The form faces of polystyrene are held apart by plastic pieces...these are commonly referred to as "webs" or "ties". These plastic parts have a flat flange, typically about 1-5/8" wide that is held recessed below the surface of the foam face and the foam face is embossed at these locations to make the location of the web easily distinguishable.
What does an ICF Home look like when it is finished?
An ICF Home looks like any conventional new home on the inside and on the outside. The window sills are deeper since the walls are thicker. Very few people can tell the difference between ICF construction and other types of construction.
Question: How do I know what equipment and manpower I will need in order to build an ICF Home?
Answer: You can get a good idea of what is required as far as tools, equipment and manpower is necessary by reading a Technical Manual about ICF Construction, which we will be happy to provide for you. You may also feel free to call our office and arrange to send your house plans to us for a free, no-obligation material and labor estimate.
How long do we need to wait after placing the concrete to backfill or put floor and roof systems onto the ICF Walls?
You should wait a minimum of seven days and follow guidelines set by your structural engineer.
What kind of siding can be used on ICF Systems?
Answer: Virtually any conventional exterior finish can be used with an ICF System. Proper planning should be considered. Check your technical manual for details.
Question: Can we use stucco on Insulating Concrete Forms?
Answer: Yes. Any type of stucco can be applied directly to the EPS Forms.
Question: We would like to build our house ourselves. Can we buy an ICF System and install it?
Answer: Yes. You can install an ICF Building System by yourself. You should, however, employ an ICF Contractor to assist you with the concrete placement activities.
Do you have to use special plans for an ICF System?
Answer: No. Conventional house plans can be used. You must simply have the exterior wall thickness increased to show the ICF Wall.
Question: How tall can you build with an ICF Building System?
Answer: A structural engineer should design buildings constructed with an ICF Building System, but the sky is the limit.
Question: Do ICF Walls sweat?
Answer: No. EPS Foam is a poor conductor of heat and cold. Therefore, water vapor that may be present in the structure will not condense on the walls.
Question: Will termites eat the EPS Foam?
Answer: No. Termites do not eat the EPS Foam. Termites will, however, burrow through the foam to get to wood.
Question: Which ties are better - plastic or metal?
Answer: Today's plastics offer strength, durability and lower thermal conductivity than metals, so plastic is the best choice in an ICF System.
Question: Can the concrete being placed in ICF Forms be mechanically vibrated?
Answer: Yes, most ICF Forms are engineered to withstand the rigors of internal vibration. "Patting" or "tapping" the exterior of the forms is not an effective method of concrete vibration.
Question: Do the ICF Blocks ‘off gas’?
Answer: ICF Blocks are inert, non-toxic and do not 'off gas'.
How do I hang inside drywall?
Most of the better brands that have plastic webs have integral fastening points located just under the foam. These points correspond to the web locations. A quick search on a search engine of the brand name and drywall or sheetrock should take you right to the page that explains the process.