Build Phase 1 – Frost Protected Shallow Foundation


The image with the blueskin shows the rigid foam placed vertically 2′ and horizontally 2′. The frost protected shallow  foundation (FPSF) has been widely utilized in Europe for more than 50 years, it is still relatively new to North America.



A major issue in our climate is frost line. Our frost line here in zone 6a, is around 3.5-4’. Shovel by shovel this would take forever and a day! Again after a ton of research over a number of weeks, I came across the frost protected shallow foundation technique (FPSF).

The FPSF is an alternative to a deeper and more expensive foundation in cold regions with the potential for frost heave. The FPSF utilizes rigid foam insulation to raise soil temperatures. This technique allows for foundation depths as low as 16″ for most of North America..

I have not seen nor read of anyone amalgamating the two techniques, but as our building is so small, it gave me the flexibility to try new things.


The Blueskin protects the rigid foam and is a fabulous product as it has tar on the back making it really simple to install. As you can see the Blueskin is placed vertically as well as horizontally. We used the rigid foam to create the form work for the intended foundation. Normally the FPSF is utilized with a slab foundation,  which we are not doing with this structure. The whole structure is an experiment.


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