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Cite this document
In the past decade, exterior insulation and finish systems (EIFS) have been much tested as exterior wall cladding systems in the construction industry. Even with the latest advances in these systems and the resulting positive press, localities and other organizations have been slow to move beyond less than satisfactory experiences with EIFS that occurred decades ago. The EIFS Industry Members Association (EIMA) has identified several jurisdictions where there are statutory and regulatory restrictions and prohibitions on the use of EIFS. EIMA has moved forward on addressing these issues as they arise. As in any situation, there are a number of decision-makers that need to be convinced, on a regular basis, about the advancements in the EIFS industry. Through discussions and individual advocacy cases, EIMA identified three groups—local jurisdictions, planning and architectural firms, and relocation firms—that need to be targeted in both the short and long term. Even with advancements in the EIFS industry, several outdated perceptions still exist. Concerns about durability, moisture control, flame resistance, aesthetics, and other factors remain when it comes those opting not to select EIFS. Being proactive and educating different groups who influence decision makers, or those who might one day become decision makers, is crucial to making sure all parties are aware of the latest advances in the use of EIFS as exterior wall cladding systems. In addition, a reactive approach is still needed because several masonry ordinances remain in existence. This paper shows the wide geographic dispersal of the restrictive ordinances, describes the action EIMA has taken in each case to correct misperceptions, and shows how a few key points can, in most cases, easily change the misperceptions about EIFS as well as the ordinances.
advocacy, exterior insulation and finish systems (EIFS), misconceptions, energy efficiency, architects
EIFS Industry Members Association, Falls Church, VA