ICF Homes Stand the Test of Time
At nearly 2,000 years old, the Colosseum in Rome is one of the oldest standing structures in the world. What is it made of? Concrete.
While we can't guarantee a home made of concrete today will last that long, homes built using insulated concrete forms have a much longer than average life span.
Insulated concrete forms (ICFs) are double insulated reinforced concrete walls using expanded polystyrene (EPS) foam insulation forms. The foam blocks are stacked as interlocking blocks, utilize traditional rebar or Helix micro strand rebar for additional strength in compression and tension. They provide well-insulated, airtight, quiet, energy-efficient building enclosures, replacing traditional wood-frame construction.
About one-third of the 124 million houses in the U.S. were built before 1960 and are thus now more than 57 years old, according to the U.S. Census Bureau.
However, research indicates that ICF houses can last 75 years or more. Concrete and EPS foam are known as some of the longest-lasting building products in worldwide use. In fact, the Canadian Standard on Durability awarded concrete walls because of their overall the resilient nature with their highest length of design service life (100 years) and the lowest maintenance requirements.
With ICFs, the concrete is protected on both sides by EPS foam, which will not lose any of its properties over time when properly protected from UV light.
Because ICF walls last so long, the life cycle cost is very good given the energy performance over the life of the building. While a wood-frame wall will perform the same functions, the ICF wall delivers overall much higher performance. For a wood frame wall to achieve the same performance as an ICF wall takes considerable extra cost for materials and labor.
For a home that will stand the test of time, talk with a Fox Blocks expert about using ICFs for your next project.
This blog was developed by Fox Blocks. All posts, sponsored and un-sponsored have been reviewed and approved by the Sustainable Community Media Editorial Team to ensure quality, relevance/usefulness and objectivity.
Companies: Fox Blocks
David Morris A Detroit native, David T. Morris, LEED® Green Associate, used his drive for entrepreneurship, innovation & new product development to develop a patented product and later took a new building product to market. In 2012, he became U.S. East Regional Manager with Fox Blocks, a division of Airlite Plastics Company, managing ICF sales in seven states. Since 2006, David has delivered more than 140 IFA/ICF training seminars to contractors, plus another 120 presentations to architects and engineers. He is a featured speaker and SME on High-Performance Buildings, and his efforts have resulted in environmentally friendly construction being specified for residential, commercial, and institutional buildings throughout the country.