Attractive architectural objects come about when the interaction between the client, architects and the building contractors involved is in complete harmony. A perfect example of this is a residential house in Hohenems that was completed after a four-year construction period. In this case the client Marc Aberer, who also carried out the work on the façade with his company unisono, had a very clear idea of what he wanted. "Modern architecture that should blend in harmoniously with the ambience of our surroundings."

“Impressed by PREFA lightweights”

Marc Aberer is boss of a company specialised in interior and drywall construction and the renovation of old buildings in Hohenems that bears his name. PREFA products were brought to his notice by the tinsmith Markus Hörburger and the architects of Terminal in Röthis, who recommended them during the planning of his own house. "We contacted the PREFA project developer Harald Kronthaler and I very soon made up my mind to clad my house in aluminium. The advantages quickly convinced me and so it was that I carried out my first PREFA project on my own house", says Marc Aberer.

The craftsman from Vorarlberg talks about the aspects of the material selection that were decisive for him: “The visual effects and weather resistance of the products, simple mounting and of course no maintenance requirements were what made up my mind. What also really surprised me was the fact that so few people were needed for mounting the façade and roof panels. I normally work with about four people on construction sites, but for my own house I only needed two. We were all astounded by how easy PREFA lightweights are to mount."

The aluminium composite panel - a multi-talent

The choice fell on the aluminium composite panel in metallic bronze for the 400-square meter façade area that stretches up to the roof gable. “The composite panel is one of the most multifaceted products of all. Its possible uses are just about endless. These include large-scale façade and roof constructions, façade, balcony and tunnel cladding and on to the use of sandwich elements as fillers for non-bearing walls. However, the aluminium composite panels are used primarily for rear-ventilated façade constructions, as they were in Hohenems", explains Kronthaler. The properties of the 1500x3645mm composite panel with regard to rigidity and evenness convinced the builder Marc Aberer: "It is an ingenious system. What really impressed me apart from the light weight of the panels, was how flexible they are when it comes to handling, the corners, for example, can be bent so easily. Thanks to the perfect planning and consultations provided by our architects and Mr Kronthaler, we managed the mounting in such a way that no cut edges are visible – neither by the window and garage surrounds nor on the corners of the house."

Adhesive bonding of façade panels in vogue

The aluminium composite panels were mounted on a rear-ventilated façade substructure – a perfect and more ecological alternative to standard types of full thermal insulation. “After the wall structure, the wind paper and the rear-ventilation layer with the so-called "HUT-profiles" made of aluminium, that give every façade a unique visual appearance, we fixed the composite panels with open joint divisions. Optimum use of the aluminium composite panels was achieved by offsetting of the joint pattern", says Mr Kronthaler about the mounting of the façade. The composite panels were bonded with a unique and rarely used method. "Façade panels are normally riveted or screwed. But Mr Aberer decided for the moderately more expensive adhesive bonding variant that achieves "invisible" fixation - a method that is coming more and more into fashion. It is also by far the most attractive solution, because no screw or rivets can be seen. The end product is a feast for the eyes", Mr Kronthaler goes on to tell us.

Top seller on the roof

The 250-square meter roof surface was also covered with a PREFA product. Our classic roof tile was used here – a top seller among the small formats. Weighing just 2.3 kg/m² it is one of lightest but at the same time most stable of all roofing materials. The 40-year guarantee covers possible damage caused by natural environmental impacts such as breakage, rust and freezing. The roof tiles used for the house in Hohenems, in the colour anthracite stucco that gives it a uniquely attractive appearance, were laid on a full board substructure by the tinsmith Markus Hörburger. "We are proud of the perfect realisation of this project, which was given a complete PREFA system – roof, roof drainage system and façade", concludes Harald Kronthaler.

Customer recommendation:

"I decided on roofing and façade materials from PREFA firstly, because these are visually very attractive and secondly, because these are part of a well thought through system. It is quite surprising just how light the façade panels are when you mount them. They were mounted by just two of my workers, work that normally requires double that number of people. Bending of the corners so that no cut edges are visible was also new for me. And the most important aspect of all: the visual effect and appearance were realised exactly as I had expected." Marc Aberer, interior and drywall construction, renovation of old buildings

Factbox Residential House
Location: Hohenems, Vorarlberg
Construction time: 4 years
Façade area: 400 m² – aluminium composite panels
Roof area: 250 m² – roof tiles
Architect: Terminal in Röthis
Façade mounting: Marc Aberer, interior and drywall construction, renovation of old buildings
Roofer: tinsmith Markus Hörburger, Hohenems

Productbox Aluminium Composite Panels
Brief description: Aluminium composite panels are particularly suitable for interior work and façade design, both for new buildings and the renovation of old buildings. The advantages of this product really come into their own in large-scale projects that set high demands on evenness and rigidity.
Standard sizes: Thickness: 4 mm, width: 1,500 mm, length: 4,010 mm - other formats available on request
Colours: Special colours and gloss levels as required are available on request as of 500 square meters / all RAL/NCS colours
Temperature resistance: from -50 degrees to +80 degrees
Cleaning: with water, sponge or brush
Guarantee: 40 years