Insulating Concrete Forms

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Insulating Concrete Forms

Key Takeaways

  • Legacy ICF block-insulated walls provide excellent sound insulation, preventing outside noise from penetrating the walls. Compared to a regular wood frame wall, about 75%-85% less sound passes through a Legacy sound-insulated wall.
  • BuildBlock Insulating Concrete Forms make concrete comfortable, safe, quiet, and energy efficient. These ICFs survive natural disasters better than those made using traditional construction methods. BuildBlock Building major insulating concrete forms (ICF) are 100% reversible and always fit no matter how you turn it.
  • According to Mr. Boeshart, LiteForm can ship more than 7,000 square feet of forms on a single flatbed, which becomes its advantage as fuel prices continue to soar. Liteform also reduces carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions and job site space. LiteForm's folding technique dramatically reduces shipping costs and job site space by 55%.
  • Fox Blocks Integrated Learning Center offers detailed step-by-step practice installation courses on their website, and one can finish at their own pace. Students are awarded a certificate and a wallet card to signify successful completion of the online training courses. With advice from Fox Blocks experts, students can access an entire library of educational and application videos to improve their skills and techniques.

Introduction

The research provides information on insulating concrete forms in the United States. For the first part of the project, the chosen companies are leaders as they sell ICF, have a good reputation, and use environmentally friendly techniques. These companies are BuildBlock Building Systems, Liteform, and Legacy Block. For every identified company above, we provide a website, an overview of the company, and the products or services offered.

In the second part of the research, we offer training courses or certification programs available in the US around insulating concrete forms (ICF). For every course or training, we offer the company offering the course or training website, describe the training and the necessary fees for respective courses where available. Training courses specific to environmental-friendly ICF was limited in the public domain. Below, we provide our findings, and in the 'Research Strategy,' we provide our research approach.

A. Leaders in Green/environmentally Friendly Insulating Concrete Forms (ICF).

I. BuildBlock Building Systems

Company Overview

  • BuildBlock Building Systems was founded in 2004 by CEO Mike Garrett. Previously Mike had served as a top distributor for two other major insulating concrete forms (ICF) companies and had spent more than 12 years in insulating concrete forms construction and distribution and over 15 years in residential and small commercial construction. He pioneered the use of insulating concrete forms in Oklahoma.
  • Garrett started BuildBlock Building Systems to address the problems and costs he encountered in other ICF forms. His vast and extensive experience of 15 years building homes and small commercial structures and 12 years of experience in ICF distribution laid a solid foundation to form one of the most installer-friendly ICFs in the market today.
  • BuildBlock Insulating Concrete Forms make concrete comfortable, safe, quiet, and energy efficient. These ICFs survive natural disasters better than those made using traditional construction methods. BuildBlock Building major insulating concrete forms (ICF) are 100% reversible and always fit no matter how you turn them. According to reviews from several users, these ICFs have an excellent reputation. For instance, Jacqueline Ulrich, a design Build specialist, says that BuildBlock ICFs are light and easy to use.

Green ICF Products Sold by the Company

BuildBlock ICF

  • BuildBlock ICFs are the "strongest and most energy-efficient building materials available today." Insulating Concrete Forms (ICFs) are used in building homes, churches, schools, and other commercial buildings.
  • Opting for Insulating Concrete Forms in one's construction means saving money and feeling secure at home. BuildBlock insulating concrete forms combine the standard features of ICFs with features that eradicate waste, reduce labor and complexity and deliver better outcomes.

BuildLock KnockDown

  • BuildLock Knockdown ICFs create walls with concrete cores of 4’’-24+" or thicker. BuildLock Knockdown forms are made flat to save shipping and build whatever wall thickness a project requires.
  • The BuildLock is the most robust knockdown product available today. BuildLock Knockdown is usually available in 4", 6", 8", 10", 12" or more core widths, is the strongest web available on the market, and blocks ship flat to reduce shipping cost and increase the product storage capacity. KD is simple, quick to assemble on-site, and has reversible webs for rebar locations.

