Low-rise buildings can be of residential or commercial nature. In residential buildings, it is more or less static in its function whereas in case of commercial buildings, it is more dynamic in its function. Hence in commercial buildings, flexible component is used by contractors. Both of these buildings use materials such as welding generators, cement, terrazzo grinders. The construction material used are timber, steel, concrete, enclosure systems, interior finishes partitions, ceiling finishes, floor finishes, life-safety systems, etc.
Building Code of Australia requires that for the construction of low rise buildings, a thorough knowledge of content and purpose is required. These low rise buildings falls under Class 1 to 10 with the floor area not more than 2000 square metres under the classification of the buildings.
• Using slip resistant flooring on surface which is exposed to water, weather, spills, etc.
• Using appropriate lighting to carry out the intended work in the building
• Using concrete beams which can be erected from above to avoid dislodging during installation.
• Connecting beams to column to provide support to the structure
• Using prefabricated rising system to ensure safe work at heights.
Following these standards helps in using suitable construction material.
For selection of material to be used for construction of low rise building include following the assessment criteria laid down by Building Code of Australia. These assessment criteria includes,
• Properties of the materials that can be use, their compatibility and non-compatibility (Park, Park, Seo & Noguchi, 2011).
• Identification of material which are structurally adequate.
• Tolerance for assembling and installing material are identified.
• Short term and long term degradation of materials are considered
• Alternative materials are evaluated
• Materials selection is done according to their safety to be used for specific purpose.
• Environmental impact of the material to be used
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The safe and correct handling of the construction material is very important as it would ensure the overall strength of the project. Thus the people who would be the part of construction project is assessed based on a set of skill set which is specified by Building Code to Australia. This assessment ensure that the contractors are competent enough to contruct a safe project.
Stone- Stone is non-combustible and can be used in fire.
Plastic – Plastic is combustible and cannot be used in fire
Steel- Steel loses its strength above temperature of 300 degree Celsius.
Glass- It depends on the quality of glass used but most of them cannot sustain fire
The defects in wood is caused by insect and weather. Due to these causes, the defected wood can cause:
• Breakage while being used in construction
• Less durability
• High cost of construction
The organic solvents used in timber include pesticides such as copper naphthenates, imidacloprid, pyrethroids, etc. (Karshenas & Feely, 1996).
This solvent is used for construction of residential and commercial buildings. It makes the material durable with giving an amber finish and durability.
Whether a building material is resistant to corrosion depends on the environment to which it is exposed. Often the coating or paints used on these building material makes them less prone to corrosion (Peterkin, 2009). However stainless steel is known to be less prone to corrosion.