New guidance from the Consumer Product Safety Commission and the Dept. of Housing and Urban Development, released on April 2, recommends homeowners replace all potentially defective drywall as well as electrical components, wiring, gas-service piping, sprinkler systems and smoke and carbon monoxide alarms that may have been affected by the drywall. Also released on April 2 were preliminary data from a Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory study measuring chemical emissions from drywall. The results show a clear distinction between drywall made in China in 2005 and 2006 and non-Chinese wallboard samples from 2009. Certain Chinese samples had hydrogen-sulfide emission rates 100
The market is generally healthy and steadily growing, and margins are up for large specialty contractors. Further, advances in design tools and owner demand for collaboration are giving subcontractors a seat at the table early on in projects.