Just like solar technology, Rolling Stones, hip-hugging jeans and other ‘70s artifacts, structural insulated panels (SIPs) are making a big come back. In truth, they never went away; the industry has been quietly growing at a healthy pace among all new home construction. But now with energy costs quadrupling in many regions of the United States, home buyers are rediscovering SIPs in record numbers.
For builders, this system offers labor savings, strength and thermal performance. This is why Carolina Diversified Builders offers this building system in South Carolina and North Carolina. Central to the appeal of structural insulated panels or SIPs is that it combines structural elements, sheathing and insulation into a single step—setting a panel. It’s a deceptively simple yet effective way to increase a building’s energy performance.
Recent studies by the government’s Oak Ridge National Laboratories (ORNL) confirm SIPs out perform stick framing and batt insulation industry in variety of tests. Testing indicates SIPs perform at 97% of their stated R-value (compared to stick & batt’s 70%) and that SIPs are 15 times better at stopping air leaks.
Although individual products from manufacturers can vary, SIPs share the common characteristic of a rigid foam core sandwiched between two exterior “skins.” The concept behind SIPs is not a new technology. Ancient Egyptians developed the art of bonding slices of wood together to obtain superior structural performance. It was Alden B. Dow, brother of the Dow Chemical founder, who first used SIPs as load bearing walls, roofs and interior partitions for three homes built inMidland,MI, in the 1950s that are still in use today.
Carolina Diversified Builders uses SIPs Team USA for all its structural insulated panel needs. Check out this YouTube video of a time lapse of construction.