Building a Wind-Resistant Home with Insulated Concrete Forms

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An excellent choice for wind-resistant home design is Fox Blocks insulated concrete forms (ICF). Fox Blocks build wind-resistant walls that protect a house, the valued contents and family from dangerous winds and flying debris during severe wind events.

Wind-Resistant Home Design is Critical to a Family's Safety

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A wind-resistant home protects the house and the family from dangerous wind events like hurricanes and tornadoes. During a severe wind event, both a collapsing house and flying debris threaten the lives of the occupants of a home. Tragically, between 2000 and 2017 there were 894 wind and 1417 tornado-related deaths. In 2017, 36 percent of the wind and 63 percent of the tornado-related fatalities happened either in a mobile or permanent home. A wind-resistant design is critical to a home's integrity and a family’s safety.

Critical Elements of a Wind-Resistant Home

A wind-resistant home should remain standing during and after strong wind events. It should also have the strength to prevent flying debris from penetrating the wall system.

Essential to wind-resistant home design is a continuous load path, impact resistance, and strong roofs, walls, floors, and foundations. In addition, FEMA, highly recommends a safe room1, or tornado shelter, for maximum protection to a home's occupants during a severe wind event.

A Continuous Load Path is Vital to a Wind-Resistant Home

A continuous load path is a home’s best protection against intense winds. When uplift and lateral (horizontal) loads attack a house, a continuous load path will transfer the loads from the roof, wall, and other parts, toward the foundation and into the ground. A strong continuous load path is key to holding the roof, walls, floor, and foundation together during strong winds of over 200 mph.

Impact Resistance is Crucial to a Wind-Resistant Home

An impact resistant wall system, like one built with ICF, is essential for protecting a structure and its occupants from flying debris during a severe wind event. Notability, ICF walls produce greater resistance to damage from flying debris than wood-framed walls. Homes constructed with ICF walls preserve the house and protect its occupants from flying debris during severe wind events of over 100 mph.

Fox Block ICFs Create Wind-Resistant Homes

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Homes built with Fox Blocks insulated concrete forms (ICFs ) ensure a wind-resistant house with a strong continuous load path that holds the walls, floors, foundation, and roof together during an intense wind event. Fox Blocks also resist projectile debris traveling over 100 mph.

Fox Blocks Home Stand up to an EF5 Tornado

For example, in 2013, a powerful EF5 tornado that hit Moore, Oklahoma proved the strength and integrity of Fox Blocks ICFs. The tragic event wiped out most of Moore’s neighborhoods, and killed 24 and injured 212 people. Left standing, however, was a ICF home built in 2004. For maximum safety against severe wind events, homeowners, builders, and architects are wise to select Fox Blocks ICF for their next home construction project.

Roof Construction of a Wind-Resistant Home

During dangerous strong-winds, home failures often begin with damage to the roof. A roof’s role, in a continuous load path, is to move the loads imposed by intense winds to the supporting walls underneath. The roof sheathing and framing move lateral loads to the home’s shear walls. For the protection of a home during an intense wind event, the house and sizing of the roof framing and sheathing must be in accordance with the wind forces of the area.

Roof Sheathing

FEMA’s Building Framing Systems and Best Practices authorizes the use of common nails to connect roof sheathing to supporting components in regions where wind speeds are less than 100 mph. In higher-wind regions, FEMA mandates ring-shank nails. Recommended in the corner zones eaves of the roof, where winds can cause massive uplifts, are wood nails.

Roof Framing

After the roof sheathing, the roof framing is the next component found within the load path of a building. The roof framing moves lateral loads to the shear walls. The rafters of a roof’s frame must be sized to withstand the weight of the roof system, and also the loads produced by wind.

Floor Construction of Wind Resistant Homes

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The floor system of the continuous load path moves the loads to the shear walls in the floors below or to the foundation. Floor framing often consists of dimensional lumber, or floor joists, spanning an open area. Floor joists must be sized to withstand the loads of the whole floor system along with vertical loads. The floor of a wind-resistant home ensures the loads reach the foundation and eventually the ground.

A wind-resistant home must include a continuous load path that protects against flying debris and keeps the roof, walls, floors, and foundation attached during a severe wind event. An excellent product for a wind-resistant home is Fox Blocks ICFS. Fox Blocks build wind-resistant walls that protect a house and family from treacherous winds and flying debris. For more information on wind-resistant home design, please visit Fox Blocks.