When you’re thinking about building a home, is bamboo the ideal material? If so, here are some of the factors to consider. While bamboo can be bent into many different shapes, it can be expensive to build a house with it. If you’re considering building a house out of bamboo, you’ll need to hire a reliable craftsman. And because of its inherent weakness, it can be difficult to use in structurally sound construction.
Many uses of Bamboo Outside of Construction
Although bamboo has many uses outside of construction, it has become the darling of many natural product lovers and is now used in everything from flooring to cabinets and countertops to wall coverings. Like any other material, bamboo has its pros and cons. Consider these factors when making your final decision about bamboo as a building material. Bamboo is the future of building materials. Its popularity is growing rapidly, but the pros and cons should not be overlooked. Here are some of them:
Its impressive structural properties make it an ideal building material. Its compression strength is equivalent to that of concrete. There are more than 1500 species of bamboo, and they grow naturally on all continents, except Antarctica. To use bamboo as a building material, however, you must break architectural paradigms and apply new methods. And the beauty of bamboo is not just its rough, unfinished appearance; its strength makes it a great option for modern construction.
Advantages to using Bamboo as a Building Material
Another advantage to using bamboo as a building material is its low maintenance requirements. Although bamboo can be very durable, it does require some maintenance to prevent rot. Therefore, it should be kept elevated off the ground and have good roof overhangs. Moreover, it needs to be treated against insects. This can be done with a chemical called boron, which is normally a blend of borax and boric acid. However, boron is also available as a single compound.
The fibers present in the inner skin of the bamboo plant make it exceptionally strong. This wood is similar to oak in hardness, and its structure is similar to a tube with reinforced joints and segments. It weighs less than steel rods over long periods and provides energy efficiency and natural cooling. Bamboo is also resistant to cyclones and earthquakes. The only downside to bamboo is its limited weight and easy installation. Bamboo can shrink slightly more than other timbers, so it’s important to treat it against fungus and insects to prevent damage to the structure.
It is Versatile and can be Combined with Other Building Materials
Another benefit of bamboo is that it is versatile. It can be cut crosswise and lengthwise. It can be used for fencing, scaffolding, and thatching. Bamboo also has runners, which make it suitable for many settings. Besides the many applications, it also contributes to the environmental consciousness of people. It is also a wonderful building material that can be combined with other building materials. It can also be used for handicrafts, such as cutting boards, and can even make furniture and other items.
As a building material, bamboo can be treated with paint or stained to add luster and color. Because it has a natural luster, it is possible to use stains to highlight the wood’s beauty. For a more refined outcome, dark stains are recommended. You can also choose to customize your bamboo with contrasting accent materials. Lastly, bamboo can also be treated with water-repellent or fungicide.
Bamboo is a Good Choice for Low-rise Housing
Although bamboo is a renewable resource, it is necessary to import it from overseas for its availability in the U.S. Because growing conditions in this country are not as favorable, bamboo must be imported to the United States. Moreover, it is relatively light. In short, bamboo has many advantages and is an excellent building material. The most notable benefits of bamboo include the fact that it does not deplete the soil and is a great replacement for wood and steel.
In terms of durability, bamboo is a good choice for low-rise housing. Not only does bamboo grow quickly, but it is also abundant, making it a viable option. As a result, bamboo is becoming an ideal building material for the Philippines’ informal settlements. And the Base Bahay Foundation is pushing for the use of bamboo in these places. Its efforts are paying off. In addition to this, famous architects like Vo Trong Nghia and Yichen Lu, a German architect, have pushed for the use of bamboo in construction. The latter studied the use of bamboo as a low-cost construction material in Asia and the Pacific.
Bamboo is an Excellent Alternative to Timber
Because of its light weight and high strength-to-weight ratio, bamboo is an excellent alternative to timber. This material can be shipped easily and is environmentally friendly. Unlike timber, bamboo is also lightweight and strong enough for most construction projects. Besides being a good alternative for timber, bamboo is also a popular choice for designer homes. This means that the bamboo material is easy to use and can last a very long time. Bamboo is also a very eco-friendly option, which is important for any home.