Insulated Concrete Form (ICF)
We specialize in designing homes using ICF construction methods.
What is ICF?
ICF stands for Insulated Concrete forms; it is a system of insulated concrete forms for reinforced concrete that stay in place as a permanent interior and exterior substrate for walls, floors, and roofs.
The forms are interlocking units that are dry-stacked (Lego bricks are a simplified way to imagine ICF). The webbing between the insulation panels is specially designed to hold rows of steel rebar; which provides the reinforcement to the concrete that will be poured. After the rebar has been placed in the webbing, the concrete can be poured into the formwork. The forms are then left in place and provide very high “R” values (measure of thermal resistance).
Insulated concrete forms can be used to construct:
- Foundation walls
- Floor systems
- Main floor walls
There is a higher level of complexity with ICF construction that comes with advantages and disadvantages. ICF walls are very thick and can take up important floor space, therefore detailed design is crucial to this building method.
However, homes designed with ICF have superior sound insulation, excellent earthquake resistance, and minimal fire hazard.
Because house plans designed with ICF require more space and structural engineering, an experienced designer is a necessity. We have been designing with ICF for many years which allows us to utilize our knowledge of what it requires right from the start of each design.
For more information on ICF and designing your new home with ICF, please contact us!