Healthy alternatives

Wood (cedar, larch, spruce, white pine): present in large quantities in Canada, it is natural, insulating and stores carbon. The eco-habitation site recommends the use of eastern white cedar. The only drawback is that it is not fire-resistant and is often attacked by pests and mould. 

You must therefore choose a wood and a species adapted to your dwelling. You will find more information on eco home.

Brick and natural stone: very durable materials, resistant to weather, fire, pests and mould and requiring little maintenance. Their production/extraction releases a significant amount of grey energy. Nevertheless, their long service life makes them an interesting material for your exterior cladding.

Lime: it is a natural waterproof material, resistant to mould and fire. 

Metal and sheet metal: very durable materials that are resistant to weather, fire, pests and mould. The production of metal emits a lot of grey energy, however it is a recyclable material and requires little maintenance.

The installation of balconies, roof overhangs and galleries can be a good solution to extend the lifespan of your exterior coverings by protecting them from the elements.

Tips

Use silica-based mineral paints and stains for the renovation of your stone, brick or stucco facades. In this way, your walls will continue to evacuate the excess moisture contained in them. In addition, these mineral paints are non-odorous, non-toxic and do not emit VOCs. Impermeable products such as latex or silicone-based paints may cause paint cracking, mould, or even masonry cracking (see eco home).

Cementitious coatings, acrylic coatings, and vinyl (PVC) are good options for insulating, strong and durable coverings. However, their production is not very ecological, as they release large quantities of grey matter.

Think about using recycled materials from old barns, factories, old houses for example. It is an ecological and sustainable choice. You can find these recycled materials in private homes or in specialist shops.