Types of wooden houses
Wood has been the unchangeable construction material for centuries. Although its qualities have been underestimated and more brick and steel constructions appeared, wooden houses are regaining popularity. The advocates of eco-construction are introducing innovations making mass production of wooden building materials possible to protect from negative ecological impact and reduce GHG emissions. Energy-efficiency, durability, fire-resistance are only a few advantages of the wooden homes.
Wood has been a well-known building material since prehistory. During the last century, it was replaced by concrete and steel, as it was considered dangerous for fires and unstable. Now the adherents of the eco-building are actively bringing wooden construction materials back to life. Wooden homes are made from recyclable and biodegradable material, which will significantly reduce greenhouse gas emissions in the building industry.
Types of wooden houses constructions encompass:
- Log houses with the trunks assembled on the construction area;
- Heavy wooden framework with the beams latched together;
- Light wooden framework using the small components to connect building modules;
- Mobile houses produced in the factory and assembled at the final destination.
‘Mass timber’, a structural timber made out of softwood particles put together to form large pieces, is receiving more supporters and creates new solutions even for large-scale construction projects. The wood used for the material is pine, spruce, fir, birch, ash, beech. Mass timber is a term related to the products of various sizes and functions, such as:
- laminated veneer lumber (LVL)
- nail-laminated timber (NLT)
- dowel-laminated timber (DLT)
- cross-laminated timber (CLT)
Advantages of the wooden houses
- Energy-efficiency. Wood possesses high heat-insulating characteristics, keeping the house warm in winter and cool in summer and increasing the savings on heating and air conditioning up to 50% yearly.
- Eco-friendliness. Wood has a smaller carbon impact in comparison to the traditional construction methods as it absorbs CO2. Now building materials and construction generate about 11% of annual global GHG emissions. Wood is a completely renewable natural resource.
- Healthy to live in. Due to the ability of wood to maintain a comfortable microclimate and pass the air through the wood grain, the wooden houses are perfect for people who are inclined to have allergic reactions.
- Fire-resistant. Despite a stereotypical perception compressed masses of wood are quite difficult to ignite. If one side of wood catches fire the other does not even heat up, while metal becomes soft and concrete blocks often collapse. In case of fire, it is easier to leave the wooden house as no toxic fumes are produced.
- Durability. Another stereotype is that concrete is more reliable than wood, though we know about the houses in Scandinavia remain in great condition for 600-700 years and examples of concrete buildings torn down after 40 years. Wood is also known for exceptional absorption and resistance to vibrations providing seismic stability. Wooden houses remain stable even during strong earthquakes.
- Aesthetic value. The natural beauty of the material allows refusing from applying the finishing materials. Wood creates a unique atmosphere of warmth and coziness, a feeling of being connected to nature embellished by the special scent.
- Cost. Not only wooden houses are cheaper in maintenance, but their construction is also fast and efficient, which helps saving resources. Innovations and mass production of wood building materials lower the cost, speed, and efficiency of the construction.
Wood in sustainable construction
The use of wood for construction is beneficial for the ecology and its active usage will prevent an immensely negative effect on the building sector. Of course, this can only be stated if mass wooden material production does not result in further loss of forests. With a sustainable construction approach and emphasis on climate-smart forestry, the manufacturers plant new trees for each tree they use.
Wooden house - video