Building Materials

The construction industry uses a variety of building materials for various aspects of home construction. Architects consult with structural engineers about the load-bearing capacity of the materials they design, and the most common materials are concrete, steel, wood, masonry, and stone. Each has a different strength, weight, and durability that makes it suitable for different uses. There are national standards and test methods that govern the use of building materials in the construction industry so that they can be trusted to ensure the integrity of the structure. Architects also choose materials based on cost and aesthetics.

Building materials are usually divided into two sources: natural and man-made. Materials such as natural stone and wood-concrete, masonry, and steel are man-made. But both must be prepared or treated before use in the building. Here is a list of building materials commonly used in construction.


Steel is a metal alloy of iron and carbon and often other alloys in its composition that makes it stronger and more resistant to breakage than iron. Stainless steels are resistant to corrosion and oxidation due to the extra chromium in their structure. Because it is so strong in comparison to its weight and size, structural engineers use it to frame the structures of modern high-rise buildings and large industrial facilities. Some of its features are:

Steel has a ratio of strength to weight and strength to size.

It has a higher cost than other metals. Structural engineers can consult on choosing the most affordable sizes to use in a home to withstand the actual load on the building.

Steel installation takes less time than concrete.

Can be installed in any environment.

Steel can be prone to corrosion if installed or maintained incorrectly

Chromium, gold, and silver are commonly used for decoration or embellishments because they lack the tensile strength of steel.


Concrete is a composite material made of fine and coarse aggregates (rock, crushed stone, recycled concrete, and geosynthetic aggregates) bonded together by a liquid adhesive such as cement that hardens or hardens over time. Portland cement is the most common type of cement and fine powder obtained by heating limestone and clay in kilns and adding gypsum. Therefore, Portland cement concrete is composed of mineral aggregates that are bonded with Portland cement and water. After mixing, the cement hardens or turns into the rock-like material we think of as concrete.

Concrete attributes:

Power varies depending on the composition. Concrete industry suppliers typically prepare the materials used for their concrete and test the concrete mix for strength.

Concrete can be poured in such a way that it can take almost any shape and become a stone-like material.

It takes at least seven days to cure, so engineers and architects must consider the hardening time when designing construction plans for concrete construction.

Its versatility, cost, and strength make it an ideal material for a home foundation. Concrete house foundations are common because they can carry heavy loads and withstand the forces of the environment.

To increase the tensile strength of concrete, engineers often plan for it to be reinforced with steel rods or bars (rebar).


Among the oldest or perhaps the oldest building materials, wood has been used for thousands of years and has properties that make it an ideal building material – even in the age of engineering and synthetic materials.

For construction purposes, woodworking machines are machined and cut to standard dimensions such as 2 inches 4 inches (1.5 x 3.5 inches real) and 2 inches 6, 1.5 x 5.5 inches real to measure their size. Can be considered accurately in building plans – this is known as the next wood. Larger wood is commonly known as lumber or beam and is often used to frame large structures such as bridges and multi-story buildings.

Some tree species are better than others for some uses in some climates. Structural engineers and architects can determine which type of wood is ideal for a construction project.

It is easily accessible and is a natural economic resource.

The wood is relatively light and its size can be easily standardized.

Provides good insulation, which is why many architects and engineers like to use it for homes and residential buildings.

Wood has high tensile strength – it maintains its strength when bent – and is very strong when compressed vertically.

Because wood is light and must be pressed into contact with the surrounding soil, wood is a lesser choice for foundations or basement walls. (However, permanent wooden foundations, known as PWFs, have attracted the attention of builders due to the warm and pleasant atmosphere of the wooden basement they provide.) Most of the time, wooden frame houses usually have reinforced concrete or foundations and beams.


The most durable building materials available are the ones that have existed here for thousands of years: stone. The oldest building in the world is still made of stone. It has many advantages, although engineers and architects must take special care when planning a building using stone.

Dry stone walls made of dense stone have been used for thousands of years. Later, different forms of mortar were used to hold them together.

Because the stone is so dense, it is difficult to work with because of its weight and difficulty in moving.

Stone is not an efficient insulator, since it is difficult to keep warm.

Different types of stones are best for different uses. For example, slate is fire resistant. Granite is one of the hardest stones and one of the most durable products available. The Incas used limestone or granite to build their extremely strong buildings.


In building construction, single units (such as bricks) are used to build structures that are usually joined together by a type of mortar. Historically, clay bricks were baked in molds and kilns. The strongest and most common building unit at present is the concrete block, which may be reinforced with steel.

Masonry is durable and fire-resistant.

This construction method can withstand compressive loads, which makes it a good material for load-bearing walls.

Reinforced concrete masonry or in combination with reinforced concrete can support multi-story buildings and can be an economical choice.

While a powerful method for use in many types of construction, durable masonry installation can depend on the quality of the mortar and the way it is done.