Designing to meet code requirements is not always an easy process- but building codes, and particularly those addressing fire, are designed to protect the lives of building occupants and first responders and therefore will continue to be a key component to the design and construction of buildings.
Fortunately, there are often multiple ways to meet code requirement with fire-rated wall assemblies and LP FlameBlock® Fire-Rated® OSB Sheathing offers architects and designers an opportunity to meet code requirements while saving money and time compared to alternative assembly options.
Featuring an ignition-resistant Pyrotite® coating, LP FlameBlockOSB is a listed component in fire-rated interior wall assemblies, exterior wall assemblies, and roof deck applications. The fire-rated structural sheathing provides 15-minute thermal barrier protection, a 30-minute Class A flame spread rating, and a combination of flame spread resistance and burn-through resistance. What’s more, it provides additional value in the form of strength, savings, and greater design flexibility and is versatile enough for use in Type II, III, and V construction.
Because structural design values for LP FlameBlock sheathing are not reduced by the fire-retardant treatment, the panel carries load/span and shear design values equivalent to an untreated wood structural panel in the same panel thickness category. Using LP FlameBlock sheathing in fire-rated wall assemblies can provide more flexibility in design of wall openings as well as more options in framing and bracing to meet structural requirements. Finally, each panel carries an Exposure 1 classification, meaning it can withstand exposure to moisture during normal construction delays.
Cost & Labor Savings
With these characteristics, LP FlameBlock sheathing can be used to create assemblies that are more efficient than those using double layers of gypsum or gypsum combined with FRT plywood, helping to improve construction timelines and reduce labor costs.
As an alternative to assemblies using FRT plywood and gypsum, LP FlameBlock OSB allows a reduction of layers which results in a thinner panel and increased design flexibility. Installation of exterior facing is simplified by fastening into and through LP FlameBlock OSB rather than a combined layer of FRT plywood and gypsum.
For example, in a two-hour rated, load-bearing partition wall, fire-rated on both sides, commonly used for multifamily projects and townhomes, the assembly consists of Type X gypsum, LP FlameBlock OSB, and fiberglass insulation on each side of a double 2x4 stud assembly. The use of LP FlameBlock OSB saves labor and reduces dead load by eliminating the use of Shaft Wall Liner. It also brings an STC rating of 62.
Such savings can be achieved on the exterior, as well. For example, Grimm+Parker Architects used LP FlameBlock OSB for a wood-over-concrete-podium mixed-use university housing project building in Maryland. The two sided LP FlameBlock Sheathing was used in place of one layer of FRT Plywood and gypsum board. Not only did this save the expense of gypsum board, but the contractor was able to use the same crews already working on site since the same tools and techniques are used to work with LP FlameBlock sheathing as with standard OSB sheathing.
Certainly, meeting codes requirements could mean increasing expenses, but advancing product technologies are offering builders and designers more options that reduce installation time and materials—helping to ease the burden on tight budgets.
Sheds and other outdoor building structures serve as practical ways to add storage or create additional living and working space. In recent years, sheds have become a trending focus for homeowners looking to maximize their space or level-up their exteriors. If you’re looking to purchase a shed and need some inspiration, LP® SmartSide® engineered wood siding styles can help you achieve a variety of goals for your outdoor structure. To spark some inspiration, we spoke with David Parraguirre, also known as The Mexican Carpenter, about his customized shed build.Continue Reading
January and February typically usher in the season’s coldest temperatures, bringing the need to use building materials that can withstand frigid temperatures with them. However, it’s often the freeze/thaw cycle––cold days followed by quick warm-ups––that can cause significant damage to a home’s siding. So, what is the best siding for cold climates to combat this?
With temperatures dropping, insulation and protecting new construction against the elements are top of mind. Of course, builders must consider how insulated wall sheathing can help meet code requirements and contribute to the overall performance of the building envelope. However, they must also carefully consider potential moisture problems both during and after the build and the potential impacts of freeze/thaw cycles. With the season of potential hard freezes followed by fast warm-ups upon us, let’s explore methods for choosing the best house sheathing for cold climates.
With housing demand at an all-time high, builders do not have the ability to halt home construction during the winter months. Builders can work safely year round, even building houses during winter with planning and preparation. Advanced products and installation methods allow work to be performed during wet and very cold temperatures, but builders also need to consider winter safety for construction workers.