If you see a house under construction, you’ll typically notice a framework of timber which becomes the base for the structure. However, you won’t see the same with a home construction using SIPs (structural insulated panels). Although SIPs have been around since the 1950s, many people are still unfamiliar with them. When SIPs originally came about, there was a trend in building homes using energy-efficient materials. But when energy became more affordable, the trend eventually died out until recently, when there came a renewed focus on using eco-friendly materials for building homes, primarily as an effort to be eco-friendlier. Here are some of the common questions asked about SIPs.
Are SIPs really eco-friendly?
Some people still question the eco-friendly properties of SIP panels because they utilise synthetic foam insulation and wood board. Nevertheless, many manufacturers use recycled wood and other components to build an eco-friendlier SIP. Additionally, SIPs are labelled as a green product primarily because of their insulation properties which help reduce the energy consumption of a home.
How do SIPs perform in terms of structural integrity?
SIPs have an excellent load bearing capacity. When you build an entire structure using SIPs, it disperses the load uniformly through the whole structure surface area. Before SIPs became a standard building material, extensive tests were conducted by manufacturers to ensure that SIPs have the load bearing capacity with sufficient strength and safety for homes and buildings.
Are there restrictions when using SIPs?
If you are building a structure entirely out of SIPs, you can only build up to a maximum of three floors. But if you will be combining SIPs with other building materials for improved structural integrity, there won’t be many restrictions with the building. Many commercial building projects use SIPs in combination with concrete, steel, and timber for maximum strength and structural integrity.
How affordable are SIPs?
The cost of building with SIPs depends on the size and housing style. If you also want to minimise the cost of making a home using SIPs, you’ll need to compare prices offered by different manufacturers across the UK. Some suppliers accommodate requests according to your budget and tailor-fit a solution that suits your needs.
What makes SIPs energy efficient?
The unique structure consisting of an insulation foam sandwiched between two boards creates an air-tight cavity and a completely sealed envelope. By maintaining the air-tightness of a structure, you can keep heat inside and reduce heat loss.
Is it easy to build using SIPs?
If you are building a home and would like to use SIPs, you’ll likely need the assistance of an architect and a builder. Although most architects and builders are familiar with SIPs, not many of them use SIPs extensively. It is essential that you find a builder with experience using SIPs if you want to ensure that the panels are installed correctly; otherwise, improper installation compromises the energy-efficient properties of SIPs and you might end up with additional problems with the structural integrity of your home.