ICF and the concrete industry have been growing in leaps and bounds over the last several years. As more home and business owners become aware of the benefits of this unique form of building, more builders and contractors are beginning to meet demand.
Below, you’ll find the top 24 builders and contractors who work with ICF. These companies are doing exceptional, and oftentimes, groundbreaking work, helping to push the concrete industry forward. Check them out to learn more about this exciting industry and the people behind it.
1. A.B.A. Services LLC
A.B.A Services takes on jobs of every size, scope, and scale. They offer concrete construction services, including ICF and the systems it employ such as excavation and the concrete that fill the forms.
2. Active Contractors Inc.
A full service general contracting firm specializing in residential construction, Active Construction lists ICF as one of their offerings. They understand the benefits ICF can bring their clients, and have the knowledge and experience to assist other builders as well.
3. AEC Wall Systems LLC
Alternative Energy Construction of Springfield, MO believes that ICF is the future of residential construction. They work with both blocks and ICF panels to achieve better results for all projects.
4. Chiaramonte Construction Company
The Chiaramonte Construction Company in Washington, DC is a small general contracting firm that focuses on sustainable design. They cover a range of materials and techniques, including those in concrete, such as ICF.
5. Cobra Concrete
Cobra Concrete builds only with ICF blocks, and they do so faster and less expensively than traditional builders working with other materials. They have an impressive project gallery, showing clients just what’s possible with this innovative material.
6. Connor Construction
Connor Construction is a custom home builder located in Morris, IL. In addition to building custom homes and offering exceptional service, they also specialize in and offer ICF construction.
7. Cornerstone Custom Construction, Inc.
Cornerstone Custom Construction Inc. has been building homes using ICF since 1998 – long before others caught on to what an impressive building system this is. Since then, they have crafting beautiful homes and businesses using ICF, and have become one of the premier builders in their area.
8. Force 5 Walls, Inc.
Magnolia Springs, AL
Force 5 Walls has been working with ICF since 1997, and has a stunning portfolio of work to show for it. They take on projects of all kinds, including beautiful custom homes, commercial buildings and schools. They’re quick to point out to their clients the many ways that ICF can benefit their project.
9. Heritage Lane Builders
Since 1987, Heritage Lane Builders have been building and renovating custom homes. They offer a wide range of sites, layouts, and plans to suit anyone’s home building needs.
10. Holiday Builders, Inc.
Holiday Builders has been working with ICF and stamped concrete pavers for more than 25 years. They specialize in concrete construction, but can help meet any building needs.
11. Lonnie Wright Construction Co., Inc.
Lonnie Wright Construction has been building in the Stanley, New Mexico area since 1978. In 1995, they began going green, which included the use of ICF in the homes that they were constructing. Since then, they’ve been one of the premier ICF builders in the area.
12. MACNAK Construction
Macnak construction strives for perfection with everything they build. They specialize in ICF and concrete buildings and homes, believing that these structures are better, more durable, and more energy efficient than stick built, and they strive to give people these benefits at no additional costs.
13. Merlin Custom Home Builders
Las Vegas, NV
Since its inception in 1989, Merlin Contracting has built or remodeled more than 200 custom homes – including some built with ICF. They have Nevada State approval to build homes of any size, scope, or scale, and they do so with breathtaking results.
14. Mid-Atlantic ICF
Crystal River, FL
Mid-Atlantic ICF works solely with ICF constructions, educating on its properties and assisting in builds. They are one of the largest ICF contractors in the area they serve.
15. Modern Group AZ
Modern Group AZ is a specialized group of subcontractors ready to assist builders and contractors with their projects. Included in their wide array of talents is the ability to work with different building systems – including ICF blocks.
16. Murphy Brothers Contracting
Murphy Brothers Contracting puts an emphasis on quality and another on building green. That’s why they list ICF as one of the ways that they can assist their clients in achieving both goals.
17. New Castle Home Builders
New Castle Home Builders is a specialized concrete building firm in Iowa. Their custom home portfolio has continued to grow with ICF homes over the last several years, developing into an impressive display.
18. Perfection Builders
Perfection Builders has been building homes in British Columbia since 2003. They specialize in custom projects, including those built using alternative methods such as ICF.
19. Riversdale ICF Distributors & Builders
Riversdale Builders specialize in the use of ICF, touting their many advantages to clients. They install ICF throughout Northeast Washington and into the Idaho Panhandle.
20. Ryman & Sons
Ryman and Sons are residential and commercial concrete contractors in Manitoba, Canada. They offer a full range of concrete construction services, including ICF.
21. Southern Wall Systems
Rd Elon, NC
Southern Wall Systems makes a compelling case for why ICF should be the preferred building method in the south. They offer a wide range of services, including ICF, and help to educate others as to why they should make the switch.
22. Turning Leaf Construction
Founded in 2009, Turning Leaf Construction has been putting a focus on energy efficient building since day one. That’s why they have a dedicated branch of their company dealing exclusively with ICF. They take on projects of every size – big or small – including custom homes.
23. Van Haren Construction Inc.
Van Haren Construction is another company who saw the benefits of ICF long before the others around them. They are one of the best builders in the Faribault, MN area, using ICF to construct and build custom homes.
24. Vintage Custom Homes
Volusia County, FL
Located in Volusia County, FL, Vintage Custom Homes is the premier ICF builder for the area. They’ve constructed more than 30 homes from ICF blocks since 2015, and founder Tad A. Olmsted firmly believes that they are the best way to build.
Build Better with ICF
As the work and portfolios of these 24 companies shows, ICF is a versatile, durable, and outstanding way to build a home or business. Take a look at any of these premier concrete builders to find out more about what services they may offer you.
Many contractors, architects, and owners of hotels recognize the advantages of insulating concrete form (ICF) construction: disaster-resistant, energy-efficient, healthy, durable, sound deadening, and quick to install. The benefits of ICF hotels, like those constructed with Fox Blocks, also yield short- and long-term financial savings to the hotel owner.
Why Build a Hotel with ICFs?
ICFs are blocks made with expanded polystyrene insulation (EPS) or other insulating foam. The ICFs are stacked to form the shape of the hotel’s walls. Steel rebar strengthens the hollow centers. Concrete fills the hollow centers which create a layer of continuous insulation (CI). CI essentially eliminates thermal bridging through the wall.
