As a builder, trying to navigate confusing building codes, stringent energy codes and customer demands, all while creating a resilient, cost-effective structure, can feel like you’re running through a maze. Finding reliable, trustworthy information to help you navigate these challenges can be equally as trying. For decades, APA – The Engineered Wood Association has supported the construction industry as a trusted source of reliable information for building professionals. APA’s resources range from basic construction instructions to highly technical data to help building pros create cost-effective, resilient structures that comply with stringent code requirements. Here are five resources that should be in every builder’s toolbox.

1. Wall Bracing Guidance

While wall bracing is one of the most important structural elements of any house, it can also be one of the most confusing. The International Residential Code (IRC) defines 16 bracing methods and defines minimum widths for wall bracing segments based on the construction material and type of bracing method. There are many APA resources available to help simplify and clarify compliance. Builders can find everything from introductory wall bracing basics to a comprehensive, five-part webinar series detailing the 2018 IRC wall bracing provisions. EXPLORE >

2. How to Build Energy Code-Compliant Wall Assemblies

When new energy codes are introduced, the biggest concern for builders is often the cost impact of any changes. APA offers resources to support builders with energy-code-compliant construction while keeping costs in check. From guidance on how to use the performance path tradeoff-based methods to meet residential energy codes while reducing construction costs, to an illustrated design guide offering detailed information on constructing walls with R20 or better values, builders can find step-by-step support. GO >

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10 Benefits of Wood Structural Panel Wall Sheathing

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3. Avoiding Common Framing Errors

After decades of site inspections, APA field staff have identified the most common framing and sheathing challenges and errors that builders face in wood-frame construction. This handy resource offers explanations, simple solutions and how to avoid these errors in the future. VIEW >

4. Free Consultations with Engineered Wood Specialists

APA’s Engineered Wood Specialists are a diverse team of engineers, architects and construction experts located throughout North America. These experts are available to assist building professionals with questions regarding code compliance, design and installation of engineered wood products (EWPs) or other questions related to wood-frame construction with EWPs. Their services are paid for by the engineered wood industry, so builders can receive consultations at no cost. LEARN MORE >

Have a quick question? Try the APA Help Desk. Staffed by knowledgeable specialists, APA’s Product Support Help Desk is a free service available to assist builders with a diverse range of inquires related to engineered wood products, systems and construction. GO >

5. Simple Solutions for Code-Compliant Wall Construction

Building codes require that walls resist wind pressures and wall-racking forces and provide weather protection. Fully sheathed wood walls solve a majority of challenges builders face in the construction process by delivering multiple advantages in code and safety, design and production and energy efficiency and green building. Here, builders can find information and guidance on several commonly used wall systems and details on how wood structural panels can easily be used to meet fundamental requirements in wall applications. GET >