This note PRO 16, originally published in November 1997, was reviewed by Adrian Bennett in November 2002. This summary page includes recent updates to the topic since publication.
Building construction materials must be durable enough to perform their intended function over the required lifetime. An understanding of the factors affecting materials selection for different building functions, the means used to determine building materials durability, and the maintenance requirements of building materials is required. This note explains these concepts and provides practical examples of some common durability problems.