ICFs are the future of foundations and homes.

There is an unmistakable trend: Buyers are demanding homes that use less energy. Builders and developers are starting to take notice. Green energy efficient construction is one of the fastest growing sectors of our economy not only in North America, but worldwide. The adoption of the 2012 Energy Codes and even more stringent codes in 2015 along with extreme temperatures mean more consumers are needing greater energy efficiency. Green building products cannot be in name only. They must deliver benefits to the end user and be cost effective for the homebuilder or contractor. They need reduced construction time, waste and

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Asked & Answered: Is there an advantage to using wood bucks for window/door openings versus BuildBuck?

Asked-&-Answered

The majority of heat loss in an ICF home comes through wall openings such as windows and doors. You want to ensure that you have maintained as much insulation as possible around your openings. We have recommended V-buck for a number of years, but sadly they are no longer in business. Disadvantages of wood window and door bucking Wood is an organic food source for mold, mildew, and other hazards. Wood is a potential food source for infestations such as termites. Wood will also decay over time and there is a potential for wood to react to the chemicals in concrete causing damage. During

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BuildBlock Supports YouthBuild Boston Construction Workers of Tomorrow

2014 Construction Workers of Tomorrow, Energy Efficient Building Envelope Class 1

BuildBlock trains “Construction Workers of Tomorrow” Energy Efficient Building Envelope Class 1 using BuildBlock Insulating Concrete Forms (ICFs) technology during five day hands-on workshop. See photos from the event below. BuildBlock Building Systems joins with YouthBuild Boston (YBB), Madison Park Vocational Technical High School (MPVTHS) Carpentry Program, Roxbury Community College (RCC), and the New England Carpenters Training Fund (NECTF) in supporting their five day workshop on building Insulating Concrete Forms (ICFs). The goal of the course is to prepare students to construct the foundation walls of ICFs properly and safely under the supervision of a qualified ICF contractor. Marty Baron, BuildBlock Regional Manager

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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.  

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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 http://watkinshanger.com/ 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. https://buildblock.com/maps/idaho

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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

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

Asked-&-Answered

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

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Asked & Answered: Unfinished Basement Fire Barrier

Asked-&-Answered

What’s required for my unfinished ICF basement? The BuildBlock Intertek IRR1003, requires a 15 minute fire barrier for all EPS that is exposed to the interior of the building. This can be drywall, which is typically the most cost effective method, stucco, plaster, EIFS, wood paneling, or any other finish product with a 15 minute fire rating. A stem wall or any other ICF wall below grade would not require anything as it is below a slab, however any area that is used for living space, storage, as an air transfer with the home, or is planned to be anything more than utility

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BuildBlock Field Notes – 005 Transporting ICF Blocks

Manufacturing BuildBlock ICFs is the first part of the process. Today we will talk about how to make sure they arrive safely and ready for your project. When manufactured, the ICF blocks are closely inspected to ensure they meet strict quality standards. They are then interlocked together, stacked in bundles, and packaged for storage and transport. These ICF blocks are now ready for use in your project. All BuildBlock ICFs are sold in bundles. This makes it convenient to package and safely transport. Most all BuildBlock ICF bundles are packaged in 4-foot cubes. BuildBlock prefers to ship all products in

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EPS Foam Significantly More Energy Efficient Than XPS

There are many reasons BuildBlock ICFs are the premiere ICFs on the market, our use of EPS foam is one of those reasons.        As reported by Concrete Construction, “what makes EPS and XPS different is their manufacturing processes. EPS uses steam and the blowing agent pentane to expand polystyrene resin beads and subsequently mold them into blocks, which can later be cut to size. XPS, on the other hand, processes melted polystyrene resin through an extruder and expands it, using blowing agents. There are key differences between EPS and XPS—most importantly, moisture resistance, environmental impact, long-term R-value, compressive

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