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Wood Usage In Commercial Construction: Its Benefits And Disadvantages  

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Wood is one of the oldest building materials. Nonetheless, it remains a popular and well-loved construction tool up to this date, mainly because of its versatile and naturally available characteristics. It’s composed of solid fibrous elements from a significant part of a trunk and other branches of a tree.  

These sturdy and convenient features make wood materials ideal for many establishments. However, apart from its beneficial usage in commercial projects, it also exhibits characteristics that can be disadvantageous in building creation.  

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Advantages of using wood in commercial buildings:  

1. Impressive thermal resistance 

As time goes by and the temperature increasingly changes, the establishments’ materials naturally alter in size and volume. Sometimes it causes linear and volumetric expansions, adversely decreasing the materials’ strength. For instance, areas made with steel components quickly expand with boosted heat having a considerable potential to collapse.   

Thus, wood is one of the most recommended elements in vicinities where high temperatures will directly hit. This material doesn’t expand when placed against heat. Its humidity level doesn’t fall below 5%, no matter how dry the prospected weather is. The increase in temperature even helps boost its strength level, especially once the heat completely dries out.  


2. Excellent electric insulation  

Wood is also often preferred as a much healthier and safer material because of its resistance to electrical current, just like phenol-formaldehyde. It showcases a perfect combination of magnificent electrical insulation and poor electric conductivity.   

This way, you can ensure your clients and their customers’ protection from any static or electric shock arising when your office building uses metal, plastic, and similar components.  


3. Natural aesthetics 

Elegance is innate with wood materials as its tree origin is candidly exhibiting a unique color, design, grains, and textures that vary depending on how a manufacturer slices it. Hence, a visually attractive area is secured in the bag if you aim to use it as a decorative element in your commercial constructions.  

Furthermore, you’re free to enhance it, so it suits better to the environment—varnish, paint it in darker colors, or give it a bright or mat touches.  


4. Wide variety of wood choices  

For the record, about 5000 wood types are available in the worldwide market. Each kind can differ in gravity, macroscopic, and microscopic structures.  

At the same time, it consists of different thermal, acoustic, physical, and electrical, as well as mechanical properties, achieving every client’s desire. For example, you can pick woods lightweight in size for heat insulation and sound absorption purposes. Meanwhile, heavyweight wood suits for establishments’ constructions.  


5. Perfect sound absorber  

Wood is an optimal material for sound absorption, preventing echo and noise. Sound velocity travels faster in wood than in gases and liquids, similar to what you can observe in metals. In addition, due to this element’s lightness and structure, you can notice the low sound energy loss.   

Therefore, if your client plans to install a concert hall in their commercial establishments, you can suggest building it with wood. For a much clearer presentation in theaters, you can add an acoustical plaster and flush Elmdor access doors and panels to keep the noise out.  


Disadvantages of using wood in commercial buildings:  

1. Susceptive to fire 

When considering utilizing wood materials in your project, remember to inform or remind your client of its organic compounds. Wood typically contains carbon and hydrogen that effortlessly combines with oxygen and burn, making it susceptible to quickly catching fire.   


2. Vulnerable to various fungi and pest attacks 

As stated, wood is composed of organic compounds like carbon nutrients from which fungi derive energy. Moreover, the nitrogen component present in the wood aid in the fungi’s growth.  

In the meantime, wood materials are also vulnerable to many insect pests, including termites, powderpost beetles, marine borers, carpenter ants, and bees. This insect attack significantly adds to the economic loss of your commercial building.  


3. Naturally deteriorates overtime 

In the long run, no matter how high the wood quality you installed in your establishment, it’s bound to degrade, especially with repeated dry and wet soaked or direct exposure to high or low temperatures and even direct sunlight. Not only that, biotic decay due to different fungi or insect onslaught is inevitable.  


Constructively weigh wood’s pros and cons for efficient building usage.   

As a construction material, wood showcases a fair share of advantages and disadvantages. Hence, you must carefully weigh its pros and cons before installing one. Nevertheless, most of its presented disadvantages have resolutions ready such as coating, drying, and impregnation, to minimize issues. Make sure to look up these essential steps to prevent quick deterioration and ensure long-time usage of wood materials.  







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