Straw Bale Building FAQ


Do straw bale houses burn easily?

Written by The Administrator. Posted in FAQ

Loose straw, burns easily, just like wood shavings. Baled straw tends to simply smoulder, like trying to burn a phone book. The key factor is how easily a fire can obtain oxygen; tight baling of the straw severely limits a free flow of oxygen. Most importantly, strawbale houses are traditionally covered with stucco. (render)

Tests have shown time and again that stuccoed strawbale houses have a much greater resistance to fire than do conventional wood structures.  At a certified laboratory in New Mexico, a plastered straw bale wall system easily passed a two-hour fire test, which is required for commercial construction.

The growing list of council building departments which have approved strawbale construction is indicative that strawbale construction is not only safe, but is in fact safer than conventional timber construction.