be specified on more and more jobs.

Is MetalWrap code compliant?

Absolutely. MetalWrap is a patented technology that complies with ASHRAE requirements and meets NFPA 285 multi-story fire test.

It’s also a big sustainability winner. Each panel contains a high level of recycled content. Installation efficiency results in very little jobsite waste. And because a single delivery of MetalWrap is required, vehicle energy use is minimal too. CENTRIA has a long history of providing sustainable, environmentally conscience building products to the industry, and MetalWrap is one of multiple products featured in our recently released inaugural series of Environmental Product Declarations (EPDs).

What about thermal insulation options?

MetalWrap is an insulated system that comes in four R-value configurations (R-14, R-20, R-21 and R-27). Thermal performance is achieved with a poured-in-place polyisocyanurate insulating core in different thicknesses, providing thermal and energy efficiency. The foam core is then encapsulated by durable steel skins, which, together, serve as the primary air and weather barrier. It’s an exceedingly tight, unified system.

What kind of support can I expect?

Our experts are at your service through every project phase—from design, detailing, bidding, pre-construction and construction. We pride ourselves on support.

Sounds good. Where should I go for more information?

Contact your local MetalWrap distributor. For contact information, email or call 1.800.229.5427. For case studies, product details, or to learn more, visit

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