Brought to you by Nudura
What is the name of a home less expensive to live in, better for your health and that maximizes your property value?
LEED, or Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design, is a building-rating system for environmental performance supported by the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) and globally recognized as a symbol of sustainability achievement.
Once homeowners understand the benefits of LEED for their new home, the next question is, "How do I do it?"
First, remember three letters: ICF.
NUDURA ICFs (Insulated Concrete Forms) consist of two panels of Expanded Polystyrene (EPS) foam that can be stacked like Legos, then steel reinforced and filled with concrete, which creates a 'green' building envelope for your home in one step. Tools like a LEED credit reference guide and calculator explain LEED rating categories where ICFs play a huge role.
Next, find a trained ICF installer.
ICFs are one of the largest contributors to a building’s overall LEED rating, so you want to find a certified installer who understands everything from pouring concrete and reinforcement to interior and exterior finish applications. Thousands of building professionals worldwide have completed training to become a certified ICF installer.
Today’s rising fuel costs and strict energy requirements put pressure on us to heat and cool our homes more efficiently and conserve resources. LEED for Homes requires both.
Homes built with ICFs significantly reduce energy consumption and CO2 emissions by limiting the amount of fossil fuels needed for heating and cooling.
The unique design of NUDURA ICFs also limits unused material during the construction process, helping to save valuable environmental resources. The material of the plastic webs is 100 percent recycled from high-density polypropylene. The foam emits no harmful chemicals such as CFCs, HCFCs or VOCs, and is 100 percent recyclable, resulting in less landfill waste.
What is the point of building an energy efficient home if you can’t be comfortable in it?
Not only is concrete one of the most sustainable materials, it also creates a healthy and comfortable living environment for you and your family.
Concrete virtually eliminates air gaps, minimizing the potential for mold growth and draft paths. As a result, ICFs create an airtight structure which improves air quality in the home.
Another benefit: concrete construction enables ICFs to act as an effective sound barrier. These products dampen sound vibrations from unwanted outside noise, such as traffic, trains and neighbors, providing STC (Sound Transmission Class) ratings as high as STC 50. According to the National Institute for Research in Construction in Canada, typical interior walls have a rating of about STC 33.
A central consideration for LEED points is how efficiently mechanical systems in a building can heat, cool and ventilate an area
The stable thermal mass of concrete helps ICFs provide performance values of up to R-50, compared to an average of R-20 for a wood framed building. As a result, ICF construction can generate energy savings of up to 60 percent when used alongside other energy-efficient products in the building design.
According to USGBC, there are more than 92,000 projects using LEED as a benchmark for success. On average, another 2.2 million square feet are LEED certified every day in more than 165 countries and territories around the world. Will your home be next?