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FAQ

What is a SmartPanel home?

A SmartPanel home is a home built out of factory assembled structural panels.   We have four main types of SmartPanels:  Structural Insulated Panels (SIPs), Light Steel Panels (LSPs), Steel Concrete Panels (SCPs), and Wood-Stud Panels (WSPs).   The panels are shipped via 40′ High Cube or 40′ Standard shipping containers, and in 20′ shipping containers for some of the heavier materials in our whole-building kits. After delivery, most panels are assembled using a small crane prior to finishing work being done on-site. Find more SmartPanel construction information here.

What is a SmartPanel home kit?

SmartPanels are the structural and insulation systems on a home.  A SmartPanel kit is the entire building package above the foundation.  We like providing the SmartPanel package but we really excel in providing a holistic system house kit system with everything that you need to build the home.  Please see our Common Finish Items Added to SmartPanel Package (PDF).

How long does it take to build a SmartPanel home?

It depends on the specifications of the project and the size of the buildings, among other things.  Typically the construction happens in a matter of weeks, not months or year.

What areas do you service?

We service the entire world outside of the USA.

How much is the total cost of a house using your CEX SmartPanel system?

Our system should be cost-comparable to typical cement block construction, but will be more comfort-able, will cost less to occupy, and can be built in half of the time.  We quote all projects in detail based on plans.  Providing rule of thumb costing on a per square meter or foot basis is not something that we do because we want our clients to depend on our detailed math, not our guesstimate.

Is this system going to cost less than traditional construction?

Usually it will cost less in simple cash terms. But smart developers of building projects assess the cost of construction AND the cost of the capital, the opportunity cost of long-construction cycles, and the risk associated with long-construction projects. Our SmartPanels will outperform traditional construction in all of these considerations.

Will this will be faster?

Yes. Small cottages can be erected in finished in a week or slightly more. Our large-scale construction project cycle time for large villas is approximately 21 days.

What are the materials used for making the panels?

We use our fire-protective CESmartSkins on the both sides of our SIPs and Light Steel Panels.  SIPs have a fire-retardant EPS (Expanded Polystyrene) in the panel core and steel members used to join panels together.  Almost all export projects use galvanized steel framing for any joining points between the panels.

Are the SIPs a regular sandwich-panel or can you offer something more complete for fast installation?

We offer our individual 1.2m wide SIP SmartPanels as a base product, but for larger scale projects we offer our SIPs assembled together into complete Pre-Assembled SIP Wall sections. Rather than having one 1.2m wide panel, we build a series of panels together into a 3-7m panel enclosed in a steel frame, stacked vertically on a truck, and sent to the job-site for easy craning onto the foundation.  The assembled SIP wall section option is available for walls 2.43m (8 ft.) tall or less for containerized projects.  When we offer in-country manufacturing solutions we can build our assembled SIP walls taller than 2.43m (8 ft.).

How wide are your panels for walls, floors, and the roof?

1.2m wide for a basic panel. We can reach up to 7m panels using composite wood panel skins, but our CESmartSkins that are used for most international projects come in 1.2m wide only.  For a more finished solution see the question about our Pre-Assembled SIP Walls above.

Why is the SmartPanel system better than the conventional materials used locally?

3 Primary Reasons – Comfort, Durability, and Speed.

Comfort – Our well insulated buildings will be much more comfortable than a cement building. The GCC climate will always require some cooling in the summer, but you will need less air conditioning tonnage, and the units will need to be operated much less. Once the building is cool, the heat will stay out longer and the cool air will be retained longer.

Durability – SmartPanels are a minimum 1 hour fire rated assembly per UL 055 and ASTM E-84, so fires will be contained and extinguished in one room on the inside and kept outside of the building in the case of an external fire. SmartPanels Skins are inert and do not support mold, fungus, or insects per ASTM G-21. The expected building life with proper maintenance is 150 years.

Speed – We can build one individual villa in one month. Typical villas take 9 months to 18 months to construct. SmartPanels are fast and we agressively complete the supporting project work.

Are your panels Fireproof?

Calling the panels Fireproof is removing all odds of an event happening, so it is more accurate to call our SmartPanels highly resistant to fire. We offer 1, 2, 3, and 4 hour fire-rated assemblies. Most residential housing around the world only require a 30 minute fire rating. We offer a 1 hour fire-rating as standard.

Will your villa be comfortable in the summer heat, or in a cold winter?

Yes. Expanded Polystyrene foam (EPS) is the best insulation that is commonly available in the market. With a
.071 U-value for the walls and .027 U-value for the floor and roofs, we build one of the most energy efficient building system offered.

Will we save money on air conditioning or heating because your villas are better insulated?

Yes, our villas are much more air-tight than villas built even in the last few years. The air can not escape because the panel skins are sealed and the EPS does not transmit air. When conditioned air is mechanically introduced it stays in the house and non-conditioned air is kept out.

How many floors can you build using your SmartPanels?

Building are assembled with our SmartPanels up to 5 stories in areas with low wind and seismic conditions that have good quality soil. Buyers from areas like this do not typically find us. We recommend 3 stories as a maximum without incorporating a larger and more impressive concrete or steel super-structure around the SmartPanels.

Can you use your system for different building types than villas, like commercial , industrial, etc.?

With our one to three hour fire-rated assemblies tested and in-place for construction we can build in any part of a commercial, residential, or institutional building.

Is it possible to expand the house or alter the existing layout?

You can easily make changes to the design at any time. Our structures allow for modification much more easily than cement block construction. We recommend that you consult an engineer on what you want to modify and the best way to make the change. If you want to build a new villa we can build almost any design.

Can CEX provide a full set of Architectural and Engineered drawings for our project?

Yes, we provide complete package of plans for your project. You just need the vision and the financial resources to make the project happen.

How do your panels stand up to high-humidity, heat, corrosion, and insects?

We carefully selected a high-corrosion resistant galvanized steel structure, the most durable Fire-Insect-Moisture resistant skin on the market for our SmartPanels, and we use fire-retardant and insect treated polystyrene foam insulation for our panel cores to ensure that SmartPanels are are light, strong, long-lasting.


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