Jan 16, 2006 8:18 pm
I am looking at building a house in the Blue Mountain, (west of Sydney).
As this is a high risk area for bush fires, I am looking at alternative building materials with which to build the new house..
Today I was reading about AAC (Autoclaved Aerated Concrete).
If I am to believe what I read, this is a light weight concrete like material that can be cut easily, is VERY fire resistant (does not burn) and does not attract rodents or termites etc...
All this, along with good thermal abilities and sound proofing, makes it sound like an ideal material for building a house in the mountains.
Has anyone here had experience with AAC? Anyone here have a house that was built with it? Anyone who has actually built with AAC?
Boral would have me believe that you can build a house faster with it, and that it is less expensive than other building materials? Is this accurate?
What does it cost (ball park)?
Finally, , would I have trouble finding a bricky who can work with AAC?
Re: Building with AAC3
Jan 23, 2006 2:35 pm
Lightweight concrete is great. Go for it!
It is very common in Europe and we are planning to use it too, you are much better of than battens and cardboard walls.
Even if you are the first in your area, you can't go wrong with it.
CSR Hebel will be able to find a suitable bricklayer for you.
To make it perfect use European designed joinery (tilt & turn windows) with double glazing.
Don't bother with the "standard aluminium joinery", its thermal performance is so poor and the hardware is a disgrace
Re: Building with AAC4
Jan 27, 2006 1:04 pm
Thanks for your response.. There is a whole lot of development going on in my area at the moment and a couple of days ago I noticed that 3 of the blocks have CRS Hebel pallets on them.. The floor and wall system.. So I'll be keeping a regular eye on their development over the next couple of months.
For anyone interested in this (who may live close enough) , the development can been seen on Sunnyholt Rd at Acacia Garden just north of the new M7 off ramp. (27 Jan 2006)
Re: Building with AAC5
Jan 30, 2006 2:03 pm
window expert is corect, AAC is great stuff. It has been around long enough now that most tradespeople have encountered it at some stage.
The products thermal and fire resistance characteristics are second to none, and it easily halves the time it would take to enclose a house in brickwork. From a cost perspective, the comparison is difficult because a lot depends on your house design and what you are comparing it to, however typically hebel will cost around $75m2, + render $25m2 + paint $15m2 compared to say around $100m2 for face brickwork.
Hope this helps
Re: Building with AAC6
Apr 21, 2006 9:47 am
Thanks again for the replies..
I have also been looking at Zego. This too looks good. But I imagine that a house made out of this stuff, and filled with concrets, would weight a ton (or several).
Has anyone here had any experience with Zego?
Re: Building with AAC7
Jul 20, 2006 10:15 pm
I too have been looking closely at Hebel for an alternative building product. I'm in Mackay qld and like the thermal qualities and the sound proofing abilities. Our local supplier however has said 2.5 years if he's to build a hebel house for me, so I'm now looking at owner builder and getting my hands dirty. There's an excellent book by Alan Staines called "house building the Hebel way" or something like that, I just happened across it in my local library.
I'd build in block rather than panel to avoid too much wood in my termite festy area.
Re: Building with AAC8
Jul 21, 2006 10:31 am
Hebel was huge in Melbourne 10 or so years ago but then its reputation got trashed by a few jobs that may not have been prepared and erected properly, hence no-one was prepared to touch it.
My understanding is to be very careful as it has to be erected exactly to the specifications or you will have problems with it.
I would talk to a Building Inspection Service (eg: Tyrells in Sydney) to get an opinion as to whether or not they have seen many problems with it. If not, then go for it.
Whatever you do, don't just beleive the advertising!
Re: Building with AAC9
Aug 11, 2006 3:44 pm
Well, since I started this thread I have looked long and hard at the options and have decided to go with Zego.
Not only that, but I am going to build it myself!
At this stage that development will start around the end of 2007. This gives me time to get my owner builder licence, and to learn as much as i can about buliding a house. It can't be that hard, right?
Re: Building with AAC10
Aug 13, 2006 10:12 pm
No, of course not. Why else would we need to put our own homes on the line to satsify Warranty Insurers, in order to satisfy Government regulators in order to comply with the LAW!!
Sorry Dobly, but yes it can be that hard and that is why some of us have made it our profession. If it was so easy then there would be no need for any builder qualification would there - anyone could do it!
Just the same, the LAW does provide you the option of DIY so all the best and I hope it goes well for you.
Re: Building with AAC11
Aug 16, 2006 11:25 am
Sorry Dobly, but yes it can be that hard and that is why some of us have made it our profession.
It was a rethorical question... Of course it is going to be hard..
I am a professional software developer and project manager with a diploma in computer programming and over 15 years experience. If someone suggested to me that software development is 'not hard, right?' I would have given to same response as you..
But I would have added, 'it's not hard, if you are willing to learn what you need to learn'.
From my own study I have learned that nothing is hard, if you learn how to do it and are physically able.
This project will not start until the end of 2007 or 2008. That is over a year away. In that time I plan to learn as much as I can. Maybe even do a course or two.
Any suggestions on how I can skill up for this project? Courses, books, recommended magazines?
Bear in mind that there is only so much that I will be doing myself..
I will put up the Zego walls, and do most of the interior and some landscaping, etc... But all the other MAJOR stuff, like putting the roof on, the plumbing, the electrical, the slab (or fountations) and more, will be done by professionals. Of course.
There is also (finance permitting) a solar power system going in. I'll not have anything to do with installing that!
So sorry if I belittled your profession.. That was the furthest thing from my mind. From what I have seen already, building a house is far from a trivial task.
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