Is a wooden or masonry house better?

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Building a house means navigating a sea of choices

In recent years, various construction technologies have been developed, among which prefabricated wooden structures are growing and spreading rapidly, a valid alternative to the “traditional” method (in masonry).

Very often we are asked which method is the best, but the answer is not so obvious because they are both valid solutions. Choosing between a wooden or traditional house depends on personal preferences and needs.

But what are the differences between the two construction methods? And what are the advantages of a wooden house compared to brick ones?

The differences between a wooden and masonry house

The first big difference between the two systems is undoubtedly the material, that is, the wooden house is built with composite wood panels (CLT or frame), while the brick house is built with brick blocks or bricks.

Wood is a perfect material for this purpose thanks to its many innate qualities such as resistance, sturdiness, flexibility, hygroscopicity and above all sustainability.

Cement and concrete can provide similar properties, except for sustainability. Unlike wood, a natural store of Co2, these products emit Co2 during their production.

Another big difference is the construction method: while the traditional one is carried out on site, the wood foresees a prefabrication system.

The construction times are also considerably different. In the wooden house, thanks to the prefabrication work, times are certain and fast. In the traditional one, being performed on site it is certainly more flexible but considerably longer.

Noise is another substantial difference between the two systems. The acoustics in the wood system are excellent since the wood fibers dampen the propagation of the acoustic wave, while the traditional system being more rigid requires dampers to be improved.

The traditional system has a greater mass than the wood system and this certainly implies greater stiffness of the structure but walls with greater dimensions and the low elasticity make them not very anti-seismic.

The advantages of the wooden house

Both systems have their advantages but the wooden house certainly has an advantage. Thanks to its wonderful material, the wooden house can boast of the following advantages:

100% sustainability, thanks to the material and its supply chain and also to sustainable management systems such as PEFC;

certain times and costs, thanks to a very high level of prefabrication;

better acoustics, thanks to its natural sound-absorbing capacity given by its fibrous and porous structure which is excellent for absorbing sound;

anti-seismic, thanks to its flexibility and lightness;

high resistance to fire, thanks to low carbonization rate and maintains its structural characteristics for a long time;

maximum thermal efficiency, thanks to a meticulous design.

Choosing a wooden house is therefore not only a more sustainable choice but also a guarantee of speed of construction and overall performance.

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