A Real-World Look At Magnesium Oxide Board
Check out this video for a brief rundown of a new multipurpose building material that's making its way onto job sites.
Magnesium Oxide (MgO) board is water resistant, high strength, fire proof, mold proof, and insect proof. It can be used in applications from siding and trim to drywall and tile backer, and comes in thicknesses from 1/2 in. to 3/4 in. It can be easier on tools than fiber cement. In this Tool Tech video from Fine Homebuilding’s tool and product editor, Patrick McCombe discusses the new material and demonstrates how easily screws can be sunk and countersunk into it. He warns that the heads may snap off conventional drywall screws, so you’ll want to use more sturdy screws for this material. MgO board can be cut with conventional carbide-tipped circular saw blades, bimetal jigsaw blades, and oscillating multitool blades for cutting penetrations and the like. You can also score and snap the material without too much difficulty. This product is becoming more prevalent and you may soon see it at a job site near you.
Extreme Green MgO Board
Sold by BlueLinx
Price: 1/2-in.: $1.10 per sq. ft.; 5/8-in.:$1.40 per sq. ft.; 3/4-in: $1.60 per sq. ft.
Associate editor Patrick McCombe has been testing power tools on behalf of national publications for more than 15 years, and he regularly meets with product manufacturers to try out new introductions. In the Tool Tech series, Patrick reviews the latest tools and materials, discusses building technology, and shows time-tested techniques for better, more-efficient home building.