Insulated Concrete Forms… Who Knew?

The construction industry has evolved over time based on consumers desires and price constraints. Tucson has not been immune to these shifts and in recent years we have seen a strong interest to have green building products and efficiencies incorporated into our clients custom homes. This desire for a green and efficient home has led many to question the conventional construction methods that have been used for decades if not centuries or longer. One product that was developed in the 60s and 70s is making a resurgence now. Insulated concrete forms or ICFs are a type of building material that is typically used for exterior walls. ICF blocks are stacked to create a continuous form that is filled with concrete to create a strong and well insulated exterior wall for the home. In our industry these blocks are referred to as Grey Blocks and White Blocks. In my opinion both types of block have there benefits and drawbacks. Below is a description of the pros and cons of each along with some examples: Grey Block: Grey blocks are great because they are typically made from post consumer material. This keeps non-biodegradable Styrofoam out of the landfills which is always a plus. Grey blocks are also very easy to shape and mold giving a flexibility in design that is harder to achieve when using a white block.  The cons that we have found using grey block is that they don’t have precise dimensions. They can very by 1/4 inch in some cases making it difficult to stack and align. Another issue with grey block is it does not have any furring strips to attach...

Get $2,000 To Help Save A Resource… Why Not?

What a waste! You see the storm clouds rolling in for another thunderous monsoon downpour and you are excited that your plants are going to get some much needed water. To your disappointment though, as quick as the rains came, the water has washed away. From the sky, to your roof, to the ground, and off to the washes. There must be something we can do! The City of Tucson is hosting a water harvesting workshop for City of Tucson water customers. This workshop teaches you about the principals of water harvesting and ways you can implement a water harvesting program on your property. Better yet, It qualifies and teaches you about the great incentive program that offers up to $2,000 back to you when you install a water harvesting system (half the cost of the system for systems up to $4,000). I went to the workshop and learned a lot about the best practices for a long lasting reliable system. If you are interested in this program give us a call (520) 975-4504 or (520) 297-9643  and we can talk to you about it to see if it’s right for you. We can also design and install these systems for you to make sure you get the biggest bang for your buck! Be sure to like and share this blog so your friends can take advantage of this excellent opportunity! Please like &...

A Wealth of Ideazz: Houzz.com

Hello everyone! I wanted to let you all know about a great new website out there that helps prospective clients find design ideas for future projects. The website is houzz.com. Hayes Construction, Inc. has a page there that features some of our past jobs. This website helps our clients because they can create an idea book that lets them bring all the designs they like into a central location. We can then access that information and have a better understanding of the style our clients are looking to achieve. I suggest you take a look at the website and start an idea book of your own; even if you don’t have a project in mind yet. This is just another way that Hayes Construction, Inc. is creating a better experience for its customers. If you find this website appealing please like this blog post so others have a chance to check it out. Thanks! Please like &...

Green Living–Chlorine-Free Swimming Pool

Here is just another example of the innovative ‘Green’ techniques that are available from Biotop Living Pool. This pool is chemical free (chlorine being one of the most caustic of chemicals), and even better than salt, or bromide pools. Brilliant Idea, and we would like to offer this to our clients as an option for those who want a swimming hole! It’s beautiful, functional, and it provides you with your own natural spring in your back yard! Let us know if we can give you any other ideas, affordable and easy to help our environment and leave a smaller carbon footprint! Please like &...

Tucson Green Construction – Grey Water Harvesting and Recycling

Water can be classified in three distinct categories; drinking water (white), sewage (black), and “in between” water (grey). This “in between” water is water that comes from the laundry machine, dishwasher and shower/bath drains. This water, although polluted, is not considered to be dangerous for recycling. The use of grey water in irrigation is used most commonly. Below is a list of some of the benefits of recycling grey water for irrigation: Reduced impact on ground water Reduced water bill More lush vegetation Replenished aquifer Less impact on existing infrastructure (sewer/septic) As you can see this type of recycling can directly affect the environment in a positive way. It is important to remember though; harmful cleaning chemicals should not be used if you use this type of system do to their negative effects on vegetation and wildlife. And grey water should not be used for plants intended for human consumption. If this all sounds good to you, your next question should be, “how can I get started”? Well, to retro fit a grey water recycling system to your house you must have fixtures that are located on the perimeter of your house, such as a laundry machine on the porch or a dishwasher on an outside wall. Tapping into these drains would be easy and cost effective. The other option would be to include it on any future construction. When the idea of grey water recycling is brought up early, in the design phase, all grey water lines can be plumbed to accommodate a recycling program. This simple low cost design modification can end up saving you money and...