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Sustainable construction is about reducing the energy and resources required over the life cycle of a building via innovative design. The best way to think about sustainable construction is to try and build structures entirely from the land. This means using natural organic materials instead of synthetic man-made materials.
Sustainable construction is becoming increasingly popular as people are more conscious about their environmental impact. But sustainable construction is not only about using Eco-friendly materials, the overall energy consumption of the building is also important. Below are some sustainable construction tips.
Selecting Natural Materials
Constructing a home entirely from natural materials requires careful research and planning. When substituting conventional materials for natural ones, it is essential you understand the advantages and disadvantages of doing so. For example, if you decide to substitute steel for a natural eco-friendly material, then that material must have similar properties to steel such as high tensile strength. Below is a list of natural eco-friendly materials that may be good substitutes for conventional building materials. Please note that the natural materials you select will depend upon the load and environment that material will experience.
Sustainable Construction Materials
- Precast concrete slabs require little processing. They are good for things like building facades.
- Reclaimed or recycled wood is great for high strength applications.
- Bamboo for high strength.
- Earth can be compacted densely, and act as a filler for walls.
- Cork can be used for insulation and flooring.
- Straw bales can be used for insulation.
- Sheep’s wool is good for insulation.
- Plant-Based Polyurethane Rigid Foam can be used for insulation.
Clever Energy Saving Design
Naturally make your Home Cooler
Unless you have air conditioning, making your home cooler in the summer is challenging. The main reason why a home becomes hot in the summer is due to the sun. Most people are aware they can help shield their home from the sun using insulation such as Celotex and rockwool. However, most do not consider the solar gain through windows. The best way to control solar gain through windows is to design a building so that windows cannot receive direct sunlight during warmer months. For example, a window could be recessed in a way that reduces direct sunlight, or positioned on walls which face the sun only in winter, but not in the summer.
There are other techniques to make your home cooler in the summer such as making use of wind direction. If your house is located where wind is forced to frequently travel in a certain direction, then this breeze could be used to cool down your home. For example, if you can open a window that is inline with the natural wind flow, this will helps make you feel cooler in the summer.
Think about a Roof Garden
When designing your eco friendly home you may want to consider a roof garden. A garden on your roof can help stabilise the temperature in your home, as the soil insulates your roof from the sun. The garden on your roof will also help to absorb rainwater.
Air Tight Buildings Save Energy
For a home to achieve an exceptional energy efficiency level it must be incredibly airtight. This is because airtight building require less enery and time to heat.
Sustainable construction is all about building things in a way that reduces environmental impact. There is also something very special about sustainable buildings. A home built entirely from natural materials almost blends into the surrounding landscape, making you feel at one with nature.