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Top Sustainable Building Materials for Eco-Friendly Design

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Home Construction has gone through some evolution in the form of new materials and techniques that have become common during the process of building. When creating a plan for the house, architects no longer focus on coming up with a visually appealing idea only but a solution that brings about many other benefits for the homeowner as well. Safety and ease of maintenance are two of the common concerns that are the common goals of every architect around the world.

With the introduction of numerous material options, homeowners, as well as building designers, have become conscious of how their decisions affect the environment. Using green materials for construction benefits not only the surroundings but also the homeowner. In this article, we will discuss five of the top eco-friendly materials that are trendy for home construction these days.

1. Insulated Concrete Forms (ICF)

ICF homes have become extremely popular in today’s world owing to the various benefits that they offer the homeowners. ICF come in the form of large premade forms that are in the shape of panels joined with the help of metal rods. The outside of this form has a covering of insulating foam. During construction, workers would fill the gap between these panels by pouring concrete, which gives rise to a sturdy, insulated structure.

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Whether you wish to build a large structure or a small one, ICF reduces the total construction time significantly. ICF Homes present a chance for you to provide your client with a better sound barrier and significantly reduced maintenance costs. Moreover, the structure of ICF Homes is such that it reduces the emission of Carbon Dioxide, offers superior air quality, and guarantees energy efficiency.

2. Steel Siding

The siding of your house serves as an essential element in the overall protection of your home from external factors. You risk the integrity of your house by choosing a poor-quality siding for your house. Poor siding can also cause water and moisture to get inside your house thereby giving rise to problems such as mildew and mold. With the advancement in building materials, experts now recommend using seamless steel siding during the home construction of houses.

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This is because seamless steel siding makes the house look not only visually appealing but also eco-friendly. Because the siding is cut precisely according to the need, there is little to no waste making steel siding both, cost-effective and environmentally friendly. Steel siding is a recyclable material and when coated with cool paint it can reflect intense heat. This makes the structure of the house highly energy efficient.

3. Bamboo

Bamboo Panels have become extremely popular and are an efficient alternative to hardwood panels in the world of construction. These panels are made from strips that are woven together or laminated. The versatility of this material makes it extremely easy to install and is popular almost everywhere around the house.

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Home builders are using bamboo panels increasingly as a substitute for hardwood because bamboo is not only superior in quality but it also grows faster than hardwood. Bamboo is available in formaldehyde-free versions, which makes it free of harmful toxins.

4. Ashcrete

Ashcrete or Fly Ash is a fine powder that even though comes from pollutants and carbon dioxide emissions, is environmentally friendly. Fly Ash is recycled material and therefore eliminates the need for construction companies to make cement without wasting their time and resources.

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As companies are already burning coal, fly ash, which is a byproduct of these processes, can come in handy. Some industry experts believe that the fly ash bricks can absorb and store carbon dioxide making them environment-friendly.

5. Modified Wood

Modified Wood simply refers to a type of wood that industries produce by treating ordinary wood with compression, and heat. Modified Wood is known to have qualities that differ from those of ordinary wood when it comes to strength and structural properties.

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This type of wood is known to last longer as it has higher resistance against shrinkage caused by humidity as well as from getting damaged by various microorganisms. Manufacturers such as Kebony® are known to produce Modified Wood that is free of any toxins through eco-friendly practices.

Bottom Line

With Global Warming presenting serious challenges to the environment, it is extremely important that eco-friendly decisions are made before and during the construction process. By using the above-mentioned sustainable materials, builders can ensure a construction process that does not pose significant dangers to the environment.

Ian Mutuli is the Founder and Managing Editor of Archute. He occasionally writes about startups and tech for The Press Farm. He is also a graduate architect from The University of Nairobi, Kenya.