BuildBuck ICF Door & Window Bucking

  • BuildBuck ICF Door & Window Bucking forms a strong, seamless insulated transition, from insulating concrete forms walls to door and window openings. This product is an integrated insulating concrete form for residential and commercial projects.
  • Other BuildBlock products are BuildRadius, BuildDeck, BuildBrace, BuildShield Termite & Firestop, and Accessories.

II. Liteform

Company Overview

  • Pat Boeshart, founder and CEO of LiteForm, formed LiteForm Technologies in South Sioux City, Nebraska. Previously, Boeshart was a professional contractor specializing in custom homes construction. After a successful introduction to insulating concrete form construction in the 1980s, he invented and patented the components for the LiteForm concrete forming system.
  • Boeshart says that folding technology is a significant feature of LiteForm, which allows the pre-assembled insulating concrete form (ICF) blocks to fold flat for easy packaging, shipping, and handling. According to Mr. Boeshart, LiteForm can ship more than 7,000 square feet of forms on a single flatbed, which becomes its advantage as fuel prices continue to soar. Liteform also reduces carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions and job site space. LiteForm's folding technique dramatically reduces shipping costs and job site space by 55%.
  • LiteForm has a good reputation. Frank Froelich of Hinton wanted products to keep concrete from heaving and cracking for several years. He visited LiteForm and bought FlexxBoard25 and Helix products. FlexxBoard25 is a rigid foam insulation designed for under concrete, and according to Froelich, the rigid foam keeps the frost away from the concrete and from lifting the concrete. Froelich reiterates that the concrete has not moved slightly, even in the cold weather.

Green ICF Products Sold by the Company

VibraDoser

  • The VibraDoser is a vibrating grate used to dose concrete trucks with Helix Micro rebar and other activities. The VibraDoser is set on the chute of the ready mix truck, plugged into a 110v outlet, and then the product is ready to go. VIbraDoser works from vehicle or skid loader power inverters.

Bracing


  • Liteform offers a lightweight bracing method to contractors, making it possible to rent or purchase the bracing directly from LiteForn.

Polyguard Waterproof Membrane

  • Polyguard is a 60 mil waterproof membrane that is peeled and stuck to defend against moisture issues for insulating concrete forms foundations.

LifeForm Brickledge

III. Legacy Block

Company Overview

  • Legacy Block came into existence in 1972 after a series of development, testing, engineering, redesigning, and expanding applications of the production process followed to obtain a state-of-the-art product.
  • A Legacy-insulating concrete form is a stay-in-place ICF system strongly structured. Its strength is up to 700% more than wood frame walls and has the following benefits - Legacy ICFs are sound absorbent, non-combustible, and 100% recyclable. Legacy-insulated concrete forms decrease energy consumption by up to 50%, can withstand level 5 hurricane-force wind, are ecologically clean, and provide unlimited architectural design.
  • Legacy ICFs have minimal air leaks, if any, improving comfort and reducing heat loss compared to walls without an air obstacle. Thermal resistance does not change over time, which makes it permanent energy-saving compared to uninsulated masonry. Legacy ICFs have better sound absorption compared to framed walls.

Green ICF Products Sold by the Company

Soundproof Wall Panels

  • Legacy ICF block-insulated walls provide excellent sound insulation, preventing outside noise from penetrating the walls. Compared to a regular wood frame wall, about 75%-85% less sound passes through a Legacy sound-insulated wall. Scientists describe the outside of the legacy soundproof as virtually inaudible. A survey consisted of 74 new CICF homes and 73 new wood frame homes who were asked to mention features they liked, 60% of CICF homeowners said quietness versus only 2% of wood frame homeowners.

ICF Homes Walls

  • Legacy Block CICF home has steel-reinforced concrete walls that provide a safe and secure space and a structure that can stand the test of time. Homes with steel-reinforced concrete walls are at least 50% stronger than other conventionally poured concrete and about 700% stronger than wood.

