Structural Insulating Sheathing

Combines insulative and water-resistant barrier benefits with structural properties to offer an affordable method of bridging the thermal short-circuiting of a building’s frame.

Exterior walls must provide multiple functions including weather and air resistance, energy efficiency, and structure. Most commonly, these functions are met with a combination of materials that are typically individually installed.Structural insulating sheathing provides a multi-function exterior wall sheathing product that is applied in a single layer and provides additional continuous insulation, a weather- and air  infiltration-resistant barrier, and structural wall bracing. The product is a marriage of two proven sheathing materials foam sheathing (polyisocyanurate) and structural laminated fibrous board with a thermal resistance of R-3 for -inch thickness.

Structural insulating sheathing provides a structural method of design for braced wall panel construction, and many additional benefits. Using a single product simplifies wall construction and allows labor savings. It can be installed using common construction tools and skills, and time is saved since it eliminates the installation of a separate layer of building wrap or felt paper for the weather-resistant barrier (WRB). Further, it reduces handling and improves worker safety by replacing two installations with one of a lighter panel weight.

Beginning in 2006, the International Residential Code (IRC) will require a WRB over OSB for code compliance when using most of the conventional exterior cladding systems.

A special thanks to my good friend Paul Hasenmeier from First Due Tackle for sending me these pictures of an apartment that was going up in his area to motive me to compile all the information I alreadyhad on Structural Insulating Sheathing and take it from my Green Building Construction Class and put it into a written post where all could read and share. Here is the link to the photos:!/media/set/?set=a.525651460808230.120904.388039061236138&type=1

Additional Information about Structural Insulating Sheathing:

STYROFOAM SIS (U.S. Residential Only) Link:

Other types of Insulating Sheathing:

The only way to know this kind of energy efficient construction is being built in your area is to get off the couch and go walk through these buildings as they are being built!

Stay Safe and share with all your brothers and sisters!

Lt. John Shafer


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John Shafer

An 18 year veteran of  the fire service, and currently a Lieutenant and the Training Officer for the Greencastle Fire Department.  An Indiana regionally recognized instructor on building construction, fireground search and command management, he has traveled throughout the State of Indiana delivering specialized training programs on building construction, fireground search and firefighter safety.
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