Business Advice7 min

Why Architects Value LP® FlameBlock® Fire-Rated Sheathing in Multifamily Design

With its design flexibility, strength and cost-saving benefits, LP® FlameBlock® Fire-Rated Sheathing has become a valuable product solution within the architectural community. As an approved component of 8 UL-listed and Intertek-listed wall assemblies, LP FlameBlock sheathing is being specified for multifamily projects as a valuable alternative to potentially reduce or eliminate the use of exterior gypsum. Hear from a few architects on why they chose LP FlameBlock sheathing for their multifamily designs:

  • Denver-based national architecture and design firm Lantz-Boggio Architects used LP FlameBlock sheathing on Castle Pines, a 176-unit continuing care senior living campus. Dwight Miller, Associate Principal at Lantz-Boggio, explained why the 1-sided and 2-sided LP FlameBlock sheathing brought value to this design.

When using plywood or structural wood panels behind the gypsum sheathing on the exterior side of the wall, there is the material and labor cost to install at least two layers of sheathing, as well as the additional schedule time for installation and inspections of multiple layers. Secondly, to have a 2-hour exterior wall that is stacked below a 1-hour exterior wall would either require some means of transitioning between the change in plane, or to continue the third layer of gypsum sheathing up the 1-hour wall,” said Miller. “By using the 1-sided and 2-sided LP FlameBlock, I was able to overcome all of these obstacles with two products that are easily identifiable by the contractor (based on the 1-side or 2-side coating) and that install the same as regular plywood.” 

  • Grimm & Parker Architects used two-sided LP FlameBlock sheathing on a complex of student dormitories as an alternative to an assembly that would require two layers of exterior gypsum. The design was complex, but with the two-sided LP FlameBlock sheathing, Project Manager Vinay Ganeshan was able to efficiently meet his design goals.

The structural engineer played an important role in this,” said Ganeshan. “It was a very intricate shear design, and when they learned about the product they knew LP FlameBlock sheathing was the right choice.” 

  • Poole & Poole Architecture LLC built a 250-unit multifamily apartment complex using LP FlameBlock sheathing on the exterior walls. According to David Kelly, the Poole & Poole project manager, he recommends LP FlameBlock sheathing to others. According to Kelley, the biggest advantage of working with LP FlameBlock sheathing was that it only required a single layer of gypsum versus two layers of exterior gypsum.

I would venture to say that the biggest advantage is that it eliminates an exterior layer,” said Kelly. “I have recommended LP FlameBlock in the past and will continue to do so.

Interested in specifying LP FlameBlock Fire-Rated Sheathing for your next project? Head over to Architect's Corner to learn which UL listed assembly is right for your project’s needs.

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Business Advice4 min

Choosing Materials: Best Siding for Cold Climates

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?

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Business Advice4 min
Best House Sheathing for Cold Climates

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.

Business Advice5 min
Building a House During Winter: Cold Weather Construction Safety Tips

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.

Business Advice4 min
Engineered Wood Siding in Multifamily Developments

Engineered wood siding has long been considered a trustworthy exterior product for single-family homes, but it is often overlooked for multifamily and commercial construction. LP® SmartSide® products are versatile enough for a range of builds beyond traditional single-family homes. Take a look at the homes featured in Madison Parade of Homes for siding inspiration and to see how LP SmartSide Trim & Siding might suit your building needs.