The Advantages of ICF for Garage Construction
An ideal product for today’s multi-purpose, energy-efficient, safe, and comfortable garages is Fox Blocks insulated concrete forms (ICFs).
Today’s Multi-Purpose Garage
Today’s homeowners consider the garage an extension of their home, serving many purposes other than storing a car. Homeowners want garages designed with organized storage, a workshop, mother-in-law suite, and more. Like their houses, the garage must also include energy-efficient lighting, heating, and cooling features.
Importantly, whether the garage is attached or detached from the house, homeowners want a secure garage that protects their expensive possessions, cars, and equipment from theft, fire, or natural disasters. Modern garages serve as annexes of the home; therefore, today’s garage should be energy-efficient and moisture-, disaster-, and fire-resistant.
5 Reasons Why ICF Are Ideal for Garage Construction
1. ICF Garages are Energy-Efficient
A garage built with ICF foundation and walls is energy-efficient because ICF provides continuous insulation across all structural members of the building’s envelope. Continuous insulation is essential to reducing air infiltration, preventing the flow of heat and energy, stopping thermal bridging, and increasing the effective R-value in a wall system.
ICF is also a high thermal mass material, which helps stabilize temperature shifts within a garage by slowing the rate of heat transfer. ICF wall systems build energy-efficient garages.
2. ICF Garages are Moisture-Resistant
ICFs, like Fox Blocks, provide a solid continuous monolithic concrete wall with a perm rating of less than 1.0, which controls moisture intrusion. Moisture control is essential, particularly when the garage is used to store expensive equipment, family photos, etc. Moisture control also prohibits the growth of mold and mildew, which is unhealthy for the occupants of the garage.
The moisture-resistance of ICF construction creates a healthy indoor environment for those working or living in the garage space. The moisture control of ICF construction also protects items stored in the space.
3. ICF Garages are Disaster-Resistant
ICF garages have stronger structural integrity against tornadoes, hurricanes, and other extreme weather events than steel- and wood-framed garages. In fact, a report by the Portland Cement Association (PCA) compared the structural load resistance of ICF walls to framed walls. The report concluded that concrete walls have greater structural capacity and stiffness to resist the in-plane shear forces of high wind than wood- and steel-framed walls.
Furthermore, a study by Texas Tech University concluded that ICF walls resist the impact of wind-driven hazards, while framed walls didn’t stop the penetration of airborne debris. ICF construction creates disaster-resistant garages.
4. ICF Garages are Fire-Resistant
Non-toxic fire retardant expanded polystyrene foam and steel-reinforced concrete are used to make ICF, which gives it a high fire rating. A high fire rating means that if a fire starts in the garage, it is better contained and less likely to spread to surrounding property than with a garage made of wood. ICF construction creates a fire-resistant garage.
5. ICFs Easily Adapt to Any Garage Plan
The design flexibility of ICF creates functional and aesthetically pleasing garages with curves, arches, and intricate patterns. Whether the garage is only used to park a car or includes extra living space, ICF can accommodate all garage plans.
ICF garages are also compatible with any finishing or siding products: stone, brick, wood or vinyl siding, plasters or plasterboards, etc., along with other non-structural building components like roofing, flooring, and utilities. ICF construction creates attractive and multifaceted garages.
An Ideal Product for Today’s Multi-Purpose Garage is Fox Blocks Insulated Concrete Form
- Fox Blocks are a high thermal mass product that provides continuous insulation with an R-value of 23. Importantly, Fox Blocks exceeds ASHRAE/ANSI 90.1 energy code requirements, and create energy-efficient garages with exceptional energy performance.
- Fox Blocks controls moisture intrusion.
- Garages constructed with Fox Block insulated concrete forms (ICF) maintain their integrity during intense winds of over 200 mph, and projectile debris traveling over 100 MPH.
- Fox Blocks have a fire-resistance rating (ASTM E119) of two hours for the four-inch blocks and four hours for the six-inch blocks.
- For termite-resistance of an ICF wall system, Fox Blocks recommends an application of a waterproofing and a termite membrane like Polyguard Products, Inc. 650 XTM or 650 XTP membranes. These two products were assessed and approved by SBCCI PST and ES for waterproofing and a termite protection membrane for ICFs.
For homeowners determined to protect their garage and the contents inside it, Fox Block ICF is an excellent material choice. ICFs also create an energy-efficient, disaster and moisture-resistant garage.
Initial costs of ICF may reflect a slight increase to traditional wood-frame construction expenses, but ICF garages are more energy-efficient than wood-frame garages, which saves money over time.
Please contact Fox Blocks for more information on ICF garage construction.