6 Must-Haves When Building a New Home to Protect Against the Impacts of Climate Change

The Bautex Wall System achieves all the must-haves for a new home to protect against the impacts of global climate change. Bautex Blocks are disaster-resistant, energy-efficient, healthy, and sustainable.

New Home Construction is on the Rise

In the United States (U.S.), con­struc­tion of single-family homes in 2019 is expected to grow by nearly 9 percent. With all this new con­struc­tion, there are several must-haves when building a new home in 2019. Top on the list is methods and materials that protect against the con­se­quences of climate change.

New Homes Must Protect Against the Impacts of Climate Change

According to the Fourth Annual Climate Assess­ment recently put out by the U.S. Global Change Research Program, the earth’s climate is now changing faster than at any point in the history of modern civ­i­liza­tion, mainly as a result of human activ­i­ties. In the U.S., the impacts of global climate change are already being felt and are projected to intensify in the future if actions are not taken to reduce green­house gas emissions.

Con­se­quences of Global Warming are Extensive

Increas­ing Tem­per­a­tures: Average tem­per­a­tures have risen across the lower 48 states since 1901. Eight of the top 10 hottest years on record have happened since 1998. Average global tem­per­a­tures show a similar pattern, with all of the top 10 hottest years on record worldwide occurring since 1998. The impacts of increas­ing tem­per­a­tures are extensive.

  • Seas are warming, rising, and getting more acidic 
  • Storm activity in the Gulf of Mexico, Atlantic Ocean, and the Caribbean have increased over the past 20 years
  • Snow cover and glaciers are shrinking, and sea ice is retreating
  • Higher tem­per­a­tures are expected to increase the amount of moisture that evap­o­rates from water and land, which will also cause rainfall patterns to shift
  • As tem­per­a­tures have heated up over the past century, the occur­rences and duration of droughts have increased in the American West
  • Drought is a factor attrib­uted to larger and more frequent wildfires and longer wildfire seasons.

Increas­ing Pre­cip­i­ta­tion: Total yearly pre­cip­i­ta­tion has increased over land areas in the U.S. and worldwide. However, changing weather patterns have caused specific regions, such as the Southwest, to expe­ri­ence less pre­cip­i­ta­tion than usual. Notably, nine of the top 10 years for extreme one-day pre­cip­i­ta­tion events in the U.S. have occurred since 1990. Con­se­quent­ly, flooding is becoming more frequent along the U.S. coastline.

Six Must-Haves When Building a New Home

The six must-haves when building a new home will protect a family and their home from fire, flood, and severe wind events. In addition, the design, methods, and materials must create an energy-efficient and healthy home. Bautex Wall System is an ideal building product for achieving all these must-haves when building a new home.

1. Fire-Resistant Home Design

In 2017, 2,630 people in the U.S. were killed in their homes by fire, which makes fire-resistant design a must-have when building a new home. Sadly, the recent wildfire in Paradise, Cal­i­for­nia destroyed 6,700 buildings, almost all were homes. Fire-resistant homes are essential for pro­tect­ing today’s home­own­ers and their house against increas­ing wildfires. Critical com­po­nents of a fire-resistant house include passive fire pro­tec­tion shields and fireproof exterior roofs, walls, vents, window, and door. 

2. Flood-Resistant Home Design

Building a flood-resistant home, par­tic­u­lar­ly in flood hazard zones, is an important must-have when building a new home. Flood-resistant houses protect against flooding and excessive rain and from tides and storm surges. Also, the design of a home in a flood hazard zone must be according to the American Society of Civil Engineers ASCE 24 Standard. The flood-resistant design must include elevated struc­tures, products that can get wet, and design assem­blies that quickly dry when exposed to moisture.

3. Wind Resistant Home Design

Building a wind-resistant home with a con­tin­u­ous load path from roof to foun­da­tion is a vital must-have for a new home. A con­tin­u­ous load path is critical to holding a house together during high wind events. A con­tin­u­ous load path ensures that when a load, including lateral (hor­i­zon­tal) and uplift loads, puts pressure on a home, the load will move from the roof, wall and other parts to the foun­da­tion and into the ground. A strong con­tin­u­ous load path is key to holding the roof, walls, floors, and foun­da­tion together during a severe wind event.

