The Pros and Cons of Geodesic Dome Homes
Some experts speculate that geodesic domes are the homes of the future. While we’re a long way from entire neighborhoods filled with domed structures, it’s important for builders to stay up to date on emerging trends.
Geodesic domes are growing in popularity among home buyers who want unique structures that can stand up to harsh weather conditions and natural disasters. People also turn to these structures because they are more energy-efficient and cost-effective than traditional square homes.
They resist the natural elements. The dome shape is very efficient at shedding elements such as wind and snow. In fact, there is some evidence that these structures can even withstand hurricane-force wind. Geodesic domes are particularly resistant to this type of force because they have fewer flat surfaces, allowing the wind to move around the home. In addition to withstanding powerful winds, domed homes can hold up better to strong earthquakes. Concrete domes have even been known to survive flying debris as large as cars.
They are extremely energy efficient. Geodesic domes promote more efficient air circulation and keep temperatures even throughout the structure. This can make them two to four times more energy-efficient than traditional homes. These homes insulate very efficiently due to their unique shape. Since light actually refracts and stays inside the dome, these structures are able to take full advantage of solar gain, which reduces the need for artificial lighting. For younger buyers who want more energy-efficient homes and aren’t put off by the domed aesthetic, geodesic domes make a lot of sense.
They are very strong. From a pure engineering perspective, geodesic domes are superior to square homes. They are the only man-made structure that actually gets proportionally stronger as they increase in size. They are also lighter, more structurally sound and require fewer materials. When comprised of bio-ceramic, geodesic domes are also highly fire-resistant.
Things to Consider
When it comes to constructing a geodesic home, builders can expect to confront some challenges. Chimneys can be difficult to place and, if it’s a larger home, fire escapes can be expensive to install. It can also be very difficult to create divisions and rooms within domes structures, especially if you don’t have a lot of experience building them.
Since the average home is square, basic appliances, fixtures and utilities are manufactured for right angles. If you aren’t used to building these types of homes, it can be difficult to find off-the-shelf materials that fit the home. That said, these items are becoming more common as geodesic dome homes continue to gain in popularity.
In areas regularly affected by tornadoes and hurricanes, modern homeowners are increasingly turning to geodesic domes because they hold up better to storms and high winds. Due to the shift in construction needs, the interior design and utility options for geodesic domes have increased substantially. Still, it takes a knowledgeable builder to streamline the construction of a geodesic dome. If you think you might be able to take advantage of this growing market, now is a good time to familiarize yourself with the construction process and establish relationships with the right suppliers.
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