Research Project Information

Research Project Summary Information

Use of Duraboard as Mudsills in Building Construction:Use of Duraboard as Mudsills in Buildings(ST6473-1)

Tire Conversion Technologies, Inc.


Tire Conversion Technologies, Inc. (TCT) has established a manufacturing facility to produce specialized construction materials from scrap automobile tires. TCT's product is made with the "tread belt" portion of the tire. After the sidewalls are removed, the tread belt is cut so that it is a long strip. Any remaining tread is removed, leaving a uniform thickness of rubber with steel belts through the center. This strip is flattened using a heat and pressure process. The tread belts are then laminated together using gum rubber to form a board of the thickness or width required. Because this material is decay-resistant, TCT has been focusing on products that would be conventionally made with pressure treated lumber, such as pilings and retaining walls. TCT has recently identified that this material could be used as the sill plate (or mudsill) between the foundation and floor connection of a residential home.

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Project Description

The Contractor will: research local and national building codes to assess whether its product would be acceptable, or would require variances, assess the energy impacts of using Duraboards in building construction, perform testing to evaluate the feasibility of using its product as mudsills, and conduct a prototype demonstration of the product in a mudsill application.


A beneficial use was developed for the 16 million scrap tires that are generated in New York State each year.

Project Results

A review of building codes found no mudsill requirement that would prevent them being made with recycled tires. The energy benefits for using Duraboard in foundations were found to be negligible, and possibly negative, compared to wood sill plates when considering R-value and air sealing factors. A residential garage was constructed with Duraboards as a demonstration effort. TCT believes the product would be suitable in locations with termite, earthquake, and hurricane concerns. Still, to capture the hypothesized earthquake and hurricane benefits would require a substantial product design change.


Tire Conversion Technologies, Inc.
1301 Hillside Ave
Schenectady, NY 12309

Principle Investigator

Chanan Shapiro

Universities Involved


Project Type:

Product Development

Technologies Types:

Building Systems

NYSERDA Contact Information

Robert Carver


R&D - Buildings Research

Contract Details

Start Date: 1/11/2010
Project Status: Active
Contract Number: ST6473-1

Last Updated: 3/6/2012 1