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Frequently Asked Questions: Insulating the Steel Strong-Wall® Panel

Increasing attention is being paid to energy efficiency and interior comfort. In light of that trend, how do I insulate the Simpson Strong-Tie Steel Strong-Wall® panel?

The Simpson Strong-Tie Steel Strong-Wall® panel is a critical life-safety component that can be insulated like other wall cavities. U-factors for various types of insulation are listed in Table 1 below. Lower U-factors can be achieved with additional layers of exterior rigid insulation.

Table 1
Insulation Type (Exterior/Interior) U-Factor (BTU/hr-ft2-°F)
Wall Size
SSW15X8 SSW18X8 SSW21X8 SSW24X8 SSW24X10 SSW24X12
  1. A “0” for insulation type indicates no insulation.
  2. The SSW is installed so the anchor bolts are visible from conditioned space.
  3. Values based on 2x6 framed walls for SSW24x12; all others based on 2x4 walls.
  4. Values were calculated using the software program Therm 6.0.
  5. Conductivity for materials used are as follows (BTU-in/hr-ft2-°F)
    • Air - Varies
    • Fiberglass Batts – 0.264
    • Loose Fill Cellulose – 0.277
    • Mineral Fiber Insulation (CW90) – 0.347
    • Spray Applied Open Cell Foam – 0.270
    • Spray Applied Closed Cell Foam – 0.140
0/0 0.408
0/Spray Applied Closed Cell Foam 0.19 0.17 0.16 0.16 0.07
0/Spray Applied Open Cell Foam 0.23 0.22 0.22
0/Fiberglass Batts 0.23 0.25 0.22 0.22 0.22 0.10
0/Mineral Fiber 0.28 0.25 0.25
0/Loose Fill Cellulose 0.25 0.23 0.22
Spray Applied Closed Cell Foam/Spray Applied Closed Cell Foam 0.14 0.13
Spray Applied Closed Cell Foam/Spray Applied Open Cell Foam 0.16
Spray Applied Closed Cell Foam/Fiberglass Batts 0.17 0.16
Spray Applied Open Cell Foam/Spray Applied Open Cell Foam 0.20 0.19
Fiberglass Batts/Fiberglass Batts 0.20 0.18