BuildBlock Blog: News, Projects & Information

BuildBlock Blog: News, Projects & Information. Discover the latest tips, answers to technical questions, educational videos, BuildBlock ICF projects, and more. 

BuildBlock ICF Home Comfortable in Southern Heat

    This BuildBlock ICF Home Comfortable in Southern Heat with 45% humidity inside on a 100+ degree & 90% humidity South Carolina days. The architecture resembles triple wythe masonry, which is common in Charleston architecture and engineering. The window jambs and door details have the “Classical Architecture” and Old World look. Concrete is fundamental to architecture and engineering. The ICF forms might seem novel to some, but it makes perfect sense once you see them in action. The New Orleans/Charleston style chosen for this project was dictated by the community patterns,  and ICFs made it all the more simple to

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Asked & Answered: Applying Stucco on BuildBlock ICF Forms

Asked-&-Answered

You can use nearly any finish including applying stucco on BuildBlock ICF Forms Stucco can be applied directly over the ICF, without a membrane above grade; below-grade requires waterproofing). Some contractors will use paper or house wrap behind the stucco, but it’s not necessary. For traditional stucco, a mechanical attachment is required (metal lath screwed to the wall through the plastic webs, or similar attachment). The mechanical attachment is not required when using BuildCrete or other EIFS systems. BuildCrete is a single coat product applied in 3 steps. An initial coat, essentially a scratch coat, is placed on the wall, then a fiberglass mesh is

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BuildBlock ICFs create stunning Old Florida Island Style home in Matlacha, FL

Island Style Home

Drs. Shirley and Jim Salvatore wanted an ICF home with an Old Florida Island Style. This was achieved with ICF block construction by adding wide covered porches to the ICF block shell. A metal hip roof, horizontal cement board siding painted in bright island colors, multiple windows with pocketing sliding glass doors all contributed to the island look, letting beautiful views of the surrounding bay in, on both the front and back of the home.   The Salvatore’s  home  in Matlacha, Florida incredibly energy efficient and insurance costs are low using BuildBlock ICFs. The Florida Energy Efficiency calculations score for this

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Scottish Style BuildBlock ICF Castle in Connecticut

ICF Castles as unique as they are, have been quite popular lately for BuildBlock Building Systems. This Scottish Castle in New Canaan, Connecticut is now our second ICF castle. This BuildBlock ICF Castle in Connecticut is 6,200 sq ft and is made entirely of ICFs including the obvious castle features like the turret, battlement,  parapet and crow step gables. The architect of this castle was Leigh Overland. This project was featured on local Channel 12 news see that video here:  Castles were created for protection against invaders. ICFs create this same feeling especially in ICF Castles. The castle was recently completed in December 2015 after battling

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Slagell’s Building ICF Home in Hydro, Oklahoma

The Slagell’s are Building their ICF home with BuildBlock ICFs in Hydro, Oklahoma. The Slagell’s were drawn to the idea of ICFs because of the energy efficiency and long life construction ICFs provide. Doing all the work themselves, they had to choose very closely what materials to use. They chose to use BuildBlock ICFs for their home. Bethanie says, “Everything has been very user friendly. We like that you can reverse the blocks.” The BuildBlock construction phase is finished currently with the windows and doors installed.  The home is going to be roughly 1600 sq.f  with  a very open floor plan for the

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BuildBlock Building Systems visits a BuildBlock project in Chihuahua, Mexico.

  BuildBlock Insulating Concrete Forms, (ICFs) expands manufacturing to Monterrey, Mexico. This new location increases availability of the ICFs in Mexico making BuildBlock ICF products viable for any project in the Mexico. BuildBlock CEO Mike Garrett and Latin America Sales Executive Alfonso Nieves recently spent time on a new residential project in the city of Chihuahua, located northwest of Monterrey, Mexico. They joined BuildBlock Distributor ICF México who is in charge of the project. The large three story home is being built using the GlobalBlock ICF for interior and exterior walls. ICF México General Director Daniel Rios said,      

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First ICF home in Yazoo County, Mississippi built using BuildBlock ICFs

The first ICF home in Yazoo County, Mississippi built using BuildBlock ICFs is a showcase for disaster resistant construction in the community . In Yazoo, Mississippi both local political leaders and building code officials have watched the construction of this home closely as they evaluate new building codes and severe storm resistance construction requirements. This rustic farmhouse type home sets a new standard for energy efficiency and disaster resistance and is a shining example the possibilities using BuildBlock ICFs. The beauty of this home is largely hidden beneath the surface in the intricate engineering and redundancy. Even after a detailed inspection this

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Asked & Answered: What is the expected lifetime of the expanded polystyrene (EPS) foam?

Asked-&-Answered

Expanded Polystyrene (EPS) is essentially inert. There have been multiple studies of EPS in the soil for 15 to 30 years demonstrating only minor degradation of the EPS foam. EPS foam is expanded using steam. It is the entrained air that provide the insulation value in the material. EPS is a plastic and aside from contact with hydrocarbons or exposure to UV from sunlight, it is relatively unaffected by other naturally degrading processes. Geofoam® placed in the ground for decades increased its compression resistance (strength). The lifespan of EPS is long, potentially unlimited. Most of the testing has involved placing

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White Paper- Vapor Barriers (Retarders) and Air Barriers

Air and moisture can get into a home a number of ways. Convective transfer involves moving air, such as adraft around a window or door, electrical boxes, or other wall penetrations. Diffusion refers to moisture moving through a material, similar to a sponge soaking up water. Cavity wall construction typically with fiberglass battsplaced into the cavities between studs allows air to pass through, and requires an additional, separate vapor barrier, typically polyethylene sheet (Visqueen) or kraft paper facing on the fiberglass batts. Continuous insulation (EPS foam or XPS foam) can also be used as a vapor barrier. Vapor barriers, or more properly worded,retarders, must

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White Paper- R-value and Performance of BuildBlock and BuildLock Knockdown Insulating Concrete Forms

The R-value is a measure of thermal resistance used in the building and construction industry and is generally understood to indicate how efficient the insulation value of the material or product. R-value under uniform conditions it is the ratio of the temperature difference across an insulator and the heat flux (heat transfer per unit area per unit time, QA) through it or R=ΔT/QA. Thermal resistance varies with temperature but it is common practice in construction to treat it as a constant value. (A common method is to standardize the temperature at which the values are reported. (75° typical) (1). BuildBlock

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