Frequently Asked Questions

Q. “What is Faswall Made of?”

A.  Faswall is made in a patented process, combining 85% mineralized wood chips from recycled wood and 15% Portland cement /slag cement binder; that’s all.  It's all natural.

Q. “How durable is Faswall?”

A.  Faswall® buildings can have useful lives measured in centuries, not decades. After World War II amidst the rubble and destruction a way was discovered to take the huge volumes of wood waste, grind it into chips, mineralize the chips to neutralize the natural sugars that cause decay, and bond them to cement to form a building block.

This is the genesis of the Faswall® ICF Wall Form. Since then, tens of thousands of homes and commercial buildings have been built in Europe and Asia and North America with this remarkable composite material. This remains one of the preferred methods of building in Europe and has been available in North America for 35 years. Shelter- Works is committed to continual improvement to keep Faswall® truly one of the most sustainable building materials on the market.

Q. "How do I Build with Faswall?"

A. Our successful Faswall builders follow this process, which we've developed over 3 decades of helping folks build with Faswall.

1. Start with our Get Started Download package.
2. Schedule a Design Review with your assigned rep (after you "Get Started")
3. Request a Detailed Cost Estimate (based on your design) and
4. you MUST get and follow our Technical Manual and Installation Instructions.  You will get these after your design review, or by using our Contact us form.  

Be sure to specify that you need the "Manual and Installation Instructions".  We will contact you  to get further information

Q. “My builder is not familiar with Faswall® and wants to build a stick-framed home for me.”

A. Our staff will work with your builder and designer to provide labor estimates. Because Faswall is so easy to build with, many builders will quickly make the switch. We'll also minimize design complications, so you can significantly reduce the cost of building with Faswall® concrete form material. ShelterWorks staff members frequently arrange for site visits to other Faswall® building projects to help builders and designers gain worthwhile exposure to the building process. There are also occasional workshops at project sites for homeowners, builders, and design professionals.

In addition, ShelterWorks has a group of installers/builders willing to travel to sites to provide one to three days of training to crews for a reasonable fee. Most builders are open to building with Faswall® ICF’s once they understand they are building a better quality home or commercial building, and can gain confidence in the installation process. Stick framing will always be an option for homeowners but cannot capture the advantages of the thermal mass.

Q. “I cannot find a designer who knows your product."

We can link you to many professional designers who know and have found it very rewarding to be a part of a design/build team using Faswall® concrete form material. Or, if you have a designer or architect who is interested in learning more about Faswall® ICF’s, our staff is dedicated to providing a complete set of resources and the personal time to understand the scope of the project to better serve your design/build team.

Q. “Has Faswall® been approved by my local building department?

Faswall® meets or exceeds building and energy codes in all states. If your local building department is not familiar with Faswall® ICF’s 25-year history in North America, we can provide the necessary professional listings and testing data to assist in gaining required approvals. Our staff has many years of experience in providing guidance and direction regarding engineering and structural solutions.  Please have them contact us.

Q. “Why should I go with Faswall® block as opposed to a foam ICF product that is less costly?"

  • Material Cost does not Equal Building Cost
    With the need for far less bracing during installation and less concrete infill than most of the foam ICF’s, Faswall’s installed cost is competitive with most foam ICF’s on the market. Furthermore, the ease of finishing Fallwall with Stucco and Plaster can be substantial savings over traditional ICF. Plus Faswall offers superior performance.
  • Energy Efficiency = Lower Utility Costs
    Better performance of the thermal mass, since the insulation is on the outside of the concrete rather than encasing the thermal mass between sheets of insulation. This leads to lower utility costs.
  • "Breathable" = Healthier and More Comfortable
    Unlike foam ICF’s Faswall® is vapor permeable, which eliminates moisture and mold for your long-term health and decreased maintenance.
  • Environmentally Friendly  Faswall is made with 100% Recycled and Organic materials, reducing carbon and environmental footprint.

You’d be surprised at the various types of homes and commercial buildings that can be built with Faswall. Check out some of the recent projects..
Photo Gallery

I Want To Get Started


Request Your Free Download "Get Started" Package:
includes: Design ideas, Product Data Sheet, Block Pricing, Technical and Installation Info, Engineering Details
Home Owner
Building Dept./Government

Properties Faswall Traditional
Foam ICF
High Thermal Mass
Vapor Permeable for Mold-Free Living
High Recycled Content Depends
Excellent Insulative Qualities
200-Year Durability Depends
Non- Toxic
4-Hour Fire Rating
Labor- Intensive Rating (1-5) 2 2.5 1
Do-It- Yourself Rating (1-5) 1 3 3

These Folks Can Help You Build with Faswall®


High Thermal Mass Home in SW Washington

List of Engineers

(with multi-state and provincial licensing)




Designers - Architects

Please Check our Builder List for Some Design/Build Options

Call us for help in finding a Designer for your building.



List of Builders

All of the Builders listed here have extensive experience with Faswall.

Six Reasons to Build with Faswall Wall Forms



Faswall® is a dream come true for do-it-yourself builders. Faswall® blocks are dry stacked — no mortar needed!



The reinforced concrete walls created by Faswall® will last for centuries. Build your legacy home with Faswall®.


Safety & Security

Faswall® offers superior resistance to fire, deadly wind, and earthquakes so you can sleep safe and sound in your Faswall® home.



Made with recycled, organic building materials (no chemicals or toxins). Faswall® is the material of choice for green-conscious builders.



The superior insulation properties of Faswall® mean significantly reduced heating and cooling costs. Maintenance costs are also reduced.


Health & Comfort

Faswall® inhibits mold growth, is non-toxic, and is sound-proof. Creates an exceptionally healthy & comfortable indoor environment.