Frequently Asked Questions about SIP Construction
Smart Rooms has brought a revolutionary way of constructing building extensions to Wiltshire and Somerset, so it is to be expected that we are always faced with a barrage of curious questions from clients and prospective clients about the SIP building method.
We’ve put together this list of questions we are most commonly asked, together with our answers, in the hope you’ll find it handy if you’re considering a home extension in Bath (BA1 &BA2), Bradford-on-Avon (BA15), Trowbridge (BA14) or the surrounding area.
If we missed out anything important, please don’t hesitate to get in touch and ask! We’ll be happy to help.
SIP stands for Structurally Insulated Panels. These prefabricated, insulated panels are ideal for constructing extensions to any building, or even free-standing structures in the grounds, providing extra living or work space. The walls of SIP structures can be clad with a variety of finishes and roofed with any material, including glass, to blend in with the existing building. Interior and exterior can be decorated in any style.
The way SIPs are made and the airtight way they are fitted together to create a room means heating the interior uses far less energy than a conventional build, so the U-value is lower, and your heating bill is lower too. The other thing people like is the speed with which a SIP extension can be built – the customised panels are made off-site and assembled quickly on your property with the minimum of disruption.
The SIP construction method hasn’t been in use for very long, so its hard to say. There are some prototype SIPs builds in the United States that are now still going strong at 90 years old. If correctly installed and kept wind and watertight the SIPs panels should last for the lifespan of the building.
The joy of SIP construction is that it is extremely versatile. They can be pre-ordered to enclose any size or shape of floor plan, even with pre-made window and door reveals. SIPs roof panels can house glass lanterns or skylights, and don’t need trusses so you can have a vaulted ceiling if you wish. The panels can be clad externally with brick, render, wood, metal or any other outer skin you fancy, and roofed with slate, tile or even a living green roof. Inside the panels are finished with plasterboard and a skim coating, and can be decorated any way you desire.
Yes, SIP extensions are eco-friendly. They actually contribute positively to helping to lower CO2 levels because their insulating foam core acts to store carbon, which remains trapped within for the panel’s lifespan. The OSB timber outer layers are sustainably sourced. The whole panel is fully recyclable.
No. The SIPs we use at Smart Rooms for our building projects do not contain any VOCs (volatile organic compounds) or harmful chemicals. The components of SIPs are oriented strand board (OSB), foam and adhesive, all meeting the highest standards for indoor air quality. They also meet all appropriate fire safety standards.
The cost of SIP extensions varies depending on the size and complexity of the extension. Smart Rooms offers competitive pricing for its SIP extension services, and our team can work with you to provide a customised quote based on your specific needs.