Wood is an excellent natural resource which since the dawn of time has enabled mankind to survive, as well as constitutes the primary material of the first erected buildings. As a natural resource it also has unique ecological properties, creates a microclimate which is healthy and friendly to humans, and has the ability to self-regulate moisture. Additionally, it is a very durable and flexible material which, subjected to appropriate processing and protected by correct substances, also becomes inflammable. A bevy of exceptional characteristics of this natural resource, as well as technological advancement, make wood an extremely modern and primary construction material in many regions of the world.
Unfortunately, timber frame housing technology reached Poland with a huge delay. In our society there is still a general lack of understanding of the technology, as well as mistrust towards it and overall disorientation. All this results in the technology being much less widely used in comparison to other countries in Europe and around the world. Nevertheless, the situation is most definitely changing, and year by year an increasing number of investors in Poland become persuaded by the charm of living in a timber structure house and the benefits that entails.
There are many reasons to invest in the construction of timber frame houses.
Here is a list of the primary advantages of this technology:
- Healthy microclimate – wood has the ability to self-regulate moisture, it creates a unique, human-friendly microclimate (impossible to achieve with other technologies) in the building’s interior.
- Energy-efficiency – timber frame structure houses offer excellent thermal protection, the roof and exterior wall structure is completely filled with thermal insulation. The walls constitute a neutral barrier and do not accumulate thermal energy from the outside, nor from inside the building. As a result, in the winter we only heat up the air within the house, without wasting energy on heating the walls (as is the case with masonry technology). On the other hand, during the summer the hot air does not permeate inside the building. These properties ensure lower costs associated with heating.
- Short construction time – construction of a house out of previously prepared structural elements takes approximately 3-4 months. This is a result of the fact, that it is a “dry” technology in which any wet masonry works are limited only placing the foundations (no process downtime). After construction is completed, the houses are immediately ready to live in.
- No seasonality – the process of building a house using the timber frame technology can be carried out regardless of the season, also in winter. Only ground works and placement of foundations require positive temperatures.
- Low structural weight – the light frame structure of the timber house limits the size of foundations and, as a result, their cost – thereby reducing the overall price of the investment. As a result, construction of the house is also possible in difficult land and hydrological conditions, e.g. in mining damage areas.
- Low exterior wall thickness – filling the structure with thermal insulation limits the thickness of exterior walls, thereby making it possible to maximize the available floor space by approximately 10% compared to masonry housing with the same exterior dimensions.
- Easy reconstruction and modernization – the light structure makes it possible to easily and quickly reconstruct, extend or modernize the building.
- Structural reliability and durability – the structural timber used to build the frame is extremely durable and flexible, and subjected to appropriate mechanical and chemical treatment it also gains good fire-resistance, as well as resistance to ageing. Despite the overall opinion, correctly constructed buildings using this technology are resistant to strong variable loads, i.e.: winds and hurricanes, and are extremely durable in exploitation.
- Acoustic insulation – the walls have excellent acoustic insulation.