EPS Buildings
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Structural Insulated Panels, Equestrian Buildings, SIP Constructions | Graettinger, Iowa & Other States | EPSSimply Better Buildings An Employee-Owned Company
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EPS Home Packages
What does an EPS Home Package include?

EPS manufactured pre-engineered building shell package using structural insulated panels, engineered roof and floor trusses with an optional SIP wood foundation. All window and door openings are factory pre-cut with pre-assembled insulated headers (where required).  EPS shop drawings, floor plan, cross sections and panel connections are also included.

Panel make up
Structural insulated panels (SIPs) are high performance building panels used in floors, walls, and roofs. The panels are made by sandwiching a core of expanded polystyrene (EPS), between two structural skins of oriented strand board (OSB), or plywood. EPS panels have standard overall thicknesses of 4-1/2", 6-1/2", 8-1/4" and 10-1/4". Foundation panels will have a thickness of 8-3/4".

Fabricated panels
Fabricated panels are cut to fit each project and ready to assemble. The panel edges are factory routed to accept plates and splines. Window and door rough openings are cut out and routed. Along with having panels cut to fit, vertical and horizontal wire chases are installed in the panels to make the electricians' job easier. Panels are typically cut from an 8' x 24' master panel. After a panel comes off the CNC machine it could be as large as 7'-11" wide x the height of the ceiling, (jumbos). The panel size will be determined by the engineer. Because each project is unique panel sizes will vary.

Thermal Barrier
Section 26 of the 2006 International Building Code requires all foam plastic insulation to be covered with an approved minimum 15-minute thermal barrier. 7/16" OSB itself does not constitute a 15-minute thermal barrier. All interior panel surfaces must be covered with a minimum of ½" type x sheetrock to provide an adequate thermal barrier.

Bracing and Shoring
All the shoring and bracing is the responsibility of the general contractor. An EPS building package has little or no waste. Extra bracing material can be sent upon request.

Before a project can start
Before an engineer can get started they need a good set of detailed drawings. These drawings need to have a floor plan, foundation plan, elevations and a door and window rough opening schedule. The opening locations will also need to be dimensioned on the plan view. EPS engineers provide detailed structural drawings and panel shop drawings to ensure a structurally sound building. After the engineer has all the information, a detailed set of preliminary drawings will drafted. These drawings will then be sent to the dealer for approval. An approval letter will accompany the drawings. Once the approval letter is returned to the engineer the project will be completed and turned into production. Any changes to the preliminary drawings over and above what was ordered will be required and subsequent change order will be sent to the dealer. If the drawings need engineering seals additional lead times may apply.

EPS Home PackageJob packages will be delivered with a typical tractor trailer and flatbed. The job site will need to be tractor trailer accessible. If job site access is not permitted be prepared to shuttle panels from an alternate location using a smaller vehicle at the contractor's expense. Proper unloading and handling equipment needs to be on site before the panels arrive. EPS does not provide unloading services with jobs that have jumbo panels. EPS packages the panels for optimal efficiency for shipping therefore the panels are rarely in order. Be sure to leave room to sort the panels. Once the panels have been delivered proper storage is important. The panels must be kept dry and stacked on level blocking. EPS will bundle and shrink wrap
all panels. A slit is made at the bottom of the shrink wrap to allow any moisture within the bundle to escape. The shrink wrap is for transportation only and should be removed at the job site. The panels are to be tarp the load once they have been unloaded. It is also recommended to keep all the lumber and spline material covered to keep any excess moisture out of the panels.

