1) What is the difference between Type X and Type C wallboard?

Type X and Type C boards have UL designations.
Type X board has glass fibers in the core for enhanced fire performance and is tested in specific fire-rated assemblies.
Type C is a superior product: It meets all the requirements of the Type X board and is further enhanced with additional glass fibers and other core ingredients for an even greater level of fire performance.
If the design calls for a Type C board, a Type X board cannot be used as a substitute.

2) What are the Continental UL Shaftwall designs?

Continental’s main shaftwall design is UL Design V481 and includes 1-hour, 2-hour and 3-hour walls.
For area separation walls, the design is UL Design U388.
Continental shaftliner may also be used in UL Designs U428, U429, U469, U505, U529, V433 and V472.

3) What is the fire rating on Continental’s Firecheck® Type X or Firecheck Type C wallboard?

Gypsum board itself does not have a fire rating. Fire ratings are based on a tested and listed assembly including the framing to which the board is attached (wood or steel); board type used; the number of layers and how it is attached including fastener type; length; and spacing. All Continental fire-resistant gypsum board is listed with Underwriters Laboratories (UL). The Continental UL listings are available at the UL on line Fire Resistance Directory.

4) What is the R-value of gypsum wallboard?

Gypsum board does not have a significant R-value but does make a small contribution.
1/2" gypsum board has a 0.45 R-value and 5/8" gypsum board has a 0.58 R-value.

5) What is the difference between Protecta AR® 100 with Mold Defense® and Protecta HIR® 300 with Mold Defense?

Continental 5/8" Protecta AR 100 is an abuse resistance panel. It has a higher density than regular drywall and a core reinforced with glass fibers. Continental 5/8" Protecta HIR 300 is formulated similar to above but is additionally reinforced with a fiberglass mesh on the back side to significantly increase the soft body and hard body impact resistance. Both are abuse resistant gypsum boards that meet ASTM C1396 and are tested for abuse resistance per ASTM C1629 (Testing of Abuse-Resistant Interior Gypsum Panel Products). They both are treated for mold resistance and score a 10 out-of 10 per ASTM D3273. They are listed with Underwriters Laboratories (UL) for use in fire-rated assemblies.

6) What are the different types of abuse resistance for gypsum board?

The ASTM standard C1629 defines four types of abuse resistance:
1) surface abrasion
2) surface indentation
3) soft body impact
4) hard body impact

ASTM C1629 also defines three increasing levels of resistance for each type of abuse resistance.
The abuse resistances as per ASTM C1629 of Protecta AR 100 and Protecta HIR 300 are summarized below.

Soft Body
Hard Body
AR 100
Level 3 Level 1 Level 2 Level 1
HIR 300
Level 3 Level 1 Level 3 Level 3

7) For what types of applications are Protecta AR 100 and Protecta HIR 300 best suited?

Protecta AR 100 and Protecta HIR 300 are designed for use in areas that require a higher resistance to abrasion, indentation and impact penetration. Applicable areas include:

• Schools and dormitories
• Hospitals
• Hotel lobbies
• Corridors
• Cafeterias
• Gymnasiums
• Mechanical/maintenance areas
• Other high-traffic and public areas

Additionally, Protecta HIR 300 can be used in elevator and stair enclosures in high-rise buildings as required by code.

8) How does BISON BOARD™ contribute toward LEED certification?

All Continental gypsum board has a high post-consumer recycled content. The recycled content for paper-faced and glass-mat-faced boards are 99% and 94% respectively. For specific information by plant, refer to the plant-specific LEED information sheets or use our customizable LEED tool at

9) Can I use ½” LiftLite® on ceilings with supports at 24” on center?

Yes, ½” LiftLite meets the requirements of a ½” Gypsum Ceiling Board per ASTM C1396 Section 12 and may be used on ceilings with supports at 24” on center. When using ½” LiftLite (or any gypsum board) on ceilings in winter construction, do not use temporary gas or propane heaters until the insulation is in place. Without insulation, water vapor will condense on the back side of the board, which could lead to sagging.

10) What is the difference between 5/8” 30 Minute, 5/8” Lightweight 60 Minute and Traditional 5/8” Type X Board?

Gypsum board itself does not have a fire rating, although these products are often referred to with terms like “5/8” 30 Minute” or “5/8” 60 Minute.” 5/8” 30 Minute board is a light weight 5/8” board that is not a Type X board. It was developed to be used in a 30-minute fire rated assembly with a single layer on each side of either wood or steel studs. The Continental UL Design for this is U424. It cannot be used in any application calling for a 5/8” Type X board. 5/8” 30 Minute board may be used in non-fire-rated applications and for ceiling applications calling for a 5/8” board for sag resistance (not fire rated).

5/8” Lightweight 60 Minute or Lightweight TypeX boards are, as the names imply, lighter versions of traditional Type X gypsum board. They meet the ASTM definition of 5/8” Type X but still may not be suitable for use in all fire-rated designs listing traditional 5/8” Type X. Check the specific UL Design to determine which boards are allowed.

11) What is the difference between synthetic gypsum and natural gypsum?

Synthetic gypsum is a byproduct of an industrial process, most often from the scrubbing of coal burning power plants. It is produced by injecting limestone or lime into the smoke stack, which when combined with sulfur, forms gypsum. Natural gypsum is gypsum that was deposited in former sea beds and must be mined from the earth. Both synthetic and natural gypsum are chemically the same: CaSO4∙2H2O.

12) Can Continental Building Products’ gypsum board be used on projects specifying Lafarge gypsum board in North America?

Yes, Continental Building Products purchased the North American gypsum assets of Lafarge North America in September 2013. The sale included all formulations, product trade names and technical property including UL listings and fire-rated designs. Continental is now listed with UL in all of the UL Designs formerly listing Lafarge. For more information, see our History.