If you are someone preparing to build a new house in a hurricane prone region,Retail Building Supply in Soweto you may wonder what construction material is the best for a hurricane proof house? When we ask that question we are typically referring to the frame (skeleton) of the home. The decision of what material to use on the frame a home is important, and there are several factors that go into that decision. Those factors include material cost, performance, and ease of construction. For those of us living in a coastal area, the material performance is of particular importance,Materials Needed For Construction but the other factors must be examined as well. This article compares two construction materials to build a house in a hurricane prone area. The majority of people will assume that wood is the only choice for residential construction, but I would encourage you to at least weigh the benefits of a concrete or other solution.
When we speak of wood construction, we are referring primarily of conventional wood construction using dimensional lumber and plywood. The frame is built with studs, rafters and joists. Conventional wood construction is either done on site (stick built) or partially in a shop (prefabricated). Examples of prefabricated wood construction includes wood trusses or modular homes built in the shop and delivered to a job site. The modular home industry is growing, and is even marketing itself to the high end housing markets. Other methods of constructing with wood include heavy timber framing, and structural insulated panels.
The biggest benefit to wood construction is its relative cost. Houses can typically be built less expensively with wood than with other material options. This is the primary reason that wood construction is so prevalent. Wood has been around for years, and has proved itself to be a viable building material to withstand the weather. Like any building material, however, when not constructed or designed properly, wood has come up short in the face of Hurricanes. So, it is possible to build a house to withstand hurricane force winds, but some measures should be taken to ensure that it is designed and built properly. An employer once told me that the most important thing to look for when designing with wood was the connections. Connections are king when it comes to wood, so pay special attention to this area. Most building departments require that some engineering be done to ensure that the connections, and other critical items, be evaluated before a permit is issued for the house.
When it comes to performance, there are many benefits to building a house with concrete. Concrete is strong, resistant to fire, decay, termites, and mold. This material is truly sustainable, and that includes sustaining a hurricane. This of course, assumes that the material is designed and installed properly. Concrete construction can be built using either forms, or by using preformed units (aka masonry or blocks).
The most basic method of installing concrete is to build plywood forms, and then pour the concrete walls and floors, which rest on a concrete foundation. The steel reinforcing is placed within the formwork prior to pouring the concrete. Forming the concrete can be labor intensive, and hence cost prohibitive. Insulated Concrete Forms, or ICF are one solution that have been developed to make concrete a more viable option for residential construction. The forms consist of Styrofoam, which is lighter and easier to erect than the plywood forms. Concrete masonry units (CMU) construction, consists of preformed hollow blocks of concrete that are stacked in place, filled with steel reinforcement and then grouted on-site. CMU is also commonly, and incorrectly, referred to as cinder blocks. This method is a widely accepted method in Florida for hurricane proof construction due to its reasonable cost versus the strength that the material provides.
A slight deviation from CMU is AAC, which stands for Aerated Autoclaved Concrete. AAC is a lightweight aerated concrete that is also preformed in standard size blocks, that can be stacked in place, and then filled with steel reinforcement and grouted on-site. AAC is a building material that is relatively new in the US. AAC is gaining popularity because it is lightweight, energy efficient, and is relatively simple to cut and install. I have seen details from the suppliers showing threaded rod systems used inside the blocks, but I would not recommend this practice. Rebar designed to work with concrete should be used inside of the AAC units, and not threaded rods.
I believe that concrete, whether it be formed-in-place concrete or concrete masonry, has inherit strength benefits that will naturally resist hurricane force winds. In addition a concrete option will bring other benefits such as resistance to mold, fire, and termites, as well as energy efficiency. Any of these concrete options will likely be slightly more expensive than wood when evaluated based on initial cost. That being said, it should be noted that the cost over the life of the Construction Materials Usa, in addition to the up front cost should be considered. For example, a wood home typically costs more to insure than a concrete home. In addition, some states have tax deductions for using energy efficient materials such as AAC. Finally, you must place some value on the higher risk of a wooden home possibly not doing as well in a hurricane as a concrete home.
In making your decision of what material to use to build your hurricane proof home, you will likely compare cost, performance, and other factors. Do not merely assume that what everyone around you is doing will be sufficient for your home. Be aware that there are options to choose from, and it is important to consider which option is the best for your house and your preferences. Finally remember that price is important, but building a house improperly can cost you later.
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This is a very synonymous trade with construction works, especially the construction of buildings. Most of the modern construction has its structural frame fabricated out of concrete. There are two main types of concrete:
· Mass Concrete: This is usually a 'weak' form of concrete. This means that it does not perform any load bearing duties. It is used in ground floor slabs, platforms or simple bases for light works.
· Structural (reinforced) concrete: This is used to carry loads and is therefore a common part of buildings and other structures like retaining walls. It is usually added strength properties by the use of steel (reinforcement). The specification of concrete is usually dependent on the amount of strength it is supposed to carry.
