8 Construction and Building Materials for Residential Projects

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Having a rood over one’s head has been a top priority for human beings since our ancient ancestors set up their first campsites over 2 million years ago.  

Residential construction’s come a long way since those first mammoth skin constructions, with a wide range of materials available to the modern-day home builder. 

Check out these top construction and building materials for your next project. 

1. Wood as a Construction Material

Wood is the construction material of choice in many areas around the world. It’s most commonly used in the form of lumber and timber like boards and planks. Wood’s suitable for a wide range of construction projects and suitable for use in most climates.

This material’s flexible under loads and extremely strong when it’s compressed vertically. Different tree species produce wood of varying quality.

Pine, cedar, cherry, and redwood suit most building projects since they’re softwoods and easy to work with. 

The production methods used to bring lumber and timber to market can also affect how good the end product is for your construction project. It’s important to use treated, cured timber for residential building projects. 

One of the most recognizable types of wood construction is log cabins built from logs. 

The drawbacks of using wood are that it’s vulnerable to termites, fire, water damage, and decay. It’s also not as sustainable as other recycled steel or composite lumber. 

2. Blocks and Bricks

Blocks and bricks consist of kiln-fired shale or clay. They’re fire- and rot-proof and exceptionally sturdy materials for use in home construction.

It’s also easy and quick to build with blocks and bricks so you’ll save on labor costs and time when you choose this building material. Bricks and blocks are usually made of renewable materials, so they’re a comparatively eco-friendly choice.

Unfortunately, these materials are heavy, so you’ll need deep foundations to hold your building up. If you live in an area that’s prone to earthquakes, bricks aren’t a good option. Porous bricks are oftern vulnerable to mold in damp conditions. 

Always choose the best quality bricks and blocks for construction and ensure you hire skilled bricklayers to help with your construction.  

3. Steel For Strength

Steel’s used for a number of things during residential construction. It’s an important element for framing, reinforcements, roofing, cladding, and insulating panels. You’ll also find steel used in interior aspects of residential buildings like ducting, rails, and shelving.

Recycled steel’s a top choice if you’re concerned about environmental sustainability since it helps reduce the carbon emissions from manufacturing steel by 75%.

Since newly forged steel is recyclable too, it’s still a good choice if you can’t get your hands on recycled steel.

Steel lasts a long time and is one of the strongest materials available for construction. There are also many other benefits to using steel in residential construction. 

The drawbacks of using steel in construction include cost, weight, and susceptibility to corrosion unless it’s pre-treated.

4. Other Metals

While steel dominates the building industry, there are a few other metals that also have a place in residential construction.

Aluminum’s used for roofing, windows, wire, and air-conditioning ducts. Copper tubing’s prevalent for water pipes and copper wire’s widely used in electrical wiring. It’s a popular choice for decorative elements nowadays too.

All metals are prone to corrosion so it’s important to use only treated materials in your home construction. 

5. Versatile Concrete 

Concrete’s made from a mix of cement and an aggregate like gravel and stone.  Once it’s mixed with water, concrete starts to harden.

Because it starts out as a fluid substance, concrete’s good for building unusual shapes and is a popular choice as a substrate for floors. 

Although it hardens to a rock-like consistency, concrete has low tensile strength, so it’s usually reinforced with steel rods or bars. When it’s used this way in construction, it’s a durable, strong material.

One of the major benefits of concrete is that it’s mixed onsite so it’s easy to transport.  

6. Cement Composites

Cement’s made of a precise blend of silicon, calcium, silicon, iron, and aluminum particles.

It mainly serves as a binder to create other types of composite building materials. For example, hydrated cement paste mixed with wood fibers and particles creates precast building components.

Other types of composites include laminated composites and plastic composites. 

7. Glass Walls

Glass is best known for its use as window panes but it’s becoming increasingly popular when used for glass walls in modern buildings.

Glass is an attractive option if you’re looking for a lot of natural light in your home and can also have insulating properties. Unless it’s reinforced with tiny strands of wire mesh, glass breaks easily and it’s an expensive option if you’re using it in large quantities. 

It’s an eco-friendly option too since glass is one of the most easily recyclable materials on Earth.  

8. Other Natural Construction Materials

These types of materials include a range of eco-friendly options such as straw bale construction as well as wattle-and-daub construction.

Recycled plastics are also widely used in the final details of construction like fittings, insulation. Some entrepreneurs have even come up with eco-bricks made entirely from plastic waste and plastic soda bottles. 

People have used stone in construction for thousands of years to create strong buildings that have lasted through the ages. One only needs to look at the fortresses and castle of yesteryear to understand how durable stone really is. 

Due to the high cost, excessive weight, and labor involved in using stone, it’s most commonly used in the form of stone veneers nowadays. As such, it’s a popular, attractive option for high-end homes. 

Choosing the Best Construction and Building Materials

Nowadays, home builders want something more from the construction and building materials they choose. Aesthetics are an important consideration too. 

If you want more ideas about sustainable, attractive, and hardy options for building your house or upgrading your interiors, keep browsing our website. We’ve got all the best information on today’s top design and construction methods.