Learn more below about the rigorous testing our SIPs system and panels have undergone.
Rigorous testing by three independent companies.
We are fully Building Code of Australia compliant.
Complete SIPs System
We do it all, so you know your build is up to code.
How Smart SIPs approached the development work
We spent 5 years researching and talking to other SIPs manufacturers to see how their systems work. Our keen interest and observation lead us to approach the development of our SIPs system from the opposite angle of most SIPs developers.
What started off as us looking to build our own home resulted in seeing a gap in the market. Mums and dads were struggling to find the way forward to build a totally passive designed home, or in other words a home that requires very small amounts of heating or cooling depending on the climate zone the new home is being built in.
Once we understood how the different systems worked, we then searched out partners from around the world who were already making materials for established SIPs manufacturers. By working in this fashion, we found tried and proven materials to use in our SIPs panels and didn't have to reinvent the wheel or use unproven panel fabrication systems.
Our manufacturing partners
We carefully selected our manufacturing partners and decided on companies that were already established in the SIPs manufacturing industry and exporting to North America, Europe, Asia, and South America.
This partnership between our companies has given Smart SIPs the ability to combine proven SIPs methods with our building and design experience to produce a complete system.
Product development and site testing
At Smart SIPs, we have conducted exhaustive product testing and used a two-pronged approach.
Firstly we selected our SIPs material fabricator and utilised their already proven and tested manufacturing systems.
We then designed our home to be built on our block here in Melbourne, Australia with our own hands. This is the next key difference between Smart SIPs and most other SIPs suppliers.
Most SIPs developers conduct their product testing in a test laboratory and then head to market with a product and system that hasn't been subject to the full dynamic loads of a real live building.
In making our home design, we didn't stop and build a simple single storey home on a level block of land in an everyday street as that would have proven very little. Our home is a three storey home built on a severely sloping block at the top of a hill.
This is a significant difference, as the wind forces the home is subjected to are rated to an N3 wind rating with winds gusting at 50 metres per second or 180km per hour. The average home in Australia is built to a wind rating of N1 or 34m per second or 123km per hour (as defined in the BCA Wind Class — AS 4055).
By building the home with our own hands and taking two years or more to get to lock up stage, we were able to observe the SIPs panels through all weather cycles from 44 degrees celsius to freezing cold days and nights, full wind speed gusts and large amounts of rain pouring down over the panels for over two years. As if this wasn’t bad enough, we even had a 5.4 magnitude earthquake to test us even further. This has given us the ability to watch and study the effects on the panel system and fine tune the installation methods.
Independent laboratory testing
We didn’t stop with our own comprehensive research and development work. We’re committed to quality and reliability, so we conducted fully independent laboratory testing.
Once again we went across the world to search out testing procedures from tried and true SIPs testing authorities. We found this necessary as the Building Code of Australia (BCA) calls for a test requirement for all wall systems, but there isn't a standard testing method –hard to believe, but it’s true.
We chose to use the North American SIPs testing procedure and methodology for our testing authority to follow. We then sought out an independent testing authority to conduct and supervise the test work. This required us to build a specialised testing rig 4m high and 5m long as we couldn't find any testing companies with a test rig this size.
Further independent testing
In addition to having an independent testing authority, we also selected a fully independent certifying engineer to witness the testing and take the test data from the independent testing authority to fully verify the test results against the BCA requirement. Our Independent certifying engineer then applied test data to the loads of our home to ensure our building is designed to withstand the full rigours of the dynamic loads and dead loads we are subjected to on our fully exposed building site.
In addition to the independent certifying engineer, we provided all our test data, methodology, procedure and computations to an independent building surveyor for a further check that all the testing and computations met the BCA requirements and a sign-off that our system complied.
By conducting this exhaustive, time consuming and very expensive testing procedure, we know that three independent companies signed off on our Smarts SIPs system, and we are fully BCA compliant.
Additionally, our engineers are truly independent, being that they have no shareholdings or directorships in our company and are not employees under our direction, thereby ensuring we have fully independent certification.
Utilising the testing certification
Here at Smart SIPs, we’ve learned that there is a lot more to building a SIPs home than just purchasing some SIPs panels, finding your own engineer and reading an installation manual. This is fraught with danger and often ends up with very costly time delays or rectification works.
This is why at Smart SIPs we won't supply anyone with just SIPs Panels. At Smart SIPs, you have to get the complete system.
The Smart SIPs system consists of panel design and placement, panels made to size (not cut from one standard size panel), complete engineering from our independent engineer (the same company that witnessed the testing and signed off on the BCA), Energy Rating report and onsite training with your installation team.
We will supply the approved polyurethane adhesive and specify the nails, screws, nail plates and the complete installation procedure, laying out where the tie downs are placed, glue procedure, nailing sequence and bracing locations.