Concrete is made from a mixture of the following main parts;
· Ballast (Course aggregate): This forms the bulk of concrete parts. It is made from crushed stone and the size of the aggregates determines (partly) the strength and workability of concrete.
· Sand (fine aggregate): This is the second largest part of concrete. In concrete, it fills the gaps in between the course aggregates.
· Cement (binder): This binds together the other parts of concrete and hardens in a chemical process to form a strong mass, shaped to the desired form and size.
The three parts form the main type of concrete, which is usually given as ratio as in the following manner; (1:2:4 - One part Cement, Two parts Sand and Four parts Ballast). The three are mixed with clean water in a specified quantity. Cement reacts with water to form its strength.
Other constituents of concrete include;
· Reinforcement: Usually in the form of steel bars, but also in the form of fibrous material. Gives concrete enhanced strength properties.
· Additives: Chemical compounds added in concrete to give it enhanced characteristics like more flowability and water resistance.
Alongside this, concrete also needs moulds, commonly known as formwork, to give it support as well as shape it in the desired form, for example circular shape in columns. The conventional formwork was made of timber and poles, although this is quickly changing to other materials, mainly steel and aluminium.
Concrete works constitute the following works, which are either carried out by hand, by machine or a combination of both.
· Formwork construction: Depending on the material to be used, this can be purely a carpentry affair or a simple steel assembly. It also includes works like leveling and waterproofing. It also involves removal of formwork after a specified period, for example seven days, a process known as striking.
· Mixing: As earlier discussed. It is either done on site or mixed offsite and delivered in premix trucks.
· Steel Fixing: Where reinforced concrete to be set up, steel bars are usually fabricated and laid into the formwork before concrete is put. This involves works like bending, cutting and binding. This process is usually guided by an engineer's drawing. This is mostly a manual affair.
· Placing: This refers to the act of putting concrete into the formwork. It is in most cases done above the ground level and as such involves either hoisting or dropping. Hoisting is either done manually or mechanically using hoists or concrete pumps.
· Compacting: This is done to make sure that concrete forms a compact mass, thus enhancing its strength. In small scale projects, it is done by hand, but in large projects, it is either done using poker vibrators (hand held or otherwise) or by use of additives to achieve self-compacting concrete.
· Curing refers to the task of allowing proper chemical bonding of cement by hydration (watering). It is usually done for a specified period of time, for example thirty days.
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An increasing majority of people have acknowledged the fact that we all can cooperate to help alleviate the stress put on environment, and if we all do a little together, it will have a big impact. One of the easiest things to do is to use sustainable resources in our buildings. It sounds good, but what precisely are sustainable materials? Well, here's a little assistance in understanding this part of the "green revolution."
To understand and recognize what constitutes sustainable building materials, it helps to know the definition of sustainability. Essentially, it means that the use of resources by humans takes place in a manner that conserves the resources for the future. If that sounds a little too obscure, think of it as a system that uses resources that renew themselves. Focusing in a little more, two examples of sustainability would be the use of wood for building. Because forests can regenerate, the wood that is used for building is replenished as more trees grow and mature. A different direction would be the use of steel for construction. Here, the concept is not the regeneration of the supply but the ability to recycle the resource and use it over and over again.
It's easy to recognize sustainable materials and integrate them into your building plans. If you can replenish it, then you can bet that it is sustainable. Aside from wood, great renewable supplies are plant materials such as bamboo and straw. Others illustrations include clay, coconut, seagrass and cork. Nature continually produces wonderful products for our homes that, if used sensibly, we will never run out of.
The other aspect to sustainability is recyclable materials. Many metals are recyclable. You can use these materials for things like floors, walls and countertops. You can also get recycled stone to use as a material as well
Part of achieving sustainability is to watch your energy consumption. When you are considering which materials to purchase for your building project, consider the quantity of energy required to transport such a material. If you truly want something like granite countertops, consider purchasing granite from a manufacturer that is located nearby, rather than from another country. Think about all of the wasted energy that goes into transporting a piece of granite from Malaysia. A local manufacturer will use a reduced amount of energy to get the material delivered.
Making sure that an environmentally friendly property is on target takes more than just using sustainable materials. Employing the ideology of sustainability is only one part of the process. The rest of it includes using the right materials with the right architecture and correct construction techniques to make a complete system. Manage your water consumption, the energy efficiency of the property, and integrate your building site with the rest of the surrounding property. Remember, that your goal is to make a home that takes as little as possible from nature.
Keep in mind that you shouldn't expect to make your home sustainable all at one time. It's just an issue of considering different materials than you might have considered before. When you need new countertops, think about using cork instead of granite. Instead of tile for your floors, think about bamboo. Instead of paint, think about covering your walls with natural fibers, which will actually improve your air quality. In a matter of time you will have created an eco-friendly and sustainable home to call your own.