Monolithic dome homes are sturdy and energy efficient. They are used for various purposes including building schools, churches, sport facilities, homes and storage units. The chief component of a monolithic dome is the outer vinyl layer called an air form, inner layer polyurethane and a final addition of concrete to provide a structural support. However, besides the strength construction of monolithic domes, there are some disadvantages of this dome you can consider if you are planning to buy it.
The first disadvantage of monolithic dome homes is the unsustainable materials. The three materials used for constructing this kind of home are not the most environmentally products available. Vinyl and polyurethane are petroleum based and they can emit toxins when they are burned. Shortcrete is lasting, but it has a large initial CO2 footprint which is not good for the environment. The airform used as the chief material of monolithic dome homes is vulnerable. It can easily become damaged by vandalism and falling trees. Once the airform is damaged, water can seep into the underlying insulation and it will become a big matted sponge. The airform can be protected with aluminum, but it can be expensive.
The next drawback of this home is the poor ventilation. It creates a tight hermetic seal that is not always desirable for some activities like showering and cooking since such activities need dehumidification and forced air ventilation. To solve this problem, a hole can be made in the center of the dome to circulate air. Permits and property value are very important to be included in building monolithic homes because they may need special permits depending on the type of structure. A monolithic dome for a green may not need a permit while monolithic homes for residence or larger structure may need. Those are some disadvantages of monolithic dome homes can be considered before buying a monolithic home.