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Energy Savings and Comfort of SIP Panels

Q. WHAT IS THE R-VALUE AND WHY DO R-CONTROL SIP STRUCTURES OUTPERFORM CONVENTIONALLY CONSTRUCTED BUILDINGS AND HOMES WITH THE SAME R-VALUE?

R-value of SIPs A. R-Control SIPs are manufactured in various thickness with values of R-15, R-23, R-30, R-37, and R-45.

The R-value of a material or wall assembly was not intended to be the measure of thermal efficiency of a home. R-Value only measures resistance to heat loss by conduction. Other forms of heat loss are convection, radiation and especially infiltration (leakage). Conventional framing with batt insulation promotes convection, radiant and infiltration heat loss. Testing at Oak Ridge National Laboratories (ORNL) showed that R-Control SIP walls are far superior to conventional stick frame and batt insulated walls. A 4-1/2” R-Control SIP panel was 45% better than 2x4’s with R-13 batt insulation and in fact was also better than 2x6’s with R-19 batt insulation.

Q. WHAT IS THE AIR LEAKAGE OF R-CONTROL SIP STRUCTURES?

A. ORNL tested R-Control SIPs side by side with stick construction. The results were impressive – the air leakage from the R-Control SIP construction was less than 10% of the stick construction. This translates into a more comfortable structure with fewer drafts and lower utility bills.

ORNL Testing on SIPs

Q. SINCE R-CONTROL STRUCTURES ARE SO AIR TIGHT, DO THEY REQUIRE ADDITIONAL HVAC CONSIDERATIONS?

A. Yes. The increased R-value and lower air leakage means that heating and cooling equipment must be designed for a high performance structure. This translates into lower capacity heating and cooling units and most importantly lower cost units. Since R-Control SIP structures are so air tight, air exchangers are required as part of the HVAC system to bring fresh air into the structure while simultaneously exhausting air from the structure to ensure optimum indoor air quality. Comfort to the occupants is unparalleled.

Q. HOW DO R-CONTROL SIPs HELP THE ENVIRONMENT?

A. Many ways! The raw materials in R-Control SIPs have low energy requirements to make them. The structural facings of R-Control SIPs are made from renewable controlled growth wood resources. For years and years R-Control SIP structures will save fuel used for heating and cooling. The resulting pollutants from burning fuels like natural gas, oil and coal are dramatically reduced. The environment is then spared the contributing “green house” effect of burning additional fuels that conventionally built structures require.

Q. CAN R-CONTROL SIPs BE USED FOR GREEN BUILDING INITIATIVES?

A. Yes. R-Control SIPS have been used to build many homes and office buildings that achieve EPA’s ENERGY STAR Ratings or USGBC’s LEED Certification. And SIPs are a main component used in ORNL’s NetZero Energy homes as well as the building system of choice by many leading universities for the Solar Decathalon Design competition.