Hotels built with ICFs have many benefits to the hotel owners, employees, and guests:
- ICF walls are energy-efficient with whole wall R-values of 20
- ICF buildings are quiet and comfortable
- ICF walls are moisture-resistant, which prevents the growth of mold. Mold is unhealthy and can damage the integrity of the hotel
- ICF walls have a 4-hour fire rating
- ICF walls can stand up to severe wind-events, like a hurricane or tornado
Building a Hotel with Fox Blocks ICFs
Fox Blocks ICF Hotels are Disaster-Resistant
Fox Blocks ICFs create disaster-resistant hotels that protect the building and its occupants against natural disasters like fires, hurricanes, and tornadoes. Disaster-resistance is critical in new hotel construction because of more frequent and severe weather events and increasing wildfires; both are due to global warming.
- Fox Blocks are fireproof. Fox Blocks ICFs have a fire-resistance ASTM E119 rating of 2-hours for the 4-inch blocks and 4-hours for the 6-inch blocks
- Fox Blocks are wind-resistant: Fox Blocks, with steel reinforced concrete, will withstand severe hurricane and tornado winds exceeding 200 MPH and projectile debris flying over 100 MPH.
Fox Blocks ICF Hotels are Energy-Efficient, Healthy, and Durable
Energy-efficiency is vital in hotels because energy represents about six percent of all hotel operating costs. Implementing energy-efficient strategies in hotel design can reduce energy consumption by ten percent.
Fox Blocks ICF construction controls air and moisture infiltration and ensures an energy-efficient hotel. Fox Blocks provide CI which stops air leakage (thermal bridging) and moisture accumulation within the wall assembly. Moisture resistance is vital to preventing the growth of mold. Mold can degrade a building’s integrity and diminishes the indoor environmental quality of the hotel. Fox Blocks ICFs create energy-efficient, healthy, and durable hotels.
- Energy-efficient Fox Blocks have an R-value of 23+ and exceed ASHRAE/ANSI 90.1 energy code requirements
- The high thermal mass of Fox Blocks produces a high-performing, energy-efficient hotel. High thermal mass walls absorb and store heat energy, which stabilizes temperature shifts within a hotel by slowing the heat-cold transfer rate
- Fox Blocks control moisture intrusion because the blocks provide a solid continuous monolithic concrete wall with a perm rating of below 1.0
Fox Blocks ICFs Create Quiet Hotels
Soundproofing the walls of a hotel is critical for the comfort and well being of the occupants. The goal of soundproofing is to limit noise pollution or unwanted sounds.
- The Fox Blocks ICF wall assembly lessens the transfer of sound between interior common walls and from the outside to the inside of the hotel. Fox Blocks have a Sound Transmission Class rating of STC 45-50+.
The Financial Benefits of ICF Hotel Construction
Hotel owners can save money with Fox Blocks ICF construction during and after the building process.
- Installation of Fox Blocks is fast and easy, which saves money and time while shortening the construction schedule. Earlier occupancy means additional revenue and reduced construction loan costs. The Fox Blocks wall assembly combines five building steps into one: the structure, insulation, air barrier, vapor retarder, and attachment. This feature significantly quickens project delivery time by eliminating the need to coordinate multiple trades
- ICF hotels minimize the need for repairs and maintenance because they resist rot and degradation, which saves a hotel owner money
- The durability of an ICF hotel to stand up to strong wind events saves a hotel owner the costs of repairing and rebuilding after a severe tornado or hurricane.
- ICF hotels are energy-efficient, which reduces monthly expenses to the hotel owners
The Wallhouse Hotel, built with Fox Blocks ICFs, is a five-story structure in Ohio that is disaster-resistant, quiet, and extremely energy-efficient. Along with the Fox Blocks thermal wall, the hotel’s innovative HVAC systems allows a 50 percent savings in energy costs compared to conventional hotels of similar size.
The Centre Park Holiday Inn Event and Conference Center, built with Fox Blocks ICFs, is a 116,000 square foot hotel, event and conference center that is disaster-resistant, quiet, and highly energy-efficient. Importantly, Fox Blocks saved the owners money by finishing the project two months in advance; completing the project in just 420 days.
Fox Blocks are an excellent product for constructing an ICF hotel. Fox Blocks create a hotel that is disaster-resistant, energy-efficient, healthy, durable, sound deadening, and quick to install. All these features can save hotel owners money. For more information on ICF hotel construction, please visit Fox Blocks.
Fox Blocks insulated concrete forms (ICFs) create medical buildings that are safe, energy-efficient, durable, healthy, comfortable, and quiet. Fox Blocks ICFs are also quick and simple to install; saving contractors time and money.
Medical facilities (hospitals, assisted care homes, outpatient clinics, and psychiatric facilities) built with insulated concrete forms (ICFs) provide patients and medical staff all the critical elements for a modern medical building. ICF medical buildings are safe, healthy, and quiet. ICF medical buildings are also energy-efficient, durable, resilient, low-maintenance, and quick to install; four qualities that lower short-term and long-term expenses of a medical facility.
Safe and Disaster-Resistant ICF Design for Medical Building Construction
Fire-Resistant ICF Medical Facilities
An ICF wall system for a medical facility contributes towards passive fire protection within the wall systems. Passive fire protection limits the spread of smoke and fire and can lessen the danger to the occupants and the damage to the property. Passive design is also essential to protecting the structural components and preventing the collapse of a medical building during a fire emergency.
Fox Blocks ICFs are an excellent option for passive firewall protection. The 6-inch Fox Blocks ICFs achieve an ASTM E119 fire rating of four hours (double the two-hour requirement), an ASTM E84 value for flame speed lower than 25, and smoke development lower than 450.
Hurricane and Tornado-Resistant ICF Medical Buildings
A medical building constructed with ICF walls protects the building and its occupants from high winds during severe weather events. An ideal choice for a hurricane- or tornado-resistant wall construction is Fox Block ICFs.
- Medical Buildings constructed with Fox Blocks ICFs maintain their integrity during severe tornado winds of over 200 mph.
- Fox Blocks ICFs withstand projectile debris traveling more than 100 mph.
Flood-Resistant ICF Medical Buildings
The design of medical buildings in flood hazard zones must protect against storm surge, tide, and excessive rain. Flood-resistant design includes elevated structures, materials that can get wet, and design assemblies that easily dry when exposed to moisture. ICFs have all the critical elements of a flood-resistant wall. Constructing a medical building with ICF’s ensures a durable and strong structure that can stand up to water intrusion before and after a flood.
A superb choice for building an ICF medical building is the Fox Blocks solid continuous monolithic concrete walls. Fox Blocks walls are moisture-resistant and permeable (perm rating below 1.0). Fox Blocks ensure moisture that infiltrates the wall system, dries out and won’t move on to nearby materials. Fox Blocks reinforced concrete construction also does not degrade when wet and maintains its original shape and integrity during and after a flood.
