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What is the Use of a Demising Wall? 3 Clear Advantages for You

What is the Use of a Demising Wall?
Demising walls do a lot more than just bifurcate separate spaces. We shall find out what they are, and check out their various uses.
Satyajeet Vispute
Last Updated: Apr 22, 2018
Did You Know?
Demising walls aren't just built to separate two apartments in a residential building. They find use in construction of schools, hotels, shopping malls, commercial condos, etc.
I for one, am a proponent for the 'tear all the walls down' theory. For certain, it can benefit society. But still, I must admit that there are some walls which are better left untouched, especially if they are there to shield you from the noisy dog next door, or even the onslaught of some terrible music that your neighbor's teenage kid plays all day, when he and his friends get together for another one of their cacophonous band practices.

Popularly known as a demising wall, this useful creation of civil engineering is what helps us keep or personal spaces distinct and separated from the rest of the building. In the following sections, we shall find out what a demising wall is, and what are its uses.
What is a Demising Wall in a Building?
With city spaces getting crunched under the ever-increasing burden of human population, the lines of distinction between what is public and what is private have started to blur. Hundreds of buildings bearing thousands of apartments is a common sight in every modern city. As such, maintaining one's apartment as a truly private and personal space became a challenge. Civil engineers took up this challenge, and made several design changes, resulting in the modern-day demising walls.
The actual definition of a demising wall is - A demising wall is a dividing boundary in a building, that separates one tenant's space from that of another, and also from the common public space such as a corridor or a hallway. It is also known as a demising partition or party wall. The wall that is built between adjacent apartments, and also the one that stands between your private space and the common corridor are examples of demising walls.
Modern building code requires that tenant demising walls are built with attention towards noise insulation, tenant safety, energy conservation, etc. Modern-day demising walls are specially built to be capable of addressing all these issues.
What are the Uses of Demising Walls?
As we have seen, demising walls is the term given to the wall that separates private spaces from public spaces. But it doesn't just divide these two regions. It actually distinguishes them from one another, by not allowing elements from one side to interact with that of the other. To better understand this concept, let's look at the typical uses of modern demising walls.

1) Sound Attenuation and Insulation: They say home is where the heart is. So if one can't speak one's heart out at the place he/she calls home without the fear of being overheard, then definitely something is amiss. The converse is true as well. If in an apartment, one is constantly hearing the sounds and noises from an adjacent apartment, he/she will never feel at home while living there.

For these reasons, modern construction codes require that demising walls are built with the ability to provide sound attenuation and insulation. Typically, sound-absorbing materials such as gypsum are used to subdue sound waves, preventing them from crossing over to the other side. Also, additional framing and insulation is done to contain the noise from crossing over. Thus, demising walls insulate and check sounds between adjacent apartment spaces from crossing over.

2) Safety: Modern-day buildings are designed with one basic concept in mind - to make the most of every little square-inch of the available space. As such, the apartments within them are spaced as close to each other as is possible. The biggest drawback of this design methodology is that, the only thing separating two apartments is a wall of bricks, cement, and concrete.

Now, consider that due to the carelessness of one tenant, a fire starts in his/her apartment. Until the fire department is alerted and the authorities send forth the fire trucks, it's up to the demising wall to stop the flames from crossing over to the other tenant's apartment and charring it.

Hence, for safety reasons, city building construction requires that the demising walls be built to withstand and contain fires for at least an hour without letting it spread to the rest of the building.

3) Power Conservation: Let us consider for a minute that you don't face the above two problems, that is, your neighbor is both a quiet person and is least likely to cause a fire. Still, would that compel you to reward him/her by paying for the air conditioning of his/her apartment? I don't think so. After all, there is difference between a good Samaritan and a complete fool!

Normal walls allow heat to be transmitted through them. Thus, if you have either a heater or a cooler on, there is a chance that, along with conditioning the air in your apartment, you will be heating/cooling your neighbor's apartment as well. This, apart from burning a hole in your pocket, would be an unnecessary waste of energy.

To prevent this from happening, demising walls are built to check heat conduction through them, and thus isolate hot areas from the cold ones. For this, demising walls are made larger in terms of thickness, and also various thermal insulators are used for their construction.
Demising walls are built to perform some important functions that help keep personal spaces truly personal. They are important, not just for reasons of convenience, but also for the safety of the occupants living in modern multi-storied, multi-apartment buildings.