14 Factors That Affect the Selection of Construction Material
A sound product is possible only with sound materials and therefore, materials are the key to everything. This is especially true for the construction industry; the quality of the building is majorly dependent on the materials used. The building materials you select will determine the overall strength, longetivity and appearance of the building. Thus, be careful and choosy while selecting the building materials. So, if you are wondering how to shop for your building and where you can cut corners, this article is what you need. Read on to know the factors that influences your decisions regarding the construction materials.
As the name suggests, materials used in construction are generally known as construction materials or building materials. Any material which is used to make any building components beginning from foundation to the roof, including doors and windows are all called building materials.
There is a wide range of building materials available in the market and it can be difficult to decide the best options for your various needs as the selection of construction material requires to take note of various factors.
- Life of the material
- Budget/Cost of material
- Handling and Storage
- Local availability
- Skill required and its availability
- Nature of project
- Aesthetic appeal
- Warranty or guarantee
- After sales support and service
According to ‘Shri Mahadev Desai’, CMD of Sthapati Designers & Consultant PVT LTD, the leading multidisciplinary consultancy organization of India since 40 Year. following are some significant factors that affects the selection of construction materials and can help you while selecting the material based on your needs.
Factors Affecting the Selection of Construction Material
Strength is an essential parameter for quality control in the construction and most important selection criteria for building material. It shows the ability of a material to withstand the failure under the action of stresses caused by loads such as compression, tension, bending and/or impact etc. that can be caused either due to the forces of nature or can be man-made.
02. Life of Material
House is what you make one time in a lifetime. Hence for the long life of the building, all materials should have long and maintenance free life. The durability of the house depends on the materials used so don’t cut corners or else be ready to pay hefty maintenance costs.
03. Cost of Material
Cost of material is one important factor while choosing the material for construction as ultimately it will lock your choice willingly.
04. Handling and Storage
While selecting the building materials, it’s necessary to take into account their handling and storage because it affects the construction time, requirement of labour and equipment for handling, and of course the cost.
05. Local Availability
Availability of building materials also affects the cost and the time of construction because certain materials are available at a particular place and are difficult to transport. In that case, not only the transportation costs will be very high but it will also delay the work. On the other hand, if the material is locally available it decreases the transportation cost. It’s also a time saver and construction work can also be done smoothly.
Another important aspect of the choice of materials is the climate. Factors like the average range of temperature throughout the year, rain or snowfall, seasons, amount of sunlight, required ventilation and wind are areas of concern. Hence chosen material for construction should complement the climate. When climate comes in the picture automatically the properties of materials also come in the picture.
Therefore, make sure that the materials you choose are according to the climate you are building house in.
07. Skills Required and its Availability
While selecting the material it is important to know the extent of skill required to use such materials. It may increase the cost of the construction because you have to appoint/hire a skilled person (labour) to use that material and if the skilled person or labour is not available particularly in remote areas then it will delay the work.
With the development of the construction industry, the demand for building materials is increasing, and also responsible for the rise in carbon footprint, i.e. use of cement increases the carbon emission. Hence eco-friendly and sustainable building materials like GGBS- ground granulated blast furnace slag, fly ash, meta kaolin, silica fume, rice husk ash etc. rather than the use of cement.
09. Nature of Project
Choice of material is a great deal in construction. The choice of material should be done cautiously as it directly affects the user. One significant area of concern which governs the choice of material is the nature of the project. Nature of project means residential, commercial, gathering space etc. The material used defines the built space. It also leads to other key factors like investment budget.
10. Aesthetic Appeal
Everyone has different tastes and requirements and therefore, if one person considers something attractive, it may not appeal to the next. Only you know what kind of home/construction/building you will like to live in. As an example, the type of flooring material you select can change the look of the home or building. Hence, you have to select a flooring material which will not only suit your tastes but also fits into your budget such as e vitrified tiles, ceramic tiles, granite, marble, kota stone, wood etc.
Based on your requirements like strength, aesthetic look etc. you should define the specifications and quality of materials that would go into the house. Assume you want to purchase cement for construction then it’s essential to know what type of cement you want to purchase whether OPC or PPC, cement grade etc.
12. Warranty or Guarantee
While buying any material also check the product literature, technical specifications, terms and conditions of the warranty, guarantee etc. that is usually mentioned on the packaging or described on the website of the dealer or manufacturers because sometimes what the salesperson presents to you or otherwise what is understood by you can be an eyewash.. So, take time when you go through the product literature so that you have the right products and no regrets.
13. After Sales Support and Service
While purchasing the materials keep in mind that support and services are essential after sales. Hence, you have to check that seller provides support and service like spares, normal repairing or annual maintenance etc.
In summary, there is a lot of experimentation going on in the building industry and we are witnessing various new materials and technologies being born every day. Thus, the selection of construction materials and its application in the building or the structure is of great importance.
I hope that this article will help you to make a wise, a rational and a dependable choice. Good luck!