ICF Homes in Austin are the Solution to Natural Disasters

Austin homes built with the Bau­tex Wall Sys­tem insu­lat­ing con­crete blocks (ICB) can pro­tect a fam­i­ly and house from the ever-present threat of flood­ing and wild­fires in Cen­tral Texas. ICF homes made from Bau­tex Blocks will main­tain their integri­ty before and after a severe flood or fire event. The Auto Haus in Austin, built with the Bau­tex Wall Sys­tem, show­cas­es how ICF homes can pro­tect a fam­i­ly and their trea­sured belong­ings from these types of threats.

ICF Homes in Austin are Needed to Protect Against Flooding and Wildfires

New home con­struc­tion in Austin (locat­ed in Travis Coun­ty, Texas) must take into account the occu­pants safe­ty and the struc­ture’s integri­ty dur­ing nat­ur­al and man-made haz­ards. Impor­tant­ly, the City of Austin Office of Home­land Secu­ri­ty and Emer­gency Man­age­ment (HSEM), deter­mined the top two threats to Austin are flood­ing and wild­fires. The assess­ment was made based on poten­tial dam­age in terms of lives lost, dol­lar loss­es, and oth­er com­mu­ni­ty fac­tors. To best pro­tect them­selves from this threat, fam­i­lies should look to new ICF homes in Austin for the best flood and nat­ur­al dis­as­ter pro­tec­tion.

Flooding - the Number One Natural Disaster Threat to Austin

Flood­ing is the most dan­ger­ous haz­ard in the Austin area and is a threat across the entire city year-round. Sad­ly, in Octo­ber 2018, flood­ing dev­as­tat­ed parts of Travis Coun­ty. As of late Octo­ber, the coun­ty iden­ti­fied around 400 struc­tures impact­ed by the floods.

Flood-resis­tant con­struc­tion is vital in Austin where ten per­cent of the land is locat­ed in the 100-year flood­plain and in dan­ger of flash flood­ing. The 100-year flood­plain is areas where there is a one per­cent chance of flood­ing in a giv­en year. Impor­tant­ly, projects pro­posed in the 25-year and 100-year flood­plains of Austin have the poten­tial of putting peo­ple and prop­er­ty at risk of flood­ing. For these projects, both the City of Austin and Nation­al Flood Insur­ance Pro­gram reg­u­la­tions apply.

Changes to Austin’s Floodplain Map Add more Properties to 100-year Floodplain

Accord­ing to a Nation­al Weath­er Ser­vice rain­fall Atlas 14 study, in the future, Cen­tral Texas is like­ly to expe­ri­ence more extreme rain­storms than in the past. Big­gers storms mean more rain, and pos­si­bly wider, more expan­sive flood­ing. In response, Austin re-draft­ed its flood­plain maps to reflect the like­li­hood of more severe flood­ing. These changes added about 3,200 prop­er­ties to the 100-year flood­plain. Present­ly, the total num­ber of Austin prop­er­ties in the 100-year flood­plain is 7,200.

Best Practice for Flood-Resistant Walls for Austin Homes

The Bau­tex Wall Sys­tem, com­pos­ite insu­lat­ing con­crete blocks (ICB), is a superb choice for a flood-resis­tant wall for an Austin home. The Bau­tex Wall Sys­tem is mois­ture resis­tant, durable, and mold resis­tant.

The Bau­tex Wall Sys­tem includes the Bau­tex Blocks and the Bau­tex AMB 20 Air and Mois­ture Bar­ri­er. The Bau­tex Blocks are a mois­ture resis­tant com­pos­ite prod­uct of EPS foam beads and cement. Plac­ing the Bau­tex AMB 20 Air and Mois­ture Bar­ri­er over the Bau­tex Blocks keeps water from enter­ing the wall sys­tem. Also, Bau­tex Blocks are inor­gan­ic; there­fore, not a food source for mold.

Impor­tant­ly, the Bau­tex Block rein­forced con­crete con­struc­tion does not degrade when wet and main­tains its shape and dura­bil­i­ty dur­ing and after a flood. The Bau­tex Wall Sys­tem has all the vital ele­ments of a flood-resis­tant wall for an Austin home: the strength and dura­bil­i­ty to with­stand water intru­sion before and after a flood, and resis­tance to water and mold. Bau­tex Wall Sys­tem is also easy to clean after a flood.

Increasing Threat of Wildfires Also Calls for ICF Homes in Austin

Wild­fires are a sig­nif­i­cant threat to Austin due to its high tem­per­a­tures, severe drought, and low humid­i­ty con­di­tions. Of con­cern, accord­ing to the For­est Ser­vice, cli­mate change has increased the wild­fire sea­son by an aver­age of 78 days annu­al­ly since 1970.

Austin Temperatures on the Rise

In 2018, Austin had 51 days when temper­a­tures hit 100 degrees or high­er, mak­ing 2018 Austin’s third-warmest on record. Notably, in Austin, of the top 10 years with the most 100-degree days, eight were in the past 18 years. Fur­ther­more, a study by the ATMOS Research & Con­sult­ing reports that by 2040, the sum­mer aver­age high tem­per­a­tures will increase from 93.8 to 96.9 and the days with tem­per­a­tures above 100 will increase from 11.7 to 31.4.

Increasing Drought Conditions in Austin

Accord­ing to the States at Risk, Texas cur­rent­ly faces the worst threat from wide­spread sum­mer drought among the low­er 48 states. By 2050, Texas is pro­ject­ed to see an increase in drought sever­i­ty of about 75 per­cent. In addi­tion, a study by the ATMOS Research & Con­sult­ing reports the annu­al pre­cip­i­ta­tion (inch­es) will decrease from 33.7 to 31.8.

ICF Homes in Austin Are Built to be Fire-Resistant

Due to an increase in wild­fires and longer wild­fire sea­sons, build­ing fire-resis­tant homes in Austin is a pri­or­i­ty for today’s home­own­ers and builders. Sev­er­al vital com­po­nents for build­ing a fire­proof home include pas­sive fire pro­tec­tion shields, and fire­proof exte­ri­or, roofs, win­dow, door, and walls. An ide­al prod­uct for con­struc­tion fire-resis­tant walls is the Bau­tex Wall Sys­tem.

A cru­cial com­po­nent of pas­sive fire pro­tec­tion of a fire-resis­tant Austin home is the wall assem­blies. An excel­lent choice for pas­sive fire­wall pro­tec­tion is the Bau­tex Wall Sys­tem. The Bau­tex™ Wall Sys­tem is a light­weight com­pos­ite block that meets and sur­pass­es indus­try’s stan­dard for fire-resis­tance. The Blocks have an ASTM E119 fire rat­ing of four hours, and an ASTM E84 report­ed val­ues for flame speed of zero and smoke devel­op­ment of twen­ty. Because the Bau­tex Wall Sys­tem meets the E84 and NFPA 286 test­ing require­ments, they meet all of the require­ments of the NFPA 101 life safe­ty code. A best prac­tice for build­ing a fire-resis­tant Austin home includes a fire-resis­tant wall assem­bly like the Bau­tex Wall Sys­tem.

The Auto Haus - Bautex Wall System Protects the Homeowners and their Valuable Belongings

The Auto Haus, in Austin, Texas, built with the Bau­tex Wall Sys­tem, pro­tects this Austin home from the threat of fire. The Bau­tex Wall Sys­tem also cre­ates a mois­ture- and wind-resis­tant home that is and ener­gy-effi­cient home with tem­per­a­ture and humid­i­ty con­trols. The home also need­ed a high lev­el of secu­ri­ty. These fea­tures were vital to the Auto Haus home­own­er who want­ed to con­struct a house that inte­grat­ed a 15-car garage to store their valu­able auto col­lec­tion adja­cent to their liv­ing space.