We started building our own home about 3 weeks ago, this week we worked on the ICF foundation. After the foundation footing concrete was poured last week, it was left to dry for a day or two before removing the forms. This past week the guys got everything ready to start the foundation walls – this included installing the weeping tile all around the footings, and then covering the weeping tile with more gravel.
Why an ICF foundation?
We decided to do Fox Blocks insulated concrete forms (ICF) for the foundation. ICF foundations are more energy efficient than regular poured concrete foundations. It does cost a little more, but this is one part of the house that we decided to spend a little extra money. We want the basement to be dry and warm, and an ICF foundation is the way to achieve this.
Installing the forms
Here is a picture of the progress after the first day of installing the Fox Block. The blocks themselves are fairly easy to install, they just stack right on top of each other. Some blocks need to be cut, and this can end up taking a bit more time (especially when I make a mistake and end up cutting the same block twice!) The rebar then has to be placed in each row. All the blocks are clipped together to increase the strength.
After three days of installing the ICF foundation it is pretty much finished. This is the view from the front of the house…
…and the view from the back.
Next week will be finishing what’s left of the forms, bracing it, then pouring the concrete.