Earthquake-Resistant ICF Medical Buildings
Earthquake-resistant ICF medical buildings create shear walls that extend the entire height and all sides of the building. ICF shear walls, like those built with Fox Blocks, are anchored to the foundation with steel reinforcing bars. When an earthquake occurs, this design effectively resists intense sideways (lateral) in-plane forces that push the top of the wall in one direction while the bottom remains either stationary or is forced in the other direction (racking the wall).
The Excellent Indoor Environmental Quality (IEQ) of ICF Medical Buildings
ICF medical facilities, like those constructed with Fox Blocks, provide superb IEQ because they are quiet, lack volatile organic compounds (VOCs), and are air- and moisture-resistant.
- Fox Block ICF walls of medical buildings promote patient dignity and privacy by ensuring that patients and the exam rooms are soundproof. Fox Blocks ICFs has a high ASTM E90 Sound Transmission Classification (STC) rating of more than 50 that creates an exterior and interior wall system with high sound reduction.
- Fox Blocks ICFs are healthy because they do not contain VOC. VOC are harmful because they cause eye, nose, and throat irritations, nausea, headaches, and damage to the liver, kidney, and central nervous system.
- Fox Blocks ICF medical facilities are also healthy because they are air- and moisture-resistant, which is essential to preventing moisture accumulation in the wall system. Moisture in the wall system leads to unhealthy mold.
Energy-Efficient ICF Medical Building Design
ICF construction contributes towards a tight-building envelope and an energy-efficient medical building. Vital components of an energy-efficient medical building are continuous insulation (CI), an effective air- and moisture barrier, and high thermal mass building materials. CI and an air- and moisture barrier prevents thermal bridging, raises the effective R-value and stops condensation. High thermal mass building materials absorb and store heat energy and stabilize temperature shifts within the medical building by slowing down heat transfer. Fox Blocks provide all these elements and are an ideal wall system for building an energy-efficient medical building.
- The high thermal mass of Fox Blocks ICFs has an R-value of 23 that surpasses the ASHRAE/ANSI 90.1 energy code requirements.
- Fox Blocks are a solid continuous monolithic concrete wall (perm rating less than 1.0) with two layers of continuous interior and exterior expanded polystyrene (EPS) insulation. The concrete and EPS provide air and vapor barriers on both sides of the wall, which prevents moisture accumulation within the wall system.
Medical Buildings Constructed with ICF are Durable
Fox Blocks ICF medical building’s wall systems are durable because they are moisture- and termite-resistant.
- Fox Blocks are Moisture-Resistant: Fox Blocks’ solid continuous monolithic concrete wall controls moisture intrusion and prevents the growth of mold, which can degrade a medical building’s integrity.
- Fox Blocks Provide Termite Resistant: Because Fox Blocks lack organic material, they are less susceptible to termites. But, for waterproofing and complete termite protection, Fox Blocks recommends Polyguard Products, Inc. 650 XTM or 650 XTP membranes.
Fox Blocks ICFs are Quick to Install
Fox Blocks ICF wall systems save money during medical building construction because Fox Blocks is an all in one wall system reduces the construction schedule, which makes installation easy and fast. Fox Block wall assembly combines five steps into one, including structure, insulation, vapor retarder, air barrier, and full height furring attachment.
Fox Blocks ICF medical buildings provide patients and medical staff a safe, healthy, and quiet environment. Fox Blocks ICF medical buildings also lower short-term and long-term expenses because they are energy-efficient, durable, low-maintenance, and quick to install.
Important considerations when choosing the best ICF block product include excellent manufacturer and dealer support, regional manufacturing and local inventory, code compliance, easy installation, and energy-efficiency. Fox Block ICF excels in all these areas, which makes it an excellent choice for the best ICF block system.
What are Insulated Concrete Form (ICF)
Expanded polystyrene insulation (EPS) make-up insulated concrete forms (ICFs). ICFs are stacked to form the shape of the walls. Steel rebar or steel fibers strengthen the reinforced concrete filled hollow centers, which creates a layer of continuous insulation (CI). CI significantly lessens thermal bridging through the wall. The most common type of ICFs are hollow blocks; however, there are also panel and plank ICF systems.
- Block systems are hollow-core blocks that stack and interlock like Legos. Blocks typically are 12-inch to 16-inch tall and 4-feet long.
- Panel system units are 1-foot to 4-foot tall and 4-foot to 8-foot long, with a flat rectangular shape, like a wall. They are connected with brackets or ties.
- Plank systems are 8-inch to 12-inch tall and 4-feet to 8-feet long. The planks are connected with brackets or ties.
Five Tips for Choosing the Best ICF Block Systems
1. The Best ICF Block Systems Provide Excellent Manufacturer Support
When selecting the best ICF building system for a project, it is vital to choose a manufacturer and dealer that offers superior support. There are several crucial areas of support an ICF manufacturer should provide.
- Superior support includes knowledgeable regional managers that ensure installers have been thru a company training program that includes estimating.
- Availability of ICF professionals to visit the job sites for training and problem-solving.
- Technical representatives available by phone to answer questions during construction is a must have for manufacturer support.
2. The Best ICF System is Readily Available to the Location of the Project
Once the best ICF building system is determined, make sure it is readily available in the region of the project. Many suppliers only ship from a limited distance. Some will transport their products nationwide but at a higher cost. A price quote must always include shipping costs.
3. The Best ICF Block is Code Approved
Approval by the model building code of the project’s location is essential for the ICF block system. The ICF system must also be in accordance with 2018 IECC codes other US and Canadian local building code requirements.
4. The Best ICF Block System is Easy to Assemble
The ICF block system is easier to assemble than panel and plank ICF systems; which makes the ICF block system a better ICF choice. Block systems are fully pre-assembled when they arrive at the job site, so the job crew simple fits the units together. Plank and panel systems, however, require more job site assembly. As a rule, pre-assembled units are a better selection, especially if labor is expensive and construction time is limited.
Also, the best ICF blocks for quick and easy assembly include special preformed units for particular situations or parts of the wall, like preformed corners, 45-degree angles, radius, brickledge and T intersection forms. While these special units may cost more, they save on time and labor costs.
5. The Best Energy-Efficient ICF Blocks have High R-Values
The resistance-value (R-value) of an ICF product is a measure of how effectively it stops heat transfer. The R-value of an ICF wall depends mostly on the foam thickness and material. The best ICF product efficiently resists the flow of heat, which keep a home warm in the winter and cool in the summer. Reducing the flow of heat in a home or building lessens energy use and saves money.
