Building a Sustainable House Against Harsh Climates


When it comes to building, sustainable materials are what everyone is after. Whether it's a new build or a renovation, finding the right sustainable materials for any climate is the key. The project may be in an area prone to tornadoes or hurricanes, or perhaps wind storms are a problem. No matter what the case may be, it's important that you choose the right sustainable materials for your project. You can go eco-friendly while also adding a touch of protection. Check out these five tips on finding the right materials to build a sustainable home no matter what Mother Nature may throw your way.

1. Improve The Exterior

Building a Sustainable House Against Harsh Climates

The first line of defense against weather of any kind is the exterior. It is very important that the siding you choose is not only sustainable but durable as well. There are a variety of options to choose from when it comes to residing a house or building. You can choose a strong, durable steel log siding that gives you the look you're after without being high-maintenance. Wood siding gives you the look and feel of wood without bringing in pests such as termites that can wreak havoc. Yet another durable sustainable option is fiber cement siding. 

Any of these options is a great way to not only protect but improve the look and feel of your project overall. 

2. Proper House Wrap Installation

Building a Sustainable House Against Harsh Climates

One common issue is moisture and air coming into a house, even if they feel it has been sealed properly. One thing you can do to help improve that sealing is finding the proper house wrap. A breathable house wrap adds an extra layer of protection so that you can avoid moisture and air from coming in when it should not be. Moisture can cause a lot of damage when it seeps in and this house wrap is perfect for preventing that.

3. Energy Efficient Foundation

Building a Sustainable House Against Harsh Climates

Concrete House by A-cero and Joaquin Torres Architects

ICF houses, or insulated concrete form houses, make for a great choice in building an energy efficient foundation. These houses are not only durable and efficient, they can withstand a variety of harsh climate issues. These houses have been shown to withstand wind speeds of upwards of 250 mph. That means if your project is in a state where hurricanes and tornadoes are prevalent, this item can give some much-needed protection and durability. There are many advantages to this type of house. Not only can it withstand high winds, an ICF house can also help lower energy costs, quieter building, and has more strength than a typical wood-built house.

4. Choose the Best Material for the Roof

Building a Sustainable House Against Harsh Climates

When it comes to the roofing, not just any material will do. As you're looking for a roof, you'll find a variety of material options to choose from. There are clay tile roofs, typical shingle style, concrete tiles, and metal, just to name a few options. According to John Anderson of Severe Weather Roofing Denver, you want to make sure that whatever roof type you choose, it's the right fit for the harsh climate and offers you sustainable materials. Consider the area and what the roof will deal with on a daily basis. Consider whether the owners will want a low maintenance roof or if they prefer a certain look and style for their home.

5. Go for Sturdy Doors and Windows

Building a Sustainable House Against Harsh Climates

Another area that needs to be safe and sturdy are the windows and doors. When powerful winds rip through an area, the type of windows and doors on a building will be put to the test. Will they hold or will they give in if a little hard wind comes through? It's very critical that all windows and doors are of a high-quality sustainable material.

These are just a few ideas to build or renovate your project to be sustainable and protected against harsh weather conditions.

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