I should not have to explain this to anyone that is serious about home construction for prepping, but for the rest of you, a concrete/cement home could be what you are looking for in your home, bunker, shelter, or root cellar. It is strong, durable, and resistant to a lot of the common ailments of modern day construction.
Many buildings that were constructed with concrete or stone in Roman Empire Days are still standing… to some extent.
So, continue reading to see if building your home with concrete is the best thing to do as a prepper. You will learn the advantages AND disadvantages of concrete and new reinforced concrete concepts available these days.
Benefits of a Concrete Home
Strength and Durability of Concrete
Concrete is extremely strong and can be made stronger by reinforcing it. It can actually harden and gain strength over time. Moisture, Mold, and Pests don’t usually weaken it. A concrete home would double as a storm shelter.
Low Maintenance Requirements
Almost no maintenance is required for painted cement.
This is always a great thing to have in a home… natural fire resistance. Fires in the home can be fairly well-contained if one starts.
First, cement takes a while for the outside temperatures to affect it. This reduces temperature swings. This is the same concept used in rocket mass heaters. You may be able to reduce energy use by more than 15%.
Cement has reflective properties that will reflect more of the light energy than absorbing it. This means less cooling required. Now think if you painted it white…
Great Sound Barrier if ICFs are Used
You can reduce the sound penetrating the wall more than 80%. Ahh silence.
Insulating Concrete Forms (ICFs)
This is a technology that adds more insulation value to the walls and makes pouring faster, thereby making construction easier.
Disadvantages of a Concrete Home
The cost of construction is more than wood by about 1-8%
Longer Build Time
With ICFs, concrete requires less skill from the builder than it used to but it still takes longer to pour and form a home than it does to nail together a wood-frame house.
The only real option to finish cement is to add a stucco exterior. They still look institutional. With the total cost, adding siding to the home to make it pleasing to the eye, will raise costs again.
Hard to Remodel
Cement walls are hard to knock down. Cutting more windows it expensive and labor intensive.
Concrete is Hard and Strong, but it is more brittle and less ductile (stretch before break) than other materials. This means that if the design doesn’t take this into account, it can crack and give under tensile stress.
New Kind of Concrete Concepts
Cellular Fibro Concrete, Structural Lightweight Concrete, Foamed Concrete
Take the benefits of typical concrete and make it lightweight with better thermal properties and sound insulation. The cement is more durable and 66% the weight of regular cement and in the case of foamed or aerated concrete, the weight could be even less.
Rapid Drying Concrete
Quick drying concrete can shorten construction by 30%
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