When it comes to renovations, upgrades or projects from the ground up – the choice of building materials will heavily dictate the process and quality of a project. From the materials of foundation to the material of choice to enhance a wall, ceiling or roof – we break down the five common building materials found on site along with their benefits because a knowledgeable contractor and builder knows that picking the right building material means enhancing and extending the life of the build.
This building material has been used for thousands of years. From the structural support to the foundation, wood has a rich and vibrant history when it comes to construction and architect. Wood is one of the most natural materials available not to mention one that can be cost-efficient. While some might think as not a strong building material, it is strong and durable. It is a building material that is flexible in all senses – from having it bent and cured, wood can be moulded to suit a building structure and shape.
What makes wood a choice and common material – other than its longevity in the industry, it is a highly environmentally sustainable material that is aesthetically appealing. It can be used in both commercial and residential buildings and can be complemented with other materials as well. Whether it is steel, marble or aluminum, wood works well with other materials if not aesthetically but also functionally. Use wood for a frame, complement it with an access panel – whether it be an HVAC, soundproof or a valve box, whatever the need or purpose, wood can be easily accompanied and enhanced in functionality.
To date, steel is one of the most commonly used materials in construction, from the skeleton of a building to the actual materials found within. Security access panels are also made of steel and can be commonly found in commercial and industrial spaces. Steel offers many advantages, for one it can bend or be manipulated without risking its strength and durability. In areas that experience extreme winds or are prone to earthquakes, steel structures are able to withstand the shaking through its durability and in a way it's plasticity.
One downfall of steel as a building material or indeed any material is that it is highly susceptible to breaking down in extreme heat. It is not fire resistant and depending on the level of the steel, at a certain temperature of heat, it begins to lose its strength and durability and can collapse or break.
Concrete, or as it is better known to contractors and builders, reinforced concrete is composed of steel making it very strong. Typically used in the structure and foundation of a building – once it has been applied, it will take multiple hours before it has settled and hardened. When it comes to concrete, similar to many building materials like access panels, windows, and paints, concrete comes in various types. From high performance to lightweight concrete and water resistant, a contractor will know which is the ideal concrete to use and recommend on a project.
To one who is inexperienced in construction might think that glass merely is meant to be used for windows; however, glass is a building material that is both versatile and underrated. One of the most common types of glass used was obsidian for its aesthetic appeal and strength. Considered a luxury in the construction industry as it requires both skill and resources to create it.
In construction, glass can be used as a means of facades from windows to walls and beams and floors – which would require exceptional strength and durability. When it comes to the properties of this unique building material, some traits include the transparency, strength, and workability. Just as many materials in construction come with various purposes and types, glass also comes in different forms and materials.
Aesthetically appealing, the stone is a common material choice for flooring and walls. The texture of stone makes it versatile, from a smooth finish to a textured one- stone can also come in many different colors. Some examples of stone used in construction include granite, marble, and sandstone.
Depending on the purpose and use of the stone, it is a highly expensive choice of material. When it comes to marble countertops, the quality, color, and its make can increase cost and the time to create it.
Combining Materials to Finish the Job
When it comes to construction, it is the use of different materials and products that can enhance and strengthen the finished job. From framing to the foundation, no job is complete let alone a success without taking the benefits of various materials like wood, steel, and concrete and amalgamating both. Take for example access panels – access panels are a combination of purposes such as that of a door and window and created what we know as the panel. The materials which make the access panel are also a combination of both metal and insulation – therefore enhancing its purpose and versatility.