“The SURE STEP protected floor deck is considerably more robust than standard OSB in the same weather conditions, allowing a longer period between installation and making the building weathertight.” Steve Ward, Operations Manager, VerdeGO Timber Frames Ltd.
In the leafy green village of Sarisbury Green in Hampshire, a new residential development is being built by local developer Alpine Homes Limited, using a closed timber-frame panel system developed by low carbon structures manufacturer VerdeGO Timber Frames Ltd, and part of the build features none other than SMARTPLY SURE STEP.
Located between Fareham and Southampton, the timber frame installation work began on the three/four storey block of residential apartments in mid-February 2023. The structural frame including the roof was completed around the end of May 2023. SMARTPLY SURE STEP was specified for the flooring across all three floors.
Making the smart choice
For this project, it was essential to find a robust flooring panel that could withstand exposure to all weather conditions. This is why SMARTPLY SURE STEP was chosen.
“SURE STEP was suggested due to an issue on a previous Alpine Homes development where standard 18mm OSB/3 panels had been used for the structural floor deck,” said Steve Ward, Operations Manager, VerdeGO Timber Frames Ltd. “After a prolonged (& unforeseen) period of exposure to the elements, a large area of the standard panels had to be cut out and replaced due to irreparable damage from exposure to weathering.
“To prevent that from happening on this project, Alpine Homes Ltd wanted us to provide additional protection from moisture penetration into the surface during the install as there is a complex steel portal frame and cut roof, which we knew would take some time to complete following the install of the second-floor deck. SURE STEP forms a sub-deck over which an acoustic ‘floating-floor’ is being laid.”
Stepping up to the challenge with SURE STEP
SMARTPLY SURE STEP is the latest addition to the SMARTPLY OSB range. It is an airtight, tongue and groove OSB/3 panel with a high-performance, durable coating. Using SURE STEP as an air tight layer for flooring or decking can contribute to sustainable building practices as well as reduce the energy consumption for heating, whilst the unique coating brings improved durability during the construction phase and slip resistance to the panel in all site conditions.
“SURE STEP protected floor deck is considerably more robust than standard OSB in the same weather conditions, allowing a longer period between installation and making the building weathertight.”
Manufactured in accordance with EN 300, SMARTPLY SURE STEP is a load bearing panel that is ideal for use as flooring or roof decking where improved durability, temporary protection, reduced edge swelling or reduced surface degradation are required on projects. SMARTPLY SURE STEP panels are available in size 2397mm x 1200mm and come in a choice of two thicknesses: 18mm and 22mm.*other sizes available upon request
Steve concluded: “We had previously made a comparison using a 22mm protected chipboard product and found that the material cost savings for SURE STEP were around 12.5%. Whilst there was no accountable saving on labour due to our installers working to a price, we have estimated a time-saving of around 20% due to the larger board sizes.”
Discover more about SMARTPLY SURE STEP.
About The VerdeGO Group
VerdGO Timber Frames Ltd is part of The VerdeGO Group. The VerdeGO Group produce low carbon, low impact buildings using the most sustainable materials and minimising the effect on the environment by using advanced renewable energy and management systems. Find out more about The VerdeGO Group: https://www.verdegogroup.co.uk/