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. 

Charis Homes Builds First Zero Energy Ready Home in Ohio with BuildBlock ICFs

zero energy ready home

Choosing BuildBlock ICFs as their primary construction system for exterior walls, the Wehrs realized they could easily build Ohio’s first Zero Energy Ready home simply, and cost effectively. Going Big AND Going Home When Chris and Lori Wehr moved to Ohio they were excited by the opportunity to build a new custom home. Chris works in the energy efficiency field so he knew that there were several building systems available that could produce exceptional results. The Wehrs approached Charis Homes, a leader in custom energy efficient  homes in Ohio, with a solid idea of how they wanted their house to

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No Air Conditioning? No Problem! Couple Builds ICF Home in Colorado.

After one summer in our ICF house, we decided we didn’t need air conditioning. When Mike and Laura Braunschmidt  started thinking about building a new home, a common theme was agreed upon: extreme energy efficiency. “Originally we were going to downsize. It’s just my wife and I so we don’t need that much space.” said Mike. But when the perfect two and half acres came available in Littleton, Colorado in a neighborhood that required homes to be 6,000 square feet or more, the decision was made to build a beautiful 7,000 square foot ranch style house. After a little research

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The BuildBlock Comprehensive Guide Waterproofing

Waterproofing ICF Homes

The BuildBlock Comprehensive Guide to ICF Waterproofing demonstrates the most effective strategies for waterproofing ICF structures.   Waterproofing ICF homes is substantially different from standard concrete construction and is commonly overlooked or installed incorrectly. The BuildBlock Comprehensive Guide to Waterproofing is a 15 page educational manual that is free to download and is intended to be used in conjunction with other BuildBlock Technical Manuals. The strategies, advice, and information apply to any ICF construction below grade, large or small. Waterproofing is the last mile in ICF construction. Even if everything else has been done perfectly, a small mistake in waterproofing can ruin the experience of

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Basic ICF Construction in 22 Steps

basic icf construction

While BuildBlock ICFs are extremely installer friendly, there are always questions when working with new material. Whether you’re a do-it-yourself home builder or a contractor looking branch into ICFs, BuildBlock is here to help. This Basic ICF Construction gallery starts with excavation and ends with the pouring of concrete. Complete with helpful tips and tricks along the way, you’ll be more than ready to plan your next ICF build. For more detailed information on each of these steps, visit the How To Build section of BuildBlock.com.    

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BuildBlock Installation Video Series: Plan Review

Plan Review

The BuildBlock ICF Plan Review gives you a great start in preparing for your ICF project. In the third installment of our Installation Video Series we’ll cover the plan review process. This video lays out much of the information you’ll need to consider before you start stacking blocks. When reviewing your plan for ICF construction you’ll need to keep several things in mind. We’ll discuss wall placement best practices, how to adjust openings, reinforcement requirements,  planning for service penetrations, and much more.  This video is intended to help you have a basic understanding of the steps you need to consider before building your

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BuildBlock Installation Video Series: Site Review

Site Review

The BuildBlock ICF Site Review gives you a great start in preparing for your ICF project. In this episode of our Installation Video Series we’ll cover one of the most important first steps for your project; site review.  This video talks about the building site and things you need to consider before building your ICF home. Topics include solar gain, aesthetics, water runoff and drainage, elevation footings and more. Knowing how much solar gain you will have on your structure is important when planning where to put your home. The amount of heat from the sun on your structure will help

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BuildBlock Installation Video Series: ICF Construction Overview

Construction Overview

The BuildBlock ICF Construction Overview gives you a great start in preparing for your ICF project. Welcome to the BuildBlock Installation Video Series ICF Construction Overview. The videos in this series are intended to cover the entire ICF construction process with important topics, tips, and techniques. This video covers many of the important steps you need to be aware of before beginning your BuildBlock ICF project. These steps include site review, solar gain, drainage, aesthetics, elevation and prevailing winds. These videos will hopefully make your project easier. Stay tuned as we’ll be publishing more steps in the building process in the coming weeks. The

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Building a BuildBlock ICF Basement

Basement

BuildBlock ICF forms are ideal for building a solid, dry, energy efficient ICF basement. This video in the BuildBlock Insulating Concrete Forms Installer Series takes you through a pre-prour review of an ICF basement. We’ll demonstrate wall stacking strategies for your basement and/or first floor walls. See each step with tips and suggestions for your project. . Basements built with ICFs are not just inexpensive space for heating systems, water heaters and laundry tubs but can also become recreation areas, Hobby rooms, offices or extra bedrooms. Because of the high efficiency of the thermal mass your basement will feel warm in

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Introduction to BuildBlock ICFs

Product Overview

The BuildBlock ICFs Product Family is perfect for your project. Get to know the amazing products that BuildBlock ICFs has to offer in this comprehensive video. ICFs are simply an insulated form for concrete that stays in place after pouring. They provide superior insulation and stand up incredibly well to natural disasters. This video starts with a general overview of how BuildBlocks’ forms work and then takes a look at our versatile catalog of products. BuildBlock offers forms in a variety of shapes and sizes to accommodate any design. And with an array of accessories for bracing, waterproofing, flooring and more, BuildBlock is

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Common Misconceptions Regarding ICFs and Current Energy Codes

There are common misconceptions regarding ICFs and the current energy codes. While many people involved in the home design, construction and inspection process are familiar with the R-value requirements of a cavity wall, most do not understand that different standards apply to ICFs. Wall Types Cavity walls are usually wood or steel framed with insulation between framing members for the outside walls. Most single family structures in the United States are built this way. Cavity walls may meet local and national building codes, but lack the performance and resilience when compared with ICF mass walls. The International Energy Conservation Code

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