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Yolanda Howard
Structural engineer
Asked a question 2 years ago

What are main differences between masonry and timber buildings?

What are the main differences between masonry and timber buildings? What are their benefits in aspects such as durability, insulation, construction, etc.?

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Masonry building : 

Masonry is the building of structures from individual units, which are often laid in and bound together by mortar. The term masonry can also refer to the units themselves. For masonry construction, the common materials are brick, building stones,etc. Masonry is highly durable form of construction. 

Benefits of Masonry Buildings : 

Fire protection ; Fire protection benefits of concrete masonry are recognised by the Fire service and insurance industry. The extra ability to resist fire comes from the types of aggregates used and the equivalent solid thickness of the masonry units. 

Sound Control ; Masonry is an ideal sound barrier, providing reduced sound transmission relative to the size of the wall. 

Structural durability ; Masonry construction provides solidity, permanence and a real sense of substance. 

Energy efficiency ; The main benefit of masonry construction is the cost setting derived from its capacity to store energy and to delay the passage of heat. 

Timber Buildings ; 

Timber construction is a category of framing styles typically characterized by the use of large solid wood panels for wall, floor and roof constrution. It also includes innovative forms of sculptural buildings and non-building structures formed from solid wood panel or framing system. 

Benefits of Timber Buildings ; 

Low embodied energy if constructed in local timber. Quick build time. Reduced time to weather the structure. It can be built to exceed 60 year design life. Low volume of waste on site requiring removal. Durable and easy to maintain.