4. New Homes Must Be Energy-Efficient

In 2019, energy-efficient designs that achieve net-zero energy use are a must-have in new home con­struc­tion. An energy-efficient home has con­tin­u­ous insu­la­tion, products with thermal mass, high-effi­cien­cy heating and cooling systems, con­trolled ven­ti­la­tion, and energy-efficient windows, doors, and elec­tron­ics.

5. New Homes Must Be Healthy

A healthy home design promotes sus­tain­able practices and an indoor envi­ron­ment quality (IEQ) that is safe, healthy, and quiet. The IEQ of a home sig­nif­i­cant­ly impacts the health, comfort, and overall wellbeing of the family. IEQ attrib­ut­es include applying proper ven­ti­la­tion, max­i­miz­ing day­light­ing, con­trol­ling moisture, opti­miz­ing acoustic per­for­mance, and avoiding the use of materials with high-VOC emissions. 

6. An Excellent Choice for New Home Con­struc­tion is the Bautex Wall System

The Bautex Wall System provides all the must-haves for building a new home that is disaster-resistant, energy-efficient, durable, and healthy.

Bautex Blocks are Fire-Resistant

An excellent product for fire-resistant home con­struc­tion is Bautex Wall System. Bautex Blocks meet and exceed the indus­try’s standard for fire resis­tance. The Blocks have an ASTM E119 fire rating of four-hours and ASTM E84 reported values for flame speed of zero and smoke devel­op­ment of twenty (Bautex never catches fire and extremely low amounts of smoke are released when burned). They also achieve the NFPA 101 code because the Bautex Blocks meet the NFPA 286 and E 84 fire testing standards.

Bautex Blocks are Flood-Resistant

The Bautex Wall System is a superb material choice for a home in a high- or low-risk flood zone. The Bautex Wall System is moisture resistant. It will not degrade when wet and it keeps its original shape and dura­bil­i­ty during and after a flood. Also, the appli­ca­tion of the Bautex AMB 20-WP Air and Moisture Barrier and proper sealants to the exterior of the wall helps to prevent moisture getting into the walls. Fur­ther­more, Bautex Blocks are inorganic; therefore, not a food source for mold and mildew. Impor­tant­ly, the Bautex Wall System can be used to meet the ASCE 24 criteria for flood-resistant products.

Bautex Blocks are Wind-Resistant

The Bautex Wall System provides the strength and resilience to resist the heavy winds and flying debris during a severe wind event, like a hurricane or tornado. The Bautex Wall System fulfills the FEMA 361 and FEMA 320 guidance in storm zones with wind speeds up to 250 miles per hour. The Bautex Block also has the mass and strength to withstand the impact of wind-driven debris at speeds more than 100 mph, keeping people and property safe.

Bautex Blocks are Energy-Efficient

The Bautex Wall System is a superior high thermal mass product that minimizes air and moisture infil­tra­tion and provides con­tin­u­ous insu­la­tion. The Bautex Wall System provides an R‑14 con­tin­u­ous insu­la­tion that meets, if not exceeds, the codes and standards of the latest energy codes. 

Bautex Blocks Create a Healthy Home

Bautex Wall System helps to create a healthy indoor envi­ron­ment that is safe and quiet, which will and enhance the comfort and pro­duc­tiv­i­ty of the family. 

  • Bautex AMB 20 air and moisture barrier applied to the block wall prevents air and moisture infil­tra­tion to the interior of a home, which can cause unhealthy mold. 
  • Bautex Blocks have no volatile organic compound (VOC) emittance
  • The Bautex Wall System insulated concrete wall system reduces the transfer of sound from the outside to the inside of a structure. In fact, the Bautex Wall System received a high Sound Trans­mis­sion Class (STC) rating of 51 and a high Outdoor-Indoor Trans­mis­sion Class (OITC) per­for­mance rating of 47.