Why Fox Blocks are the Best ICF Blocks
Fox Blocks Provide Excellent Support
Every year, the Insulating Concrete Forms Magazine publishes a chart comparing ICF products. The 2019 comparison came out in January and compared 21 ICF manufacturers. Fox Blocks stood out in several areas, including support. Fox Blocks received a positive response in all areas of support: installation help, training, engineering support, BIM library, and CAD details.
Fox Blocks are Available throughout North America
Fox Blocks has many knowledgeable regional managers, a network of local dealers and trained installers throughout North America.
Fox Blocks are Code Approved
Fox Blocks ICFs meet and exceed local US and Canadian codes and the 2018 IECC energy code requirements, and create sustainable buildings and homes with superb moisture resistance and energy performance.
Fox Blocks are Easy to Install
Fox Block Series is an all in one wall assembly, which makes it quick and easy to install. Fox Block Wall systems combine five construction steps into one, including structure, continuous interior and exterior insulation, air barrier, vapor retarder, and full height furring attachment. This feature shortens construction time by reducing the need to coordinate various trades.
Fox Blocks are Energy-Efficient
Fox Blocks provide continuous insulation with an R-value of 23+, which create an airtight building envelope. Fox Blocks also provides a solid continuous monolithic concrete wall with a perm rating below 1.0, which controls moisture infiltration and prohibits the growth of mold. Mold is unhealthy, and it can degrade the integrity of the structure.
Choose the Best ICF Blocks
Factors essential to choosing the best ICF block product include superior manufacturer support, availability, code compliance, easy installation, and energy-efficiency. Fox Block ICFs excel at all these factors, which makes it the best choice for an ICF block system.
The need for new low cost house construction in the United States (U.S.) has reached a critical level due to a shortage of affordable housing. Low-cost housing must provide reasonable rents and manageable monthly expenses. A building solution to low-cost housing with affordable utility bills are insulated concrete forms (ICFs), like Fox Blocks. Fox Blocks ICFs create energy-efficient, low-maintenance and durable housing, which fosters fair rents and low utility bills.
Affordable, Low-Cost Housing Shortage in the U.S.
A shortage of available low-cost housing in the U.S. is driving up rents. The National Low-Income Housing Coalition (NLIHC) reports that in the U.S. there are 35 available and affordable rental homes for every 100 low-income renter households (people with income at or below 80 percent of regions median income). The impacts of increasing low-income rents are often devastating. It slows the ability of families to accumulate funds for a mortgage down payment, makes some choose between food and medicine, and can even lead to evictions and homelessness for others.
The Need for Energy-Efficient Low Cost House Construction
Low-income households often struggle with utility costs. A recent report found that low-income households spend 7.2 percent of their household income on utilities. Low-income households pay more than twice the percentage of their household income on utilities as median-income households and three times as much as higher-income households. The report concluded that if low-income housing had the same efficiency level as the average U.S. home, it would decrease energy costs for low-income housing by 35 percent.
The challenge to contractors and architects of low-cost housing is to construct living spaces with affordable rents and utilities. Providing low rent and energy-efficient housing is vital to closing the gap between low-income and median-income households.
Energy-Efficient and Durable Low-Cost Housing Requires a Tight Building Envelope
Builders and architects of low-cost housing must consider energy-efficiency and durability. Energy-efficient housing lowers the tenant’s monthly bills. Durability will lessen long-term repair and maintenance expenses; costs that are often passed on to the tenants. Critical elements of energy-efficient, durable, and low-cost housing is a tight building envelope, and the location of the site, windows, rooms, and ductwork.
A tight building envelope is vital to controlling utility costs and creating good indoor environmental quality (IEQ) for low-cost housing. A tight building envelope needs both continuous insulation (CI) and an air and moisture barrier. In combination, the CI and an air and moisture barrier control heat gains and losses and moisture infiltration. Managing heat gains and losses will lessen energy use and save money. Moisture resistance is vital to preventing mold, which can diminish the IEQ and integrity of a home.
ICF Wall Construction for Low-Cost Housing
The walls for low-cost housing are essential to producing a tight building envelope. Vital components of energy-efficient walls include low-thermal-conductivity, high effective R-value, and high thermal mass . Energy-efficient walls for low-cost housing are critical to achieving a tight building envelope.
An effective wall system for building energy-efficient and durable low-cost housing is insulated concrete form (ICF) walls. ICF walls form a tight building envelope that protects against air and moisture inflation.
ICFs are cast-in-place concrete walls, placed between two layers of insulation. To make ICF walls, expanded polystyrene foam panels or interlocking hollow extruded polystyrene foam are dry-stacked to a wall’s length. The forms are braced and reinforced. Trained professionals then place concrete into the hollow form panels.
Other than energy-efficiency and durability, there are several more benefits of ICF wall systems for low-cost housing:
- ICFs are disaster-, fire-, and pest-resistant
- ICFs are low-maintenance
- ICFs are noise-reducing and healthy
- ICF construction provides design flexibility
- ICFs are easy and quick to install, which saves time and money
Building Low-Cost Housing with Fox Blocks ICF
A superior product for building new low-cost housing is the Fox Blocks ICF. Fox Blocks provide CI with an R-value of 23+, which produces an airtight building envelope that is essential for an energy-efficient home. Fox Blocks also create a solid continuous monolithic concrete wall with a perm rating of less than 1.0. The low perm rating manages moisture intrusion and stops the growth of mold, which is both unhealthy and diminishes the integrity of the house.
Importantly, Fox Blocks reduces construction costs because it combines five construction steps into one, including structure, insulation, air barrier, vapor retarder, and furring attachment. This feature quickens the project delivery time by eliminating the need to coordinate various trades. Fox Blocks ICFs can help fill the gap in affordable housing by creating new energy-efficient, durable, and low-cost housing.
A Fox Blocks house built from an ICF home plan looks just like a house built from a wood-frame home plan. However, a Fox Blocks home has many advantages over a wood-frame house. Fox Blocks ICF homes are energy-efficient, storm wind-, tornado-, hurricane- and fire-resistant, healthy, durable, and low maintenance.
ICF Home Plans
Insulated concrete form (ICF) home plans are similar to wood-frame home plans; however, ICF home plans include wider walls while maintaining the same interior square footage. When building an ICF home, homeowners can choose either a wood-frame or an ICF home plan to construct their ICF home. However, selecting a wood-frame home plan will require a design professional, at a minimal cost, to convert the wood-frame home plan to an ICF home plan.
The Design Flexibility of ICF Home Construction
There are countless design options for ICF home construction. The strength and flexibility of ICF home construction can accommodate most any home size and style. ICF is easy to cut and shape and can include customized designs, such as large openings, curved walls, long ceiling spans, cathedral ceilings, and custom angles.
