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Termite Resistant Basement Foundation Wall SIPs


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By Darren in McKeesport, PA on 11/27/2018


I have read much on SIPs and would like to employ them in an OB home.


I live in SW Pennsylvania and while I understand the benefits of using a FPSF instead of a full basement, I know it would kill resale if I go that route.

Also, given my area, termite and radon risks are both significant. For radon I plan to bury perforated pipe in a layer of compacted gravel with rigid insulation and vapor barrier between the gravel and a monolithic slab/footer.

I'd like to build the basement foundation walls with SIPs (ICFs would be my second choice, but I'd rather have the insulation on the outside only for thermal mass reasons). I've read about wooden  basement foundation walls, even in termite country, but it's not an idea I'm comfortable with.

I plan to use a floor/ceiling truss system designed for HVAC, plumbing, electrical, and other systems distribution. SIPs for ground floor exterior as well as roof. (Roof will be a bit odd with a 4' wide strip at 24:12 for optimum winter solar, bulk at about 6:12 for optimum fixed angle solar, and the northern side from the ridge at something in between, potentially moving the ridge north of the centerline.)

Anybody have any experience, expertise, or insights?

-+-

SIPs: Structural Insulated Panels
OB: Owner-Builder
FPSF: Frost Protected Shallow Foundation
ICFs: Insulated Concrete Forms
HVAC: Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning
Optimum Winter Angle: for me 59.6°
Optimum Annual Angle: 33.5°

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