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Vinyl Flooring

Vinyl flooring is manufactured in sheets made of the polymer- Poly Vinyl Chloride. They are printed with interesting patterns and can be laid on smooth finished floors.

They have print patterns that resemble wood or stone. Viny Flooring is available in various thicknesses. Although they are not popular is Residential houses, they have been used in low budget homes.

Thick Vinyl Flooring has a cushioning effect which is very comfortable for bare feet. They are also a waterproof material, but care should be taken to make sure that water does not seep underneath the sheets through the edges. The floor should be moisture free before laying.

It is advisable to provide pads for furniture legs to avoid scratches in the Vinyl sheets. Fibre coated Vinyl sheets are weather-proof and do not shrink or expand with changes in atmospheric conditions. Vinyl Flooring comes at Rs.30 to Rs.200 per sqft.

More links on Vinyl Flooring-

Granite- Favorite for Kitchen counters & Charupadi

Granite is a natural stone available in various colours and patterns. In the Construction Market, Granite is available in polished form and is used mostly in the verandah and kitchen areas in Kerala Homes. The price normally ranges between Rs.65 and Rs,260 per sqft. Luxurious brands may even cost about Rs.275 to Rs.300 per sqft.
The price of black granite is around Rs.120 to Rs.140 per sqft. Sometimes a layer of chemical polishing is applied to avoid moisture absorption.
Flame finished granite can be used at places where you require a rough finish- like bathroom floors.
Granite is extensively used for charupadi and kitchen slabs these days.
Granite does not lose its color or lusture with time. You should be careful to assess the surface finish of the granite slab at the time of purchase.
Viewing the surface against bright light will reveal surface defects. Disadvantage of granite is that it easily forms surface scratches and the inability to rectify defects by polishing.

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Marble- Natural stone for Kerala floors

Although the popularity of vitrified tiles have diminished the usage of marble, they are still favourite among home-builders who prefer natural flooring materials. An advantage of marble is that scratches are not easily visible and that the floor can be re-polished to look as good as new over and over again.
The usual price is Rs.45 to Rs.120 per sqft. Labour charges including polishing would come around Rs 20 to Rs25 per sqft. 3 bags of cement will be required to lay 100sqft of marble floor, which is higher than that required for a tiled floor.
A variety of patterns of world re-knowned Italian marble is also available in Kerala. Marble from other countries is also available at different costs that range from Rs.250 to Rs.1500 per sqft. They are available in polished and unpolished varieties.
Composite marble is synthetically manufactured from crushed Italian marble and is priced at a range of Rs.250 to Rs.400 per sqft. Labour cost is around Rs.20 to Rs.30 per sqft. Jaisalmer marble from Rajasthan is priced from Rs.75 per sqft onwards.
The main reason for the decline of marble's popularity are the following- lack of varieties compared to tiles, more labour-intensive when it comes to cutting and laying the marble slabs and tiles, more time-consuming process, high polishing costs.
Most contractors prefer mirror-polishing rather than wax-polishing, although they are more expensive, as they make the floor smoother and shiny.
More links on Marble-

Wood Flooring Options in Kerala

Solid Wood Flooring
Local and Imported Solid Wood Flooring is a highly durable material that can last for the lifetime of the house, if properly laid. It is an expensive flooring material with a price that ranges between Rs.150 to Rs.450 per sqft. including labour charges. Skilled workers are essential for laying wood floors.
Apart from imported varieties of wood, local varieties like Teak, Irul and Mahogany are also available in the market.
Many sellers provide a take-back guarantee for a period of 1 year. Although Chemical Coating can be applied for Water proofing, it is not advisable to leave stagnant water over the wooden flooring for longer periods.
Careful maintenance is required by cleaning frequently and avoiding waxing or polishing of the surface, so that the floor stays aesthetically supreme and functionally durable.
Laminated Wood Flooring
It is now a trend in Kerala Residential Architecture to have Interesting patterns in Laminated Wood Flooring, especially in Bedrooms. Long Laminated Wood Blocks are used for this type of construction.
Each of this blocks have a wood surface with a poly urethene coating, with a plywood base. They are available in the market in bundles of such blocks, which are clipped to each other using tongue and groove joints. The cost of laying the flooring is Rs.80 to Rs.250 per sqft., inclusive of labour charges.
Flooring contractors often give you a guarantee of 10 years, with a damage repair clause. Wood laminates are available in various patterns. Bamboo Laminated Floors are also available in the market.
They are not recommended in areas with heavy foot traffic, as they may wear off and fade. Adequate termite protective treatment is also required.
More links on Wood Flooring-

Aluminium Fabricators in Kerala

Category: Aluminium Fabricators - Ernakulam
jofabindustries,kathrukadavu , kaloor, Pin Code: 683517, Ph: 0484-2330559, Fax: -
Services: Aluminum framed insects screens opening,sliding or roll up for windows matching & wooden colour powder coating & professionals in Aluminium Fabrication

Kevin Industries
Category: Aluminium Fabricators - Ernakulam
Contact: BEENA
45/769 Peediackal Korrea Rd Pchlm-682012. Phone: 0484-2394425

KMS Aluminium Fabrications
Category: Aluminium Fabricators - Ernakulam
Ceeyem Shpng Cmplx Companyppady Jn Aluva-683106. Phone: 0484-2622358

Category: Aluminium Fabricators - Ernakulam
Contact: Jaya Tourist Home North Paravur-683513. Phone: 04862-2447024

Mini Aluminium Fabricators
Category: Aluminium Fabricators - Ernakulam
Contact: 8 1058 SNgr Kpdm-682002. Phone: 0484-2210457

Modern Aluminium Fabrication
Category: Aluminium Fabricators - Ernakulam
Contact: ARUN
Kottankavu Rd Vnla-682032. Phone: 0484-2341988

Net Traders India
Category: Aluminium Fabricators - Ernakulam
Contact: saji thomas
Vattamala estate,K.P Vallon road,Kadavanthra,Cochin, Pin Code: 20, Ph: 04843245716, 9495514397, 9895175538 ,04716458037, Fax: -
Services: Leading Mosquito Screen,aluminium fabricaton manufacturing ,distributing,sales and servicing compaly.

Royal Interiors
Category: Aluminium Fabricators - Ernakulam
53/1309 P.K.Road Thevara-682013. Phone: 0484-2664399

Sherbrooke Aluminium Products
Category: Aluminium Fabricators - Ernakulam
Kadavil Court Arangath Cross Road Pullepady-682018. Phone: 0484-2367966

Sherin Aluminium Fabricators
Category: Aluminium Fabricators - Ernakulam
Contact: PRINCE
34/1198-A BKM Rd Edp-682024. Phone: 0484-2344979

mig-462,5th street,9th cross road,
panampilly nagar,kochi-36, kerala,
pin-682016, ph: 0484 4017979, 4028607,
fax:0484 2363930,
mr.joseph kochiery(M.D):99470 05007

hi tech fabricating company, abdulla complex,
karukappally junction, kaloor,
kochi-682017, ph: 0484 3209102,
contact mr.sinil: 98474 30800,
email: horizon

aroma associates, corporate zone,
2ancharage off foreshore road, palliyil lane,
kochi, kerala, pin-682016, ph: 0484 2364440, 2364414,
fax:0484 2363930,
mr.joseph kochiery(M.D):99470 05007

aluminium solutions, near mosque:(international stadium),
palarivattom, janatha bus stop, cochin-682 025,
ph: 0484 3215501, 3215502, 3215503,
mr. g. sunil:9447048473

all types of aluminium works, door no. 569/A,
civil line road, thrikkakara cochin-021,

alumninium fabricators, kandakkadavu,
kochi-682008, ph: 0484 2247802,
contact mr. joseph, mob: 98950 24890

Techno Fab,Chalikavattom 0484 -322843

aluminium fabricators,kappalandimukku,
12/826,cochin-682002,Ph: 0484-6542426, 9447123531.

Ceramic Tiles- Kerala Flooring Options

Last week we discussed 'Vitrified tiles' on our Blog. The difference between Vitrified Tiles and Ceramic Tiles is that while the former is fully consolidated, Ceramic Tiles are polished only on the top surface. They are available in various shapes, colours and patterns. Their prices also vary according to the quality, and are available for Rs.30 to Rs.100 per sqft.
Rough finished 'Rustic tiles' can be used to pave bathroom floors and cost about Rs.80 per sqft. Glossy and smooth Ceramic Tiles, Leather Finished Ceramic Tiles etc. are available at various price ranges.
Do make sure that the floor is properly levelled before laying Ceramic Tiles, because they have a tendency to break, if unevenly laid. They may also absorb water and fade. Low quality Ceramic tiles are also prone to break at the edges. The labour cost for laying Ceramic tiles is around Rs.8-10 per sqft.
Ceramic Tiles had ruled the Kerala market for a few decades before the advent of Vitrified Tiles. They are still used extensively for dadoing and flooring of bathrooms, kitchen counter walls and for facade tiling.

More links on Ceramic Tiles-

PortaCabin Suppliers in India

Mini Fabrication has a successful track record of 12 years in the fabrication & pre-fab construction industry. At Mini Fabrication Excellence is a commitment. In its constant strive for excellence, Mini Fabrication has emerged as leader in the fabrication & pre-fab construction industry.

Mini Fab's wide ranges of pre-fab products are popular as on site accommodation at large-scale construction sites such as BARC, HPL, IBP, INTERCONTINENTAL HOTEL, INTERNATIONAL AIR PORT, PORT TRUST, ONGC.

Mini Fab is a company that is built around a team of professional who are innovative in designing and execution, which creates a unique, durable range of pre-fab products. With their commitment towards excellence, Mini Fab produces precise custom built, cost effective products and on schedule deliveries.

Mini Fab has a prompt after sales service team and efficient national sales & services network.

Mini Fab offers excellent solutions for on-site accommodation, which guarantee customer satisfaction.
Basic frame made with hrc steel 4mm / 5mm. (t section)
Basic frame coated with epoxy paint.
Flooring is made out of angular frame & cover with 12 mm ply
Top cover with 16 SWG heavy aluminum checkered plate.
Complete body cover with strong poly extrusion.
Poly extrusion section available in 19 MM & 32 MM thickness.
The structure will be mounted on concrete legs.
All assembling made at site with in one to three day
Free delivery & free assembling at site.
All work & specification as per drawing.

152, Narayan Dhuru Street, 3rd Floor, Mumbai - 400003, Maharashtra, India.
Tel : 23438467 / 23425193 / 23452097 Fax :  022 - 23402486
E-mail :

S - 30, Yashwant Palace, 
Chanakyapuri , New Delhi - 110 021
Phone : (+91) 11-24103031, 26874189 
Mobile :9873170891, 9873160891, 9873160892 
Fax No. : 91- 11 - 41864243, 26880365 
E-mail : 
Website :

Flooring Options in Kerala

In Traditional Kerala Architecture, floors have always been areas for experiments. From a traditionally unique practice of using cow dung to polish our floors, to creating special flooring mixtures with egg-whites and coconut paste our floors have evolved in the quest to create surfaces that are sturdy and smooth.
A few decades earlier, we had red-oxide floors and mosaic (terrazo) floors ruling the market for residential floors. Now, the trend has shifted to marble, granite, vitrified tiles, laminated tiles, toughened glass, wood panels etc so as to enhance the aesthetics and durability of our floors.
Numerous options are available when you choose the flooring material for your dream home and you should plan well when you approach this stage of your house construction. To know what materials are to be used for each portion of the house, you need to know the characteristics of different flooring materials- the price, durability, maintenance features, local availabilty, advantages and disadvantages.

This is an area that has a wide range in terms of cost of construction- about Rs.15 per sqft as in the case of clay (terracotta) tiles, to about Rs.2000 per sqft as in the case of glass floors.
Currently, the most favoured and fast-moving flooring materials are different kinds of floor tiles. Cost-effectiveness, durability, wide range of selection, ease in laying and maintaining etc are the characters that make floor tiles the top choice in flooring. They are of various types- with varying properties.

This week, on our blog, we start a 9-article series on suitable flooring materials for Kerala Homes-
1- Vitrified tiles
2- Ceramic Tiles
3- Wood Flooring
4- Laminated Wood Flooring
5- Marble Flooring
6- Granite Flooring
7- Vinyl Flooring
8- Glass Flooring
9- Terracotta Flooring
10- Red Oxide Flooring

Vitrified Tiles-

Vitrified tiles are baked in very high temperatures, absorb very little moisture and do not stain easily. The surface is