Gypsum board is manufactured to a consensus standard, ASTM C1396, Standard Specification for Gypsum Board. This standard is referenced in building codes such as the International Building Code, International Residential Code, and the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) 5000: Building Construction and Safety Code.
ASTM International (ASTM), formerly known as the American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM), is a globally recognized leader in the development and delivery of international voluntary consensus standards. Today, some 12,000 ASTM standards are used around the world to improve product quality, enhance safety, facilitate market access and trade, and build consumer confidence.
ASTM uses an open, third-party consensus process to create standards. The process for updating the C1396 standard draws equally from representatives with manufacturing, material application, and general interest backgrounds. The Gypsum Association participates by lending engineering and expertise to 11 of ASTM’s Committees, including Committee C11 on Gypsum and Related Building Materials and Systems.
Another standard, ASTM C1264, Standard Specification for Sampling, Inspection, Rejection, Certification, Packaging, Marking, Shipping, Handling, and Storage of Gypsum Panel Products provides strict guidelines that ensure only the highest quality gypsum board is sold to the public and that the product remains safe and secure not only throughout the manufacturing process but also after it reaches in your home or office. This standard requires that each gypsum board or package of boards be clearly marked with information regarding product thickness and the name of the producer, as well as other information. In 2011, this standard was strengthened to require each individual sheet of gypsum board manufactured to the standards of the ASTM C1396 have the following information clearly printed on the back surface of each board:
- The name of the manufacturing company or a unique code identifying it.
- A code identifying the date and time of manufacture.
- The country of manufacture as designated by a special three letter code (USA for the United States).
This updated standard applies to all gypsum board sold in the United States and Canada. It helps consumers, construction companies, and building inspectors identify the origin of a particular piece of gypsum board and provides assurance that only high-quality gypsum is being used in the construction of homes or offices.
A complete listing of the ASTM standards governing gypsum panel products are available in GYPSUM PANEL PRODUCTS TYPES, USES, SIZES, AND STANDARDS, GA-223.