The Width of ICF Walls
An ICF home looks just like a wood-framed home. However, there is one major difference between ICF and wood-frame construction – the ICF walls are wider (12+ inches) than wood-framed walls (4.5 inches).
Because ICF walls are wider, building an ICF home from a wood-frame home plan moves the exterior footprint out. If building in on a zero lot line, dimensions should be verified.
To maintain the original square footage of a wood-frame house plan, the design professional will increase the overall dimensions of the house, which can impact the design of the roof and foundation. Also, doors and windows will use wider jamb extensions to accommodate the increased wall thickness.
Custom ICF Homes by Fox Blocks
Other than the width of the ICF walls, there are no limitations on designs for an ICF house plan. For example, Fox Blocks ICFs have provided the wall systems for a variety of home plans from a custom-modern-mountain home in Canada to a traditionally styled home along the gulf coast of Alabama.
Situated along a large rock on the side of a mountain in West Vancouver, British Columbia is a 5,200 square foot custom home built with Fox Blocks ICF. The beautiful, craftsman style home has nine levels with a six-point intersect roof line.
Located along the Fish River near the Alabama Gulf Coast is a 2,600 square foot home built with Fox Blocks ICF. It is a simple, yet elegant home that was built to stand up to the dangerous and increasing wind events along the southern coast.
The Benefits of ICF Home Construction
ICF construction creates homes that are energy-efficient, storm-disaster-resistant, and healthy. Other notable benefits of ICF construction are low maintenance and superb durability.
ICF Wall Systems are Energy-Efficient
– ICF wall systems have no studs or gaps in the insulation between the walls, which minimizes heating and cooling losses.
– ICF wall systems provide continuous insulation with no thermal bridges, which saves homeowners energy and money.
– Fox Blocks, with an R-value of 23+, provide continuous insulation and exceed ASHRAE/ANSI 90.1 energy code requirements.
– The thermal mass of ICF walls absorb and store energy. Because of the mass the walls keep the interior warmer or cooler for a longer period of time versus wood frame walls. Providing a more stable comfortable interior environment.
– Fox Blocks provide an ideal high thermal mass wall assembly.
ICF Wall Systems are Disaster-Resistant
– ICF wall construction produces a strong continuous load path that ensures the home will retain its integrity against winds of over 200 mph. A report by the Portland Cement Association (PCA), found that ICF walls have more structural capacity and stiffness to withstand the in-plane shear forces of dangerous winds than steel- or wood-framed walls. Also, ICF wall construction provides exceptional protection against wind-driven debris.
– Fox Blocks maintain their integrity during winds of over 200 mph and can withstand projectile debris traveling more than 100 mph.
– ICF walls are fire-resistant and protect a home and its occupants from fires.
– Fox Blocks are fire-resistant. Fox Blocks’ fire-resistance rating (ASTM E119) is 4-hours for the 6-inch blocks.
ICF Wall Systems are Healthy
– ICF walls are moisture-resistant, which prevents condensation in the wall system. Condensation in the wall can lead to unhealthy mold.
– Fox Blocks is moisture-resistant. It is a solid continuous monolithic concrete wall with a perm rating of less than 1.0.
– ICF walls do not contain volatile organic compound (VOC). VOCs are dangerous and unhealthy to the occupants of a home.
ICF Wall Systems are Durable and Low Maintenance
– ICF wall systems are durable because they are resistant to termites and moisture; both degrade the integrity of a home. ICF construction saves homeowners money and time by lessening maintenance and repairs due to wood rot and termite damage.
– Fox Blocks are moisture resistant which limits the growth of mold, mildew, and rot.
– Fox Blocks are less prone to termite damage because they lack organic material, which termites need to eat. For waterproofing and termite protection, Fox Blocks recommends Polyguard Products, Inc. 650 XTM or 650 XTP membranes.
An ICF home plan produces a house that looks just like one built from a wood-frame home plan. However, an ICF home, like one built with Fox Blocks has many benefits over a traditionally framed home. Fox Blocks ICF homes are energy-efficient, wind- and fire-resistant, and healthy homes. Other notable advantages of ICF construction are low maintenance and outstanding durability.
Fox Blocks insulated concrete form (ICF) construction reduces labor costs because Fox Blocks ICF is an all in one wall system that integrates five steps into one quick and easy installation. Therefore, builders can construct an ICF Mixed use, Multi-family commercial building faster and with less labor than either wood-frame or concrete masonry (CMU) construction. ICF walls also create moisture-resistant, disaster-resistant, durable, energy-efficient and quiet building-homes.
Construction Worker Shortage are Driving Labor Costs Up and Slowing Housing Starts
Since the housing bust of 2008, home construction recovery in the United States (U.S.) has been slow with fewer homes starts the past ten years than the historical norm. Blamed for the sluggish recovery are several factors: scarcity of home sites in high-demand areas, the rising cost of building materials, and a lack of construction labor.
The construction labor shortage is escalating labor costs and slowing the building market. In fact, in October 2018, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that there were 292,000 construction job openings, the most since the housing boom. Furthermore the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) analysis of government data reported in August 2018 there were 298,000 unfilled construction sector jobs. Of concern, a recent NAHB survey found that 90 percent of single-family builders struggle to find rough carpenters.
The reasons the construction industry is finding it difficult to rebuild the construction labor force since the recession are attributed mainly to the industry not attracting millennials and also the immigration policies under the current administration. The latter is most significant since 25 percent of construction workers are immigrants; even higher in some regions of the U.S. like California (42 percent) and Texas (41 percent).
Concernedly, labor shortages are profoundly affecting regions in the U.S. recently impacted by devastating natural disasters and now requiring massive rebuilding efforts, like Texas and the Carolinas. The worker shortages in these areas are intensely lowering production volume and increasing the cost of labor to rebuild.
ICF Construction Reduces Labor Costs
ICF construction is gaining momentum because ICF offers reduced labor costs, improved comfort, and greater energy efficiency and safety ratings over traditional building methods. Notably, the global ICF market is predicted to attain a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 27.5% between 2017 and 2022.
Currently, North America dominates the market for insulated concrete forms, followed by Europe. However, regions of South America and the Asia-Pacific are also expected to increase their ICF market share in the future.
How Fox Blocks ICF Construction Reduces Labor Costs
Fox Blocks ICF construction is an excellent solution to rising labor costs because Fox Blocks ICF requires less labor and takes less time to build than either CMU and wood-frame construction.