Materials List
EPS offers a complete structural framing package. The following items are provided in a standard EPS panel package.
Wall Panels:
  • 2x Base plate (treated if required)
  • Pre-cut wall panels with door and window cut outs
  • Headers (if required)
  • Spline and stud material
  • 2x material for door and window bucks
  • 1 ½" horizontal wire chase 16" & 44" off floor(optional)
  • 1 ½" Vertical wire chases approximately 4' O.C.
  • Double 2x top plate / Single double beveled w/ roof panels
  • Expanding foam with disposable gun (2-part optional)
  • Sealants & caulk, construction adhesive
  • 2x foundation sill plate (optional)
  • Hand drive or Paslode nails
  • Seam tape (if required)
Roof Panels:
  • Pre-cut roof panels
  • 2x panel edging
  • Spline material (2x, LVL, surface as required by span & loading)
  • Expanding foam with disposable gun (2-part optional)
  • Wire chase at spline
  • Ridge or mid-span beams (if required)
  • Out-looker & rake material (if required)
  • Hand drive or paslode nails
Foundation Panel:
  • Pre-cut foundation panel
  • 2x8 treated sill plate
  • 2x8 treated studs
  • Double 2x top plate
  • 1x treated screed board
  • 6 mil poly film
  • Sealants & construction adhesive
  • Treated plywood strips
  • Hand drive nails
Floor System:
  • 2x treated sill plate
  • 1-1/8" Rim board
  • Trusses or joist
  • Floor beams (if required)
  • Hangers (if required)
  • Hand drive or paslode nails
  • Sealants & caulk, construction adhesive
  • ¾" T&G Subfloor (Advantech, plywood, OSB)
  • 2x6 Strong back bracing
Roof Truss System:
  • Roof trusses with 12" energy heel
  • Roof sheathing (OSB or CDX)
  • Truss bracing
  • Hangers & Ties
  • Hand drive or paslode nails
  • Plywood clips and spacers
  • SPF#2 2x Fascia Board
  • Porch headers and columns

Tools and Equipment
Builders will utilize the same tools that are used to build stick framed structures and other conventionally framed buildings. In addition, some additional SIP specific tools will be necessary. Panels are large and heavy so special lifting equipment is recommended.

General tools:
    Foam Saw
  • Hammer
  • Tape Measure
  • 4' Level
  • Hand Saw
  • Caulking Gun/QT
  • Square
  • Electric drill
  • Sledge hammer
  • 1" Wood Bit
  • Circular saw
  • Reciprocating saw
  • Pry bars
  • Ladders
  • String line
  • Chalk line
  • Come-a-long

SIP specific:
    Foam Scoop
  • Foam Scoop
  • Chain saw & guide
  • Foam Gun
  • Hot wire assembly (optional)

  • Fork lift or crane
  • Fork extensions
  • Lifting plates
  • Ratchet straps

Structural loading
The base building is designed for the necessary top chord live load, 10 psf dead load on the top chord, and 10 psf dead load on the bottom chord. In the case of SIP roof panels the panel is designed for the necessary live load in addition to 15 psf of total dead load. The live load is calculated by the county or elevation in which the building ships to and the building use and conditions. EPS can engineer a building above and beyond the local loadings upon request. The structure is assumed to be located in an area defined as Exposure "C" and have an importance factor of 1.0. Exposure "C" is defined as an open, unobstructed area. The wind load is designed for an IBC 2006 - 90 mph wind, Exposure "C", 1.0 importance factor. Contact EPS for design requirements which exceed what is stated here. Floor systems will be designed with a standard loading of 40 psf live load, 10 psf dead load on the top chord, and 5 psf dead load on the bottom chord.

Design Consideration

The following are features of residential structures that may affect the structure. These items need to be discussed with EPS personnel prior to placing the order.
  • Roofing materials. The standard loading assumes standard roof sheathing and asphalt shingles. Roofing materials such as clay tile and slate are much heavier and must be addressed.
  • Floor coverings. Areas with heavy flooring materials such as slate, granite, stone or gypcrete covering must be accounted for.
  • Architectural features such as stone fireplaces, glass block walls, etc. can impose large loads on the floor system and need to be noted.
  • Decks that are attached to the EPS structure need to be noted to ensure that a proper surface is provided for attachment.
  • Window walls. Walls with a large number of openings may not be feasible to build with SIPs. This will be noted on the preliminary drawings. Materials will be provided to stick build these areas.
  • Window and door rough openings and locations. Due to the nature of SIP panels all window and door rough openings and locations are necessary for the building design. The order WILL NOT be started in engineering until all rough openings and locations are determined. Specifications beyond the standard loading are subject to an increase in price up until the time the preliminary drawings are sent.
For complete and further details and drawings, click here.
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    Click on the images below to view and download the Residential Home literature in Adobe Acrobat® format.

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