build concrete house

Planning to build a concrete house?

Concrete might be the most used building material in the world. It’s strong, durable, insulates sound well and it’s resistant to nature as well with proper insulation. And of course, concrete houses can also look pretty good as well.

There are at least 5 types of concrete house plans at the moment for concrete home builders to pick from. The first one is done with removable forms and poured concrete. The second one is the concrete blocks. The third one is precast panels. Fourth is insulating concrete forms(ICF) and fifth is autoclaved aerated concrete (AAC).

Forms and poured concrete

Forms and poured concrete are done on the construction site. Forms must be done first so the pouring can happen. Inside the forms is also reinforcing steel structure and after the pouring is done, curing begins.

Floors and ceilings are also done with the same technique. After the concrete has cured for a week the forms can be removed. This kind of building with concrete is also resistant to wind and other pressure as it’s pretty solid all around.

Building with concrete forms is one of the traditional ways to go with it. It’s a solid piece of concrete when done well so it can handle a lot.

Concrete block house

A concrete block house is pretty true to its name, blocks made of concrete. Held together by mortar and very resistant to wind as well. It’s also a very traditional way to build houses so there should be no problem in that department.

It’s built in a different way, but still pretty much like a poured concrete house. The blocks are hollow and it’s reinforced horizontally and vertically with rebar so there’s not that much difference with the outcome.

Precast concrete homes

Precast concrete homes are often built on plants and then transported to the building spot. Precast concrete panels are insulated with foam and everything like electric wiring is done ready at the plant.

Production on plants protects the precast panels from weather and the quality should be standard. It’s also a fast way to build when everything is done.

This is a more modern take on concrete building. It’s good side is that building with precast parts can be quite fast and you can see it a lot when you look modern building at cities.

Insulated concrete forms

With insulating concrete forms, like its name, concrete is poured into permanent forms. With this having a concrete house with wooden panels is possible. This type of building provides lots of insulation so it should be good for cold and hot areas. It also makes it energy efficient as warmth doesn’t escape so easily.

This is more cost heavy option, but if you plan to live in the house for a long time, it can save itself back with the energy save you will have.

Autoclaved aerated concrete

Lastly, autoclaved aerated concrete (AAC) is a lightweight foam concrete block. It was invented by Sweden and used more in Europe. It provides very good fire resistance and like its name, it’s really lightweight building material. Because of the airtight chambers in their structure and microbubbles, its a good thermal insulator.

I haven’t personally seen a lot of houses fully build with AAC, but I’ve seen it a lot in bathrooms and other walls where light structure and fast building time is needed.

Building a DIY concrete house

Concrete house construction is precise work if you want good results. It also takes patience as everything has to be well measured to fit well.

The pros of concrete houses are quite good though so it’s worth the effort. The overly simplified process would be building a foundation, getting walls up, then the roof. Then install windows and doors.

Every house needs some kind of foundation and concrete foundations are stable ones. With a concrete house, weight and everything else will have to be taken into attention. What kind of soil is it built into and does it need extra support etc.

Building walls is really about what kind of concrete building type did you end up with. Concrete blocks, precast, and insulation concrete are all built-in in different ways, the same goes for poured concrete.

The last thing would be the cost of a concrete house. Concrete houses might be a little more expensive to build than a wooden frame house, but they can even out with time. If the insulation is well done it might save money in the long run if you live in a windy area for example. What affects the price is local material prices, cost of labor, what building systems are used, etc.

Concrete floors are durable

Concrete house floors

Concrete house floors can be done with all kinds of materials from wood, laminate, vinyl, tiles to natural stone, or even pure concrete surface. Since it’s a concrete house let’s think about concrete flooring.

To find out concrete floors pros and cons, it would be good to consider their properties. Concrete is hard/strong when it’s polished. It’s able to handle lots of pressure at a single point and also daily use.

Another good thing is that it should be quite inexpensive if the floor is already made out of concrete. It could be polished, stained, textured, stamped, etc. Polished concrete is also easy to keep clean. With a properly coated concrete floor, you don’t also have to worry about it getting wet too much.

Another good thing is that concrete floors are long-lived, might last for decades with maintenance. Concrete floors in the kitchen are good as it can handle lots of traffic, can handle stress and it’s easy to clean and if done properly it will look fine.

Other rooms like bathrooms, garages, and entry rooms to the house also benefit from concrete floors as they see lots of use. Some polished surfaces and coatings can resist oil and dirt very well so it’s easy to keep those spaces clean.

If you want concrete floors that look like wood, stamped concrete floors are a good solution. When the concrete is wet from pouring, it’s stamped with something imitating natural building material like wood. It’s used a lot in patios, decks, and driveways so why not inside as well.

3d printing a concrete house

I guess anyone, who has ever looked into 3d printing, is curious when 3d printed houses will be available on the market. 3D printed buildings are researched all around the globe and there are some examples of printed buildings already. With automated machines doing the work, it’s thought to be a cheaper alternative to traditional building.

3d printed house cost will probably be one of its strongest selling points as companies are promoting houses that cost only a fraction of what traditionally built. Also, some companies are promoting structures that are stronger than traditionally built.

3d printed house models might also be more innovative if we follow what is being done with the smaller 3d printers. It will be interesting to see what the future holds for concrete printing.

Conclusion

As you can see there are many kinds of concrete houses being build and concrete can be used in innovative ways. Personally, I can’t wait for 3d printed houses to become more common.

When looking for concrete house design, it’s good to compare the building cost, energy efficiency, and the final outlook as well. There’s nothing stopping you from combining the best qualities of all of them.

Also, here is some fun speculation on building concrete shelters as it is near this subject. And while we’re at it here is a guide on concrete water tanks as those might be important to some people who live where water storage might be needed.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *