Structural Insulated Panels at Carlisle

By: Roseann Henry, This Old House television

The news photos of Hurricane Charley’s impact on Florida made a lot of people wonder just how strong their own homes are. We don’t get a lot of hurricanes around Boston, although they do sometimes take their last gasp up here after the worst is over down south. We get our share of other storms, though, including some wicked nor’easters. And we think about building strength all the time anyway, since we want the houses we work on to still be standing 100 years or more from now, no matter what kinds of storms roar through.

Strength is one of the biggest arguments in favor of panel construction over traditional wood framing. In panel construction, beams and studs are replaced by structural insulated panels, or SIPs, which consist of a foam core sandwiched between layers of oriented strand board. We’ll admit that we’re traditionalists and, yes, we like to frame the old-fashioned way. But when you hear about panel buildings surviving hurricanes and earthquakes while their traditionally framed neighbors shatter into sticks, you have to take notice.

Read the full article here

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