Parracha, J.L., Cortay, A., Borsoi, G., Veiga, R. & Nunes, L. (2020) Evaluation of ETICS characteristics that affect surface mould development. DBMC 2020 – XV International Conference on Durability of Building Materials and Components. Barcelona, Spain. DOI:10.23967/dbmc.2020.061
External Thermal Insulation Composite Systems (ETICS) are nowadays often used in new constructions but are also one of the most frequently used thermal retrofitting solutions for buildings.These systems have several advantages such as low installation cost, ease of application and increased thermal efficiency. Nevertheless, a number of questions have been raised on their long-time durability particularly related to biodeterioration. Biological growth is strongly influenced by several parameters, such as water content, temperature, pH but also by the type and hygroscopic properties of the building materials. It is therefore essential to understand and correlate those properties with biological growth. This paper aims at evaluating some ETICS characteristics that might influence surface mould development which is recognized as one of the major groups of deteriorating organisms. The susceptibility of the surface finishing layer and thermal insulation to biological growth was assessed through natural inocula and selected fungi and, whenever possible, correlated with water absorption and drying capacity. This study is part of a wider research project: WGB_Shield (Shielding building‘ facades on cities revitalization. Triple-resistance for water, graffiti and biocolonization of external thermal insulation systems) that aims at the development of ETICS with improved durability in the urban environment. Further development on this issue are ongoing.