Colin St John, Commercial Director, explains the who, what and why of Freefoam Building Products.
Tell us a little about who Freefoam are?
Freefoam Building Products was started in Ireland over 25 years ago. The company expanded, manufacturing warehouse and distribution facilities in the UK in 1999, and now supply the Irish, UK and continental markets with PVCu and PVCue building products including fascia, soffit, guttering, cladding and internal panelling systems. Freefoam is still an independently owned business today, which allows us to be really reactive to the market place and put customer needs at the heart of what we do.
So expand a bit on the products you manufacture
Our core range is PVC fascia and soffit in a wide variety of widths, styles and colours, suitable for both new build and retrofit projects. We offer boards in several thicknesses to provide either a full replacement or capping over option. Soffit is available in solid and hollow choices and is also available with pre-vented strips allowing for quick and simple fitting. We also offer guttering, cladding and internal panelling giving builders a comprehensive range of low maintenance, long lasting products.
Can you tell us a bit more about your guttering range?
We know that builders will contract out some elements of a project but often fit guttering themselves. Whilst guttering is often seen as a commodity, with one brand very much like another, Freefoam has developed a series of clever innovations to make life easier for builders. Our guttering has a white inside. This helps to minimise heat absorption and heat build-up, reducing the expansion and contraction. We use a film to protect gutter in transit and fittings include long-life compressible seals to create flexible water-tight joints. Once you’ve tried it you won’t go back!
How long will your products last?
PCV is the perfect material for building products. It is strong and stable, and we make sure it stays that way. Situated at the top of a building fascia, soffit and guttering are very exposed to the sun and, like our skin, UV can damage products. We make our products using a natural mineral called titanium dioxide. This is the same stuff that is used in sun creams. It keeps our products white and bright for up to 50 years.
Are there any new developments our readers can use to build more business?
Grey roofline is the major new change in our industry. Traditionally, since PVC began to replace wood as the preferred option for roofline, white has been the only option. With changing trends in house design colour roofline to match window frames and doors is a growing part of the market. We specialise in producing a wide range of colour fascia and soffit allowing builders to meet the changing demands of customers by offering more choice.