What Are Insulated Metal Panels (IMPs)?


Sep 27, 2023

Insulated metal panels (IMPs) have become popular over the past few years, especially within the construction industry. They are incredibly easy to install, offer effective thermal insulation, impressive structural integrity, and even look great!

If you would like to learn what insulated metal panels are, you have come to the right place. Not only will we provide a detailed breakdown of what they are and the many benefits they offer, but we will also provide a recommendation for some of the highest-quality insulated metal panels on the market today!

What Is an Insulated Wall Panel?

Installation of insulated metal panels on pharmaceutical warehouse

As the name implies, insulated metal panels are designed to reduce heating and cooling costs by helping to regulate indoor temperatures. Not only do they increase energy efficiency, they are incredibly easy to install, especially in comparison to framing a wall with lumber and drywall or by building one from poured concrete or stacked brick.

In most cases, each insulated wall panel will feature three distinct layers, as this improves the strength and durability of the panel, as well as its insulating properties.

The first layer is a durable, external-facing building material, while the second is an insulating core, which can be made from various materials. Finally, the insulated core is sandwiched between the external facing panel by a third layer: the internal facing building material. This uniquely layered design explains why insulated metal panels are also known as sandwich panels.

What Are the Three Layers of an Insulated Wall Panel Made From?

While the exact materials can vary from manufacturer to manufacturer, most use somewhat similar materials.

The External Facing Layer

The external facing layer needs to be made from a durable and weather-resistant material, as the portion of the insulated wall panel must withstand the elements. This can be a coated, corrosion-resistant sheet metal, fiber cement, fiberglass reinforced plastic, or a combination of materials.

The Internal Facing Layer

The internal facing layer is often made from the same materials as the external facing layer; however, many feature a more aesthetically pleasing surface layer because this is the portion of the insulated wall panel that will be visible from the inside of the building.

The best options also feature mold and mildew-resistant coatings, as this allows the panels to be practical options for buildings where sanitation is essential, such as any facility where food is stored or prepared.

The Insulating Core Layer

While the insulating core layer can be constructed from various materials, most will use a rigid foam material, as these materials offer relatively high R-values, which is a measurement used to describe how capable a material is of reducing heat transfer through it.

The best insulated metal panels tend to use expanded polystyrene (EPS) for their insulating core layer, but it is also possible to find insulated metal panels that use polyurethane (PUR) or polyisocyanurate (PIR).

Regardless of which materials are used for the three layers, once they have been manufactured, they are permanently bonded together using a long-lasting, temperature-resistant adhesive.

This is actually part of the reason why insulated metal panels last so long. Once the layers are fused, the finished panel acts as a sturdy and solid panel that will not warp, chip, or otherwise deteriorate over time.

What Are the Advantages of Insulated Metal Panels?

rockwall fire rated wall panel curb diagram

Part of the reason why insulated metal panels are revolutionizing the construction industry is the simple fact that they offer so many practical benefits over alternatives. The following are just some of the advantages that insulated metal panels offer:

1. Quick and Easy Installation

Since insulated metal panels are pre-assembled, they can be installed quickly and efficiently. Not only does this mean much faster completion times for large-scale construction projects, but it can also mean reduced labor costs.

The faster turnaround is also incredibly beneficial for commercial buildings, as replacing walls with insulated metal panels does not necessitate a lengthy or disruptive shutdown of operations.

2. Versatile Applications

Insulated metal panels can be used for a wide range of applications. Thanks to their customizable dimensions, and the fact that they can insulate against both heat and cold, they can be used across various industries.

Even the trims and angles can be adjusted to meet the requirements of just about any building. They can be used for anything from agricultural buildings to breweries and food preparation facilities.

3. Durability

Once the panels have been installed, they are designed to be long-lasting and completely maintenance-free. This is because they are made from durable materials that can withstand almost anything.

4. Significant Energy Savings

Naturally, one of the main advantages of insulated metal panels is their ability to insulate. Their high R-value remains the same over the panels’ lifespan, so they can cut down on energy expenses and even pay for themselves over time.

5. Hygienic Qualities

The best insulated metal panels have easy-to-clean internal facing layers. They are also designed to resist mold and mildew, so the best options meet CFIA sanitation standards. These qualities make them suitable in industries where food is stored and prepared.

In addition to the benefits mentioned above, insulated metal panels also offer impressive soundproofing, outstanding chemical resistance, and they are much more sustainable than alternatives that need to be replaced regularly.

With so many practical advantages, it is no wonder that insulated metal panels are growing in popularity across a wide range of industries.

Which Insulated Metal Panels Should You Choose?

Isowall insulated metal panels are some of the highest quality wall panels on the market today. They use an expanded polystyrene core to provide outstanding insulation and energy efficiency. They are also incredibly durable and have a unique, continuous lamination design that allows them to sit flush with each other.

You can also get the thickness, length, and width you need so that they can work with almost any project. They have an aesthetically pleasing profile designed to look good for the entire lifespan of the panels.

To learn more about Isowall insulated metal panels, click the link below:

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Final Words

Insulated metal panels offer a variety of benefits and very few drawbacks. If you are looking for a versatile option that can be installed quickly while still offering outstanding insulating properties, consider insulated metal panels.

For additional information, consider reading What You Need to Know When Using Isowall Insulated Panels.