3D-printed houses are the talk of the town. More and more companies are entering this market with their own 3D printers and services. But is the use of this new technology worthwhile?
We took a closer look at the pros and cons of 3D printing technology.
Advantages of 3D-printed houses
Proponents of 3D printing often highlight the time savings and reduced ecological footprint. With this technology, foundation walls can often be erected more quickly than with traditional methods. Furthermore, fewer workers are needed to set up the foundation walls, leading to cost savings.
Companies claim that 3D printing uses less material. This has the advantage of emitting less CO2, especially when using cement and concrete.
Additionally, 3D printing allows for alternative designs that would be challenging to achieve with conventional construction methods. Many of the houses produced in this way have good insulation, which is significant in regions where there is traditionally less insulation – such as in the USA.
Disadvantages of 3D-printed houses
Many companies emphasize the cost efficiency of 3D printing, but this varies widely. Although 3D printing of houses is often faster, the use of concrete can increase costs. In comparison, traditional construction with other materials might be more cost-effective. While 3D printing requires fewer workers, these are often highly specialized professionals in high demand.
Regarding the environmental balance, there are also considerations. The material used for 3D printing often consists of concrete mixtures with a high cement content, increasing the CO2 footprint compared to conventional concrete. It should also be considered that materials like bricks or wood can be more environmentally friendly alternatives in many contexts.
Another disadvantage is that the technology is not yet available everywhere. However, this could change soon. More and more companies are exploring the technology.
What a 3D-printed house looks like from the inside
Californian influencer Shelby Church showcases a move-in-ready 3D-printed house in a recent video, realized by the US company ICON. The video gives an impression of what a house built with 3D printing looks like.