Insulated concrete forms (ICF) are the talk of the building industry. They enable building sturdy structures without wooden frames, and the strength of the technique comes from the reinforcing bar (rebar) and concrete that is inside. Pouring concrete inside the rigid thermal insulation form affixes the rebar into a modular unit. Let’s see how a home using ICF is built better and is more cost-effective than other methods, according to Idaho home builders.
To begin with, ICF suits the Idaho area to a T. The form may be made of polystyrene foam or another type of insulation, but the bottom line is that the thermal resistance (R-value) of an ICF wall can reach R-30. This saves energy required for heating and maintaining a comfortable environment. R-value alone doesn’t tell the whole story however. The thermal mass of the wall evens out temperature fluctuations from day to night and greatly decreases the cycling of heaters and ac units. Also, heat loss from air leaks and insulation gaps are negligible when ICF comes into the picture.
Much Stronger then Wood
The strength of ICF is up to ten times stronger than structures framed in wood, and the forces of nature which drive in cold and wet are stymied due to the continuous solid frame. While conduits run easily through insulating foam, vermin and insects find ICF barriers more difficult to tunnel through. Speaking of safety, ICF have negligible surface burning factors, and their walls have lower rates of acoustic transmission and mold potential. Professional home builders realize that these behind-the-scenes qualities need pointing out to the potential customer in order to inform him or her of the solid worth of ICF, but the details of a client/builder consultation include aspects of realizing a dream, too.
Let’s move along to aesthetics, the easiest part for a customer to understand. ICF provides backing for drywall or custom finishes on the interior. Perhaps an elegant mosaic on one wall may be planned as a room’s focal point for decor, while standard drywall is selected for the remainder. Perhaps a stucco siding on the exterior of ICF fills the bill for customizing a client’s new home. Such personal touches are possible with a sturdy framing structure of ICF, and the client will own a dream house built on a firm foundation. Give us a call if you need an ICF home builder in Idaho.
For more information check out our blog post about Why you should choose Insulated Concrete Forms to build your new home.