The Pros of Building Concrete Houses
There are many factors to consider when building a new home. One of the most critical decisions is what material to use for the foundation and walls. There are numerous options for the type of primary construction material to use for building a house.
Concrete has become a popular choice in recent years, but it’s not always the best option. In this blog post, we will discuss the pros and cons of building with concrete so that you can make an informed decision about what’s best for your family.
Concrete is Strong and Durable
Concrete is a solid material that can withstand a lot of weight. This makes it a good choice for homes in areas prone to natural disasters, such as earthquakes or hurricanes. A family home made of different types of concrete materials will last more than three generations.
Concrete Walls are Fire Resistant
The material concrete is also fire resistant, which can be vital if you live in an area that is at risk for wildfires.
Concrete Walls are Weatherproof
Another advantage of concrete is that there are weatherproof types of concrete. It doesn’t rot, rust or decay to last longer than other materials. This means that precast concrete homes are ideal for areas with high winds and extreme weather conditions.
Concrete Houses are Energy Efficient
Concrete houses are also energy efficient, especially if they are made using insulated concrete forms. Insulated concrete forms help keep the heat in and cool air during the summer. This energy efficiency can help you save money in the long run.
Concrete Forms Makes it Faster to Build Concrete Houses.
Concrete forms are also one of the reasons why it is faster to build a concrete house. With forms, you can create the exterior and interior walls of the home in hours, if not minutes, which speeds up construction time.
The Use of Insulated Concrete Forms and Precast Concrete
The technology used in building concrete houses has significantly advanced in the past decades. Before, concrete housebuilders will need to put up a wood frame construction before pouring in the concrete. Another old way of building a concrete wall is to lay down concrete blocks one at a time. Laying concrete blocks is a time-consuming process. Fortunately, the construction industry has made significant advancements in its concrete home construction methods.
Nowadays, there are two popular building methods to finish a concrete home design: insulated concrete forms (ICFs) and precast concrete.
Insulated Concrete Forms
ICFs are made of high-density polystyrene foam sandwiched between two layers of structural steel. The polystyrene foam provides insulation for the house, while the steel gives it strength. Insulating concrete forms are used to create exterior and interior walls with little need for concrete masonry. The use of ICFs will prevent having a wall with exposed concrete. With ICFs, you have a concrete house built in days rather than weeks or months.
ICFs also come in different shapes and forms to accommodate your concrete house design. If your concrete house design has curved walls or walls that are angled at 45 degrees or 90 degrees, you can get ICFs that will be designed to create them. ICFs also come with slots to hold the reinforcing steel bars in place, so you don’t have to worry about having the bars correctly when the concrete is poured.
ICFs are also ideal in the construction of commercial buildings and establishments. Home and establishment owners who decide to use ICFs for their construction will get to have their buildings used and rented sooner.
Precast concrete is made by pouring wet cement into molds called “forms.” These forms can be made in any shape or size, versatile. Once the cement has hardened, the forms can be removed and used to create other concrete slabs or a specific concrete structure.
Concrete home construction is also made easier by using precast concrete to create your living spaces' ground floor, deck, or flooring. The concrete casts can be made onsite or in a factory, depending on the design of your concrete home. Once the concrete panel systems are delivered, you can place concrete casts wherever needed.
The Cons of a Concrete House
While there are a lot of advantages to selecting concrete construction when building your dream homes, choosing concrete construction also comes with several disadvantages.
Concrete is Heavy and Can be Hard to Move
One disadvantage of concrete as the primary material for a family home is that it is cumbersome. This can make it hard to move if you need to relocate your home. It can also be challenging to repair or remodel a concrete house.
A Concrete House is not a Sustainable Home.
Another disadvantage of concrete homes is that they are not as sustainable as homes built with other materials. Concrete is a non-renewable resource, and it takes a lot of energy to produce and transport concrete products.
Concrete is not as Environmentally Friendly as Other Materials.
Another disadvantage of concrete is that it is not as environmentally friendly as other materials. When burned, concrete emits harmful pollutants into the air. In addition, the manufacturing of cement, which is used in making concrete, also emits harmful pollutants.
Concrete Panel Systems Requires a Lot of Maintenance
Concrete also requires a lot of maintenance if you want it to last for a long time. If not sealed and protected correctly, rain and snow can erode the surface of your concrete house. The mortar between the bricks can also deteriorate if not treated with a waterproofing sealant every few years.
Concrete is not as Energy Efficient as Other Materials.
Although concrete has some energy-efficient properties, it is not as efficient as other homes, such as a wood-frame house. If you want a genuinely energy-efficient home, you may want to consider using different materials.
Precast Concrete Homes are Noisier than Other Types of Houses
Another disadvantage of precast concrete or raw concrete houses is that they are noisier than other houses. The sound of rain on a metal roof, for example, will be louder in a concrete house than in a wooden frame home.
Exposed Concrete is Susceptible to Damage from Weather
An exposed concrete wall, especially an exterior wall, is also susceptible to weathering, damaging it over time. The leading cause of concrete weathering is the freeze and thaw cycle. When water seeps into the cracks in the exposed concrete, it expands when it freezes. This expansion puts pressure on the raw concrete and eventually causes the cracks to widen. Fortunately, you can prevent this by ensuring that the exposed concrete wall is sealed and protected from the weather.
Concrete is not as Aesthetically Pleasing as Other Types of Houses.
While house contractors can make a concrete home into different shapes and designs, it is not as aesthetically pleasing as other materials, such as a wood-frame home or a brick home. This means that a concrete home may not be the right choice if you are looking for a traditional wood-frame home style.
So, what’s the verdict?
In conclusion, there are both advantages and disadvantages to choosing concrete home construction when building your dream home. It is essential to weigh the pros and cons of each material before making a final decision. If you decide that concrete home is suitable for you, select a qualified contractor who can help you execute your vision and ensure that your concrete home lasts for many years.