Fox Blocks ICF wall system is easy and fast to install because it is an all in one wall system that integrates five steps into one, including structure/concrete form, air barrier, insulation, vapor retarder, and furring for finish attachment. The all in one feature quicken project delivery by removing the need to coordinates multiple trades, while achieving all of the wall system’s goals.
Fox Blocks ICFs takes half the time and requires less labor to construct than concrete masonry unit walls.
– A CMU wall requires an application of insulation. Applying insulation over the CMU wall adds another trade to the job site. The additional trade adds one more day of expensive labor to the project.
– A CMU wall often requires the installation of an air and moisture barrier; further adding another trade and more labor to the project.
– ICFs are lightweight which speeds construction time over CMU.
Fox Blocks ICF walls take less time and require less labor to construct than wood-frame walls. ICF reduces labor costs, over wood frame labor costs, by eliminating the need for:
– the framing laborers for exterior walls
– the insulation installation labor on the interior of the envelope
– the labor for removal of concrete forms after pouring the foundation
– the framing labor for finishing the interior of the foundation wall
– the labor for insulation installation for the foundation wall
– the labor for applying the poly vapor barrier
The lack of the younger workers entering the construction trades and recent immigration policies are contributing to the current construction labor shortage. The shortage is escalating labor costs and slowing the pace of construction, which is affecting the builder’s profits and driving up the cost of new home construction.
A solution to reducing labor costs and combating the ever-increasing labor shortages in the construction trades is the Fox Blocks ICF. Fox Blocks ICFs integrate five steps into one quick and easy installation; therefore, Fox Blocks ICFs multi-family buildings or homes are built faster and with less labor than either wood-frame or CMU construction.
Fox Blocks insulated concrete forms (ICFs) and Superior Walls both create disaster-resistance and non-toxic wall systems. They also can claim quick and easy installation of their products. However, Fox Blocks have several advantages over Superior Walls. Fox Blocks are more energy-efficient, and moisture- and fire- resistant than Superior Walls.
Superior Walls – Insulated Precast Concrete Panels
Superior Walls are insulated precast concrete panels used for a basement foundation, crawl space foundation, above-grade walls, and multi-level concrete walls.
What are Superior Walls?
Manufacturing of Superior Walls occurs in a factory. The walls are pre-insulated with 1-inch DOW Styrofoam, with an R-5 rating. The casting of the steel reinforced horizontal layer of the concrete beam and 2-inch-thick concrete facing is in one continuous pour at the factory.
Increasing the Superior Wall’s R-value, up to R-26, is done by adding insulation to the 7-1/2-inch-deep wall cavity between the studs. A triple bead of Bostik Chem-Caulk provides a watertight sealant at the panel seams. A 4-inch perforated drain pipe is set 12-inches from the precast wall to channel water away from the foundation. Panels are typically 16 feet long with standard heights of 4-foot, 4-foot 8 inches, 8-foot 2-inches, 9-foot, and 10-foot.
Problems with Insulated Precast Concrete Panels
It is vital that builders are aware of several problems associated with insulated precast concrete panels, like Superior Walls. Insulated precast concrete panels lack moisture and fire-resistance and may require regular maintenance.
Moisture Problems with Insulated Precast Concrete Panels
Moisture may enter a precast concrete wall system through improper detailing or cracks in the panel that can occur during the cooling and drying after the curing process. Both cases can cause widespread water problems due to condensation forming within the wall construction.
What is Condensation?
Condensation occurs when warm air, from either the inside or outside of the building, travels towards the cooler interior wall system. Condensation in the wall assembly also occurs when water vapor flows from an area of higher concentration towards an area of lower concentration. Finally, condensation may occur on the wall elements (windows, curtain wall, or metal framing components) if they are not adequating separated or insulated from the precast panels.
Moisture can cause substantial damage to finish materials and can corrode and deteriorate the metal components, such as structural connections and metal wall framing. In addition, moisture may result in mold and mildew, which is unhealthy to the occupants of a building and can cause wood rot.
Thermal Performance Problems with Precast Concrete Panels
Precast wall panels derive their thermal performance characteristics mainly from the amount of insulation placed in the cavity or within the backup wall. The Superior Walls have R values of 5 and 12.5. However, additional insulation may be placed in the extra cavity space so that the walls can achieve R values of over 50.
Routine Maintenance Required for Precast Concrete Panels
If a sealer or concrete coating is used on the precast concrete panels for aesthetics or to reduce moisture penetration into the panel, the sealer or coating will require reapplication. The time frame for reapplication of the sealant and surface protection systems varies but typically is needed every 7 to 20 years.
ICF vs Superior Walls
Fox Blocks provide a solution to the problems associated with Superior Walls. Fox Blocks are more energy-efficient and moisture-, and fire-resistant than Superior Walls. Also, Fox Blocks are disaster-resistant, noise reducing, and healthy. Notably, Fox Blocks are easy to install, which saves time and money.
Fox Blocks are More Energy-Efficient than Superior Walls
Fox Blocks are more energy-efficient that Superior Walls. Fox Blocks are a high thermal mass product that provides continuous insulation and an R-value of 23+. Superior Walls has R values of only 5 and 12.5 without additional insulation.
Fox Blocks are More Moisture-Resistant than Superior Walls
Fox Blocks also produce a solid continuous monolithic concrete jointless wall with a perm rating of less than 1.0, which controls moisture infiltration. Moreover, Fox Blocks two layers of continuous interior and exterior EPS insulation give added protection against water intrusion. Together, the EPS and concrete create air and vapor barriers on both sides of the Fox Wall, which more efficiently stops condensation and moisture accumulation than Superior Walls.
Fox Blocks are More Fire-Resistant than Superior Walls
A premium product for a fire-resistant construction is Fox Blocks ICF. Fox Blocks’ fire-resistance rating is (ASTM E119) 2 hours for the 4-inch blocks and 4 hours for the 6-inch blocks. Also, Fox Blocks have ASTM E84 value for smoke development of less than 450 and flame speed of less than 25.
For more information on ICF vs. superior walls, please visit Fox Blocks.
Fox Blocks ICF Cabins and Cottages are Safe, Comfortable, and Energy-Efficient.
Fox Blocks insulated concrete forms (ICFs) create cozy cabins and cottages that are energy-efficient, wind and fire-resistant, durable, healthy and quiet. Other notable benefits of an ICF cabin are low maintenance and low utility costs. These benefits are vital to cabin and cottage owners who want a low-stress escape from their hectic lives; not a place that creates more work and financial concerns.
