posted on Nov, 5 2012 @ 01:21 PM
Except in the south most houses in the US are "stick built." Why? Because the raw material is abundant. Stone and brick aren't. Today houses are
usually built with 2" x 6" timber for the walls to allow for R-19 insulation, covered in 4 x 8 plywood or "composite" boards, then the actual siding.
Older houses have 2" x 4" walls. The siding on the outside is also usually wood. but increasingly composite or wood/plastic blends; the inside walls
are gypsum board. Floors and ceilings are made with 2" x 10" or 12" boards. Most houses are built on a poured concrete foundation or slab. Newer
houses have earthquake strengthening requirements. The "Building Code" governs everything. Going from the inside to the outside:
paint->wallboard->house wrap->insulation in 2x6 cavity->plywood->siding->paint
Now, about durability. It depends on what you are trying to be durable from. A Hurricane with 100mph+ winds is hard to beat for destructive power. If
it's a direct hit, anything will go. This last storm had a lot of flooding involved. Once again, doesn't matter if you have a house made from sticks
or stones. The water doesn't care. The reason the destruction was so severe is because people built so close to the water.
If we're talking earthquakes, a stick-built house may fare better than one made of brick. If we're talking fire, a slate or tile roof is going to be
better than cedar shakes. I've seen some of the stone buildings in the UK. Some of them lean on one another. One earthquake and the whole town would
fall down into a heap of stones. But then, you don't have many earthquakes.
edit on 11/5/2012 by schuyler because: (no reason given)