B. insulating concrete forms (ICF) Training Courses/Certification ProgramS

I. Online Installer Training

  • Company: Fox Blocks
  • Training Location: Online training sessions.
  • Fox Blocks Integrated Learning Center offers detailed step-by-step practice installation courses on their website, and one can complete at their own pace. Students are awarded a certificate and a wallet card to signify successful completion of the online training courses. With advice from Fox Blocks experts, students can access an entire library of educational and application videos to improve their skills and techniques.
  • In online installer training, courses have been devised as a four-part tiered installer program: a primary installer, journeyman installer, master installer, and elite premier installer. Each course includes unique video training modules, key insights, construction techniques, and benefits of using Fox Blocks.
  • Fox Blocks Primary Installer course is divided into four sections, each containing several pre-built modules, the build, concrete, and post-concrete finishes. The Journeyman Installer training enables you to take the next stages in developing your expertise in Fox Blocks project management, checklists, and estimates.
  • The Master Installer program emphasizes improving your material and labor estimates, creating a marketing plan, and building connections for a prosperous business. The Elite Premier training concludes with some last objectives to encourage your business's success after a brief product overview.
  • Also, Fox Blocks offers 1.0 and 1.5-hour HSW online courses on the AEC Daily website since Fox Blocks provides AIA accreditation. The HSW lectures explicitly cover ICFs' features, advantages, and uses in residential and commercial buildings.
  • Fox Blocks Integrated Learning Center (ILC) has commercial or residential online sessions and is planning to start teaching contractors, architects, and engineers about the merits of the Fox Blocks product line, for all types of buildings, whether
  • All courses offered at Fox Blocks are free.

II. ICF Pool Construction

  • Company: BuildBlock
  • BuildBlock training is offered online.
  • ICF Construction In 30 Steps course teaches learners about the fundamental stages of creating a straightforward BuildBlock insulating concrete forms pool. ICF Pool Construction In 30 Steps course requires one to create an account to access the learning materials. ICF Pool Construction In 30 Steps is also a good course for beginners before enrolling in the Basic ICF Installer Training Course. Insulating concrete forms pool construction In 30 steps course is free for anyone interested in learning.

III. Pouring an ICF Project

  • Company: BuildBlock
  • BuildBlock training is offered online.
  • In the Pouring an ICF Project course, learners are taught 5 simple procedures that make the insulating concrete forms pour simple. Insulating concrete forms walls are made of solid concrete, but working with it might be challenging if one is unprepared. Pouring an ICF project course is free for anyone interested in learning.

IV. ICF Construction in 25 Steps

  • Company: BuildBlock
  • BuildBlock training is offered online.
  • ICF Construction in 25 Steps course teaches trainees the fundamental procedures on all BuildBlock job sites. ICF Construction in 25 Steps course is recommended for beginners before enrolling in the Basic ICF Installer Training Course. ICF Construction in 25 Steps course requires one to create an account to access the learning materials. ICF Construction in 25 Steps course is free for anyone interested in learning.

V. Basic ICF Installation

  • Company: BuildBlock
  • BuildBlock training is offered online.
  • Basic ICF Installation teaches trainees the same basic ICF installer course that BuildBlock offers in training events around the United States. The Basic ICF Installation course requires one to create an account to access the learning materials. Basic ICF Installation is free for anyone interested in learning.

Research Strategy

The research team leveraged the most reputable and publicly available sources to provide information on insulating concrete forms in the United States. We relied on sources such as Build Block, YouTube, LiteForm, and Legacy Block to provide information on the companies that are leaders in green-insulating concrete forms. In the second part of the research, we leveraged the most credible sources, such as Fox Block and Build Block, to provide information on training courses or certification programs in the US. We deep-dived our search into social media like LinkedIn to find training or certification on environmentally friendly ICF, but such information was unavailable in the public domain. We, therefore, provided courses and training on insulating concrete forms in general.

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