In addition, ICF construction ensures year-round use of the cabin. Cabins and cottages often start as a second home or weekend retreat. However, a report by the National Association of Realtors found that four out of 10 second-home owners intend to convert their second home into a year-round primary residence in retirement. Therefore, designing a cabin or a cottage for year-round use is a wise choice. For an energy-efficient, moisture-, and disaster-resistant cabin or cottage, Fox Blocks ICF is an excellent material choice.
ICF Cabins and Cottages are Energy-Efficient, and Moisture- and Disaster-Resistant
ICF Cabins are Energy-Efficient
An energy-efficient ICF cabin minimizes air intrusion which lowers energy use and saves the cabin owner money. An essential design element of an energy-efficient, year-round cabin is a tight building envelope. Critical to a tight building envelope is continuous insulation, with a product such as Fox Blocks wall system. The tight building envelope must also include energy-efficient windows, skylights, and doors suitable to the cabin’s climate zone and roof system. ICFs wall assemblies and energy-efficient glazings and roof systems create a year-round cabin with a tight building envelope that reduces energy use and provides year round financial savings.
ICF Cabins are Moisture-Resistant
A moisture-resistant cabin that limits, if not prevents, moisture accumulation in the wall system, is vital to stopping the growth of mold, which degrades the indoor environmental quality (IEQ) of a cabin. Mold diminishes the IEQ of a cabin because people that inhale or touch mold may experience allergic and asthmatic reactions. Moisture-resistant design is vital to building a healthy cabin.
ICF Cabins are Wind-Resistant
ICF cabin wall construction creates a strong continuous path that ensures the cabin will retain its integrity against winds over 200 mph. A report by the Portland Cement Association (PCA), compared the structural load resistance of ICF walls to conventionally framed walls. The study found that ICF walls have more structural capacity and stiffness to withstand the in-plane shear forces of severe winds than steel- or wood-framed walls. A cabin built with ICF has the strength and integrity to resist winds over 200 mph. Also, ICF wall construction is a cabin’s best protection against wind-driven debris.
ICF Cabins are Fire-Resistant
ICF fire-resistant design protects a cabin and its occupants from fires. The need of fire-resistant construction has escalated in recent years, due in part to an increase in massive wildfires.
Fox Blocks ICF Cabins are Energy-Efficient and Moisture- and Disaster-Resistant
– Fox Blocks, with an R-value of 23+, provide continuous insulation and exceed ASHRAE/ANSI 90.1 energy code requirements. Cabins constructed with ICF exterior walls typically use 32 percent less energy to cool and 44 percent less energy to warm than comparable wood-framed cabins.
– Fox Blocks’ high thermal mass contributes to an energy-efficient and cozy cabin. High thermal mass materials absorb and store heat energy and stabilize temperature changes within the cabin by slowing the rate of heat transfer.
– Fox Blocks is a solid continuous monolithic concrete wall with a perm rating of less than 1.0, which controls moisture accumulation and prevents the growth of mold, mildew, and rot in a cabins wall system.
– Fox Blocks are disaster-resistant: Fox Blocks (with steel reinforced concrete) can endure tornado and hurricane winds exceeding 200 MPH and projectile debris traveling over 100 MPH.
– Fox Blocks are fire-resistant. Fox Blocks’ fire-resistance rating (ASTM E119) is 4-hours for the 6-inch blocks and 2-hours for the 4-inch blocks.
Foundation Requirements of An ICF Cabin
An ICF cabin must have a strong and durable foundation that will transfer the weight and load of the cabin safely to the ground during earthquakes and high winds. The best foundation system for the cabin considers the type and bearing capacity of the soil at the building site, settling, frost, and water.
A foundation must provide strength and stability and protect the cabin from subsidence and settlement. Subsidence is when soil moves away from the cabin. The settlement is when the weight of the cabin forces soil to move away, causing the cabin to sink into the ground. An additional critical element to below grade ICF foundations is a waterproofing membrane and a reliable drainage system. For long-term durability, an ICF cabin must have a strong foundation.
Fox Blocks insulated concrete forms create comfortable, year-round cabins that are energy-efficient, healthy, durable, and disaster-resistant. These elements are vital to providing cabin owners with a retreat for leisure and rest, that is low-maintenance and doesn’t drain their pocketbooks but puts money back into it. Fox Blocks are an ideal material choice for a year-round cabin that is energy-efficient and moisture-, and disaster-resistant.
Fox Blocks create energy-efficient walls with continuous insulation and vapor control.
An energy-efficient wall system, like Fox Blocks, contributes towards a tight energy-envelope and continuous interior and exterior insulation for the whole building. Other parts of the envelope include the foundation, roof, and openings (windows, doors, skylights, ventilators). All parts of a high-performing building envelope must serve as barriers that control the intrusion of rain, vapor, air and the transfer of thermal radiation (heat). A high-quality energy-efficient wall minimizes air inflation and blocks the flow of heat. An energy-efficient wall also controls water and vapor intrusion and protect against thermal radiation.
Continuous Insulation Controls Heat and Air Transfer Through a Wall
Use of continuous insulation across all structural members of a building’s envelope is essential to minimizing air inflation and preventing the flow of heat by conduction, convection, and radiation. Continuous insulation also prevents thermal bridging, which is a common issue with conventional construction like wood and metal framing. Importantly, the ASHRAE 90.1 and the 2018 IECC require continuous insulation in both commercial and residential structures.
The ASHRAE Standard 90.1-2013 defines continuous insulation as insulation that is uncompressed and continuous across all structural members without thermal bridges other than fasteners and service openings. These standards define the amount of insulation required, based on the building’s climate zone, to minimize air infiltration, stop thermal bridging and increase the effective R-value in a wall system. The most useful method of minimizing air infiltration is by installing continuous insulation, along with an air and moisture barrier, in accordance with ASHRAE 90.1 and 2018 IECC codes and standards to any part of the building envelope that does not admit light.
Water and Vapor Control of an Energy-Efficient Wall System
Construction of an energy-efficient wall must control intrusion of rain, groundwater, and vapor. The design of an energy-efficient wall also stops thermal convection and air- and moisture-infiltration through a variety of methods.
1. Install Overhangs to Limit Water Intrusion
The first line of protection against moisture intrusion are overhangs, which keep the water away from the walls. The cladding also limits water intrusion to the interior of the wall system. However, some cladding systems can absorb significant amounts of moisture; therefore, the design of wall assemblies must also manage the inward flow of moisture from groundwater and rain.
2. A Tightly-Sealed Building Envelope Limits Thermal Convection
Thermal convection occurs when heat moves by the flow of liquid or air molecules from the hotter to the cooler side of a wall. Uncontrolled thermal convection causes drafty homes and buildings and is often the greatest source of energy loss in a structure. In wood-frame construction, convection happens through the framing connections, floor, wall, roof, and fenestration intersections. A tightly sealed building envelope with a high-quality air and moisture barriers can prevent thermal convection and create a comfortable, draft-free, environment for the occupants.
3. Control Air and Moisture Infiltration with a WRB
A vapor-permeable, weather-resistant barrier (WRB) is an essential element of an energy-efficient wall assembly for air and moisture control in humid and warm climates. A WRB shields a structure from air and water infiltration. A WRB also lets water escape from the wall assembly, which protects a structure from deterioration and damage. High-quality WRBs are both moisture- and air-resistant and permeable to vapor. A WRB ensures a structure is energy-efficient, healthy and comfortable.
Low Emissivity and High Reflectivity of an Energy-Efficient Wall
Thermal radiation moves heat from warm areas to cooler spaces by electromagnetic waves, which for buildings is primarily the sun’s rays. Thermal radiation will occur between two surfaces in view of each other; they do not require a substance, like air and water, to move through space. All materials reflect, absorb, and emit radiant energy. A material’s ability to radiate absorbed energy, or emit energy as thermal radiation, is called emissivity. A high emissivity material has low reflectivity and will quickly absorb energy that strikes it.
The cladding of an energy-efficient wall should include materials with low emissivity and high reflectivity so to limit the absorption of radiant heat. Two examples of energy-efficient cladding systems in the market are exterior insulation and finish systems (EIFS) and insulated metal wall panels.
How Fox Blocks Create Energy-Efficient Walls
Fox Blocks are two foam panels filled with concrete and reinforced with steel rebar that build energy-efficient walls with continuous insulation and vapor control.
– Fox Blocks insulated concrete forms exceed ASHRAE/ANSI 90.1 energy code requirements, and create sustainable buildings with superb moisture resistance and energy performance.
– Fox Blocks provides a solid continuous monolithic concrete wall with a perm rating of less than 1.0, which controls moisture intrusion and prohibits the growth of mold, mildew, and rot.
– Fox Blocks also provide continuous insulation with an R-value of 23, which create an airtight building envelope with better performance than wood- or steel-frame construction.
Fox Block Series is also fast and easy to install because it is a one wall assembly. Please contact Fox Blocks for more information on building energy-efficient walls.
Florida homes built with Fox Blocks insulated concrete forms (ICF) protect against severe wind events and are energy-efficient and durable. In Florida, these features are essential due to the hot and humid climate, the frequent hurricanes, and the threat of damage from termites.
Key Elements of Florida Home Design and Construction
Home design and construction in Florida must protect against the tropical and subtropical conditions throughout the entire State. The hot, humid, and rainy conditions make energy-efficiency and moisture control vital components of Florida home design.
Also, the constant threats of tropical storms make wind-resistance a critical element of Florida home design. Energy-efficiency, moisture-, storm- are all essential design elements of a comfortable, cost-saving, healthy, and durable Florida home.
Energy-Efficient New Home Construction in Florida
Building an ICF home in humid, hot, and wet Florida ensures a tight building envelope that is energy-efficient and controls the moisture infiltration and accumulation within the wall system. Moisture-resistance and energy-efficiency are vital components of a Florida home where the average annual relative humidity in the morning is 86.4 percent and an average high temperature in July is above 90°F.
Furthermore, Florida’s wet climate results in an average annual precipitation of between 39.8 and 70.4 inches, which often leads to dangerous flooding. The design of a Florida house should include energy-efficient and durable features. An energy-efficient and durable home is also healthy, and comfortable and will lessen a homeowner’s maintenance, repair, and energy costs.
Disaster-Resistant New Home Construction in Florida
Between 1995 and 2017, Florida experienced 42 hurricanes, tropical storms, and tropical depressions. Florida has more hurricanes, tropical storms and tropical depressions than any other State in the United States (U.S.). Of concern, because of climate change and coastal development, nationwide damage from hurricanes is expected to increase significantly in the coming decades. Of concern, the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) predicts an estimated increase in federal aid for hurricane damage from $28 billion in 2017 to $39 billion by 2075. Notably, the CBO predicts that Florida is the State with the most increase in hurricane damage.
New Home Construction in Florida
Building a home in Florida with insulated concrete forms (ICFs) produces a house that is energy-efficient, and moisture-, wind-. A superb ICF product for home construction in Florida is Fox Blocks ICF. The Fox Blocks ICF wall system is energy-efficient, and moisture-, wind-resistant.
ICF – An Ideal Product for a Florida Home
– Energy-efficient Fox Blocks have an R-value of 23 and exceed ASHRAE/ANSI 90.1 energy code requirements. Homes constructed with ICF exterior walls use 32 percent less energy to cool and 44 percent less energy to heat than wood-framed houses.
– The high thermal mass of Fox Blocks generates a high-performing, energy-efficient structure. High thermal mass building products absorb and store heat energy, which stabilizes temperature shifts within the house by slowing the rate of heat transfer.
– Fox Blocks create a solid continuous monolithic concrete wall with a perm rating of less than 1.0. The low perm rating controls moisture intrusion and prevents the growth of mold, which is unhealthy and can degrade the home’s integrity.
– Fox Blocks are wind-resistant: Fox Blocks, with steel reinforced concrete, are disaster-resistant and can resist strong winds exceeding 200 MPH, and projectile debris flying at over 100 MPH.
– Fox Blocks are less prone to termites because they lack the organic material termites eat. However, for waterproofing and termite protection, Fox Blocks recommends Polyguard Products, Inc. 650 XTM or 650 XTP membranes.
Additional Features of Fox Blocks ICF
Fox Blocks are Easy to Install
– Fox Blocks combines five building steps into one, including structure, insulation, air barrier, vapor retarder, and attachment. The all in one wall assembly of Fox Blocks greatly accelerates project delivery time by eliminating the need to coordinate multiple trades.
Fox Blocks are Soundproof
– Sound transmission tests proved that less than a third of sound passes through ICF walls compared to wood- frame walls filled with fiberglass insulation. Fox Blocks achieve a Sound Transmission Classification (ASTM E90) of 4-inch=STC 46, 6- and 8-inch =STC 50+.
Fox Blocks are Non-Toxic
– Fox Blocks contain little to no VOC.
Choose ICF for Your Florida Home
Fox Blocks ICFs create Florida homes that are energy-efficient, and moisture-, wind-, and pest-resistant. In Florida, these features are essential to protecting a home against the hot and humid climate, termites, and the ever-increasing hurricanes, tornadoes and rain events. Florida homes built with ICF are comfortable, cost-saving, safe, and durable.