Holmes Case Study
Building a Case
When a devastating flood washed out Tom Holmes’ Wisconsin timber framing business in 2008, he decided to showcase green building techniques as he rebuilt. He used spray foam in the walls of his shop and production area, and Thermocore structural insulated wall and roof panels in the office area.
“That spray foam contractor lobbied us for years to use his product,” Tom said. “In reality, it just doesn’t compare to the Thermocore Structural Insulated Panels.”
In January 2010, Tom, president of Glenville Timberwrights, asked his HVAC contractor to test his building with a heat gun. The temperature outside hit zero degrees that day. In the shop area, the walls registered in the 50-degree range. But in the office area covered with Thermocore Structural Insulated Panels, the walls, windows, and floor all registered in the 70-degree range.
Spray Foam Thermocore SIPs
“It was very consistent from room to room, floor to ceiling,” Tom said. “Our HVAC contractor said he’d never experienced anything like that in 30 years of business. The way these insulated panels wrap up the building with seamless construction is far superior to any other product that uses studs to interrupt the insulation.”
Key to Competitiveness
Now Tom chooses Thermocore Structural Insulated Panels for all his home construction projects. “We’d been with EPS panels for 20 years, but we realized that Thermocore SIPs with polyurethane offer a thinner panel with more R-value.”
Thermocore SIPs also help Tom stay profitable. “When we used thicker panels, we added $1,500 per window package for the extension jambs,” he said. “With Thermocore’s four-inch thick panels and just a half-inch of drywall, we order normal window sizes without jamb extensions. That saves a lot of money on our window packages and helps us stay competitive with conventional construction.”
Tom likes the wire chases and the outlet boxes molded right into Thermocore’s SIPs, but most of all he enjoys the consistency. “We had issues with quality control from our previous panel supplier, but we found that Thermocore’s quality is just excellent!” he raved.
Tom also appreciated Thermocore’s support in difficult times. “Pat Egan (president of Thermocore) really stepped to the plate and helped us through the whole rebuilding process,” Tom said. “He turned out to be a great business partner.”
For Tom’s team, Thermocore’s service saves time and trouble. “Previously, our designer had to design all the panels for the house; now we just send Thermocore our plans and they design the entire SIPs package. It’s really pretty seamless. We haven’t needed lengthy conversations. It’s not even necessary to involve our designer, which frees her up to do the architectural elements that are more important to us.”