All Digital Publications
Frequently Asked Questions about SIPs
The 34 most frequently asked questions about Structural Insulated Panels (SIPs).
SIPs True Cost Bidding Tool (BLANK)
The SIPs True Value Bidding Tool helps demonstrate the added value of a SIP project with every lead that your business encounters. It’s an easy way to elaborate on the additional value included in a SIP structure that conveys more than energy performance – it demonstrates the true cost associated with building and the real savings in choosing SIPs.
Do's and Don'ts for Handling and Installing SIPs
Topics: General Principles, Handling and Storage, Assembly, Weather Details and Interior Comfort.
Building with SIPs: NEED TO KNOW
SIP building process overview with key points and checklists for the ten most important things you need to know to build a SIP building.
SIP Basic Connection Details
Updated in 2021 and 2022, the SIP Basic Connection Details provides 27 detailed illustrations of typical SIP connections and joints. Includes roof-to-wall panel connections, foundation connections, eaves detailing and more. These SIP connections in structures were updated in 2021 by a team of SIP-industry collaborators.
Guide Specification 06 12 00 for Structural Insulated Panels (SIPs). Use for typical construction project submissions.
SIPs True Cost / Value Bidding Tool (COMPLETED EXAMPLE)
This completed example of the True Value Bidding Tool helps demonstrate the added value of a SIP project with real specifications. The tool is an easy way to elaborate on the additional value included in a SIP structure that conveys more than energy performance – it demonstrates the true cost associated with building and the real savings in choosing SIPs.
Designing with SIPs: DESIGN CONSIDERATIONS
SIP design process overview with key points and checklists for the ten most important considerations when designing a SIP building.
SIP BUILDER-BP 9 SIP Electrical
SIP manufacturers may provide electrical wiring chases in wall panels. The chases are approximately 1-1/4” in diameter and are located in the foam insulation core of the SIP. Horizontal chases in the wall panels are located at switch and outlet heights, approximately 14” and 48” from the bottom of the panel. Vertical chases are located approximately 4’ on center in the wall panels. Additional chases may be added. Consult the manufacturer that you are working with.
SIP BUILDER-BP 10 SIP Plumbing
Plumbing is recommended to be placed in interior walls to provide for an optimal exterior building envelope.
SIP DESIGN BP-1: High-Performance SIP Building Envelope
A 24-page deeper dive into the building science behind the exceptional performance of SIPs. Learn why SIPs exceed building code thermal requirements, eliminate laborious continuous insulation requirements, reduce HVAC loads via reduced air leakage, and eliminate poor insulation installation concerns.
SIP DESIGN BP-2: HVAC Systems with SIPs
This 11-page document explores the technical reasons high-performance buildings need significantly smaller HVAC systems. SIP buildings are very well-insulated and tighter, which
results in HVAC systems easily being oversized if old rules of thumb are used to size equipment.
SIP DESIGN BP-3: SIP Structural Capabilities
Comprehensive engineering analysis of point loads, long-distance roof spans, and SIP acceptance of building code acceptance.
SIP DESIGN BP-4: SIP Sizes
Understand the reason behind various sized SIP panels in this 6-page resource. This versatility in size offers design professionals a wide range of creative options. Additionally, panels can be manufactured up to 24 feet long without the use of intermediate supports.
SIP DESIGN BP-5: SIP Shop Drawings
This best practice brochure provides a detailed overview of SIP shop drawings. Depending on complexity of design, need for engineering, permitting, and possible revisions, the development of SIP shop drawings is a process that relies on engagement from those reviewing these drawings on behalf of the building owner.
SIP DESIGN-BP 6: SIP Fabrication/Manufacturing
This 8 page document is created specifically for design professionals by the manufacturing members of the Structural Insulated Panel Association (SIPA). It dives deeper and provides more background into each of the summarized topics presented in the Designing with SIPs: DESIGN CONSIDERATIONS overview which highlights important considerations during the design phase of a Structural Insulated Panel (SIP) structure.
SIP DESIGN BP-7: SIP Installation
Explore SIP installation training and online courses in order to properly install and seal a SIP package.
SIP DESIGN BP-8: SIP Roof and Wall Assemblies
Wall and roof connection joints are the weakest link of any building. It is no different when building with SIPs. It is important to understand in which climate zone the project you are designing will be built, to control air and moisture migration at panel joints for long-term durability. This resource provides a deep-dive into the topics covered in SIPA's DESIGN CONSIDERATIONS brochure.
SIP DESIGN BP-9: SIP Electrical
Vertical and horizontal chases are provided in SIP walls assisting with wiring at outlet and switch heights. Wall and roof chases can be added or removed, prior to SIP manufacture. Shop drawings confirm all chase locations to avoid unnecessary cutting of SIPs in the field. Pre-planning for installation and special chase locations is critical. Electrical chases should be sealed after electrical rough-in inspection to maximize airtightness. An experienced SIP installer is your best insurance that the electrical rough-in will go smoothly. Recessed lights are not recommended for installation in SIP roofs. Use of surface mounted LED lighting is recommended.
SIP DESIGN BP-10: Plumbing
Plumbing is recommended to be placed in interior walls to provide for an optimal exterior building envelope. Minimize roof penetrations and consider consolidating all vents away from south facing roof planes for potential solar array.
SIP Solutions for Commercial Construction
Explanation of real world thermal performance of SIPs. Examples of how building with SIPs fit specific commercial construction needs.
SIP Consumer Brochure Science + Engineering
Quick explanation of SIP benefits -- energy efficiency, R-value, conserving resources, health and durability.
Study Guide SIPA BEST Program
Study Guide for the SIPA BEST (Building Education with SIPs Training) online program. 76 pages with illustrations and glossaries covering all 10 chapters, for those who prefer a “textbook.”
Cut Labor Costs by 55% with SIPs
Two data-packed pages with graphs comparing SIPs to traditional stick frame construction.
Product Guide to Structural Insulated Panels
A comprehensive 24-page overview of Structural Insulated Panels (SIPs). This brochure quantifies how SIPs save time and energy and includes design/construction considerations, load tables and connection details.
Retrofit Insulated Panel Installation Guide
Comprehensive, illustrated 40-page manual for installing Retrofit Insulated Panels (RIPs), also known as nailbase
Strategies for Post-Hurricane Mississippi Housing
16-page research study recommending SIPs as a viable option for rebuilding in the wake of hurricane Katrina and providing affordable housing to low-income residents.