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Construction Terms Study Guide

By
Updated on Jul 15, 2011

Practice exercises for this study guide can be found at:

Construction Terms Practice Exercises

At some point in your life, you may find that you're either asked to help build something or you have to hire someone to do it for you. It may be new kitchen cabinets, an entertainment center, a doghouse for your new pet, or one of a million other things. If you have a good idea about basic construction terms, it'll help you to better understand blueprints and plans, whether you're working from them yourself or designers show them to you for approval.

Have fun with these terms. They may even inspire you to try your hand at a little construction and remodeling just to see how things turn out. Good luck!

DEFINITIONS

  • aggregate   a mixture of sand and stone often used in concrete
  • amortization   a payment plan by which a loan is reduced through monthly payments of principal and interest (similar to a mortgage payment on a house)
  • appraisal   an expert's valuation of a property
  • balustrade   the rail, posts, and vertical supports along the edge of a stairway or elevated walkway
  • bedrock   a subsurface layer of the earth's soil that is suitable to support a structure
  • cantilever   an overhang that usually doesn't extend more than two feet
  • easement   a formal contract that allows a party to use another party's property for a specific purpose
  • egress   a means of exiting the house or building; egress windows are required in every bedroom and basement and should measure at least 4 × 4
  • escrow   the handling of funds or documents by a third party on behalf of the buyer and/or seller
  • infiltration   the passage of air from indoors to outdoors and vice versa; tends to be associated with unwanted drafts or leaks from cracks, seams, or holes
  • laminating   bonding together of two or more layers of material
  • oakum   loose hemp or jute fiber that's impregnated with tar or pitch and used to caulk large seams or pack plumbing pipe joints
  • partition   a wall that subdivides spaces within a building or room
  • rebar   reinforcing bar; ribbed steel bars installed in a foundation's concrete walls to strengthen the concrete; often comes in different thicknesses and strength
  • refrigerant   a substance that remains a gas at low temperatures and pressure and can be used to transfer heat, such as the Freon in air conditioners
  • shim   a small piece of scrap lumber or shingle, often wedge shaped; used to help force other pieces into position
  • soffit   the area below eaves and overhangs
  • turnkey   when the subcontractor provides all materials and labor for a job
  • underlayment   a quarter-inch material placed over the subfloor plywood sheeting and under finish coverings
  • veneer   extremely thin sheets of wood or a thin slice of wood, brick, or stone covering a framed wall

Practice exercises for this study guide can be found at:

Construction Terms Practice Exercises

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