Posts Tagged architect

Asked & Answered: ICF Myths, Half-Truths, and Misconceptions


  Separate fact from fiction and dispel ICF Myths, Half-Truths, and Misconceptions. ICFs are too expensive… ICFs cost 3%-7% more on average compared to using traditional wood construction. This difference can be reduced by smaller HVAC requirements, energy-efficiency tax breaks, and lower utility bills. ICFs are too complicated to use… Building with ICFs is like any other technology. Make sure your ICF installer is well trained and is familiar with the product. ICFs, in general, are simple enough for DIY and even simpler than building with wood. I can get the same efficiency with wood… Wood structures can be built


Designing Your Dream Home with BuildBlock ICFs

Minor differences and considerations from standard home designs.   How do ICFs work? ICFs are basically a stay in place form for concrete. The structural portion of the wall isn’t the foam, it is the reinforced concrete core inside. ICFs are simply a structural concrete wall, already insulated with furring attachment points in place every 6-inches horizontally. The prescriptive method of design is based on ACI-318 for slender wall concrete. Wall Thickness ICF walls are thicker than wood or metal stud framed walls. If redesigning a plan for ICFs, wall thickness will affect interior and/or exterior dimensions. The preferred strategy


Florida Homeowners Embrace BuildBlock ICFs Benefits

These Florida homeowners embrace BuildBlock ICFs benefits for hurricane and disaster resistance, construction speed, and energy efficiency. This Mediterranean style Florida home was designed to withstand hurricane force winds in the area. When the homeowner understood the safety and efficiency of the wall system, they chose BuildBlock ICFs. Their architect was able to easily incorporate the home owners visions with the practicality of the ICF system. The wood roof is insulated with Icynene foam and is secured to the wall system with embedded Simpson hurricane straps in the concrete. All doors and windows were designed with hurricane rated, impact resistant glass. The ICF


BuildBlock ICFs selected in Holy Shepherd Lutheran Church project for superior performance characteristics and ease of construction in Orinda, CA.

Holy Shepherd Lutheran Church in Orinda, California chose BuildBlock ICFs for their church. ICF was selected as the structural material for the walls of this building because it offered  superior performance characteristics and ease of construction.   Designed by Stanton Aarchitecture in San Francisco, California, this active community building includes the pastors office, work space, chapel and assembly hall. Flexibility was important. The use of ICF in conjunction with the careful orientation and placement of the windows and the high ceiling space has resulted in a space ideally suited for the multiple uses and the energy efficiency needed for the  three-season


Project: St. Mary’s Church, Carmel, IN

St. Mary's Church, Carmel, IN ICF Construction

St. Mary’s Church, Carmel, IN is using ICF for their new sanctuary. This is another great ICF project demonstrating the versatility of insulating concrete forms. This project contains tall walls, multiple curved walls, and large window openings.  


Project: ICF La Pan Home in Idaho

La Pan Home , Idaho, ICF of Idaho

Rob Stout of ICF of Idaho brings us a few shots of their latest project the ICF La Pan Home in Idaho. This home also features Watkins joist hangers, engineering specifically for this project. For more information about Watkins Hangers visit It’s always great to see another clean and professional ICF installation by our distributors. For contact information for ICF of  Idaho visit our Idaho distributor listing.


BuildBlock FieldNotes – 006 ICF Safe Rooms

FieldNotes 006 ICF Safe Rooms

We’ve all seen what happens on the news when disaster strikes: shattered homes and lives after the tornado or hurricane, smoking ash after the wildfire, and collapsed rubble after the earthquake. Disasters happen when we least expect them,but are something we need to be prepared for. We wear seat belts and have airbags because we have car accidents.  Our buildings have smoke alarms and sprinkler systems because we have fire.  We keep weather radios and have radar to keep us aware of severe weather. The majority of residential homes in the US are built out of wood.  There is a better way


Asked & Answered: What is the Prescriptive Method and why do we talk about it?


What is the Prescriptive Method? The Prescriptive Method for Insulating Concrete Forms in Residential Construction is the accepted method for installation, general engineering, and standard for ICF home design. The Prescriptive Method for Insulating Concrete Forms in Residential Construction is a document, originally drafted by the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), which has been incorporated into the International Residential Code (IRC, Section R611) and which gives a general engineering design for use with ICF, within the most common home sizes. The Prescriptive Method provides engineering tables showing reinforcement specifications for common wall heights and openings, as well as


Video: ICF Carrier Footings and Concrete Pour Preparation

BuildBlock Field Notes are technical updates for professionals and homeowners about building with Insulating Concrete Forms (ICFs). These short videos address a variety of topics. If there is something specific you’d like to know more about please contact us 866-222-2575 or


Building a Winning Team through Education

Steve Sierleja of BuildBlock South Central Texas has not only decided educating architectural students about ICFs is a good idea, he has set up a program to do just that with currently 37 students who have signed up to attend. “My feeling is that we need to educate the young up and coming architects about BuildBlock ICFs,” Steve said. Steve’s program consists of time in the classroom as well as site visits, while also building a relationship with these young future professionals.  “First, I have gotten permission to provide a 1 1/2 hour classroom presentation to the senior and junior


Newsletter Signup

Get the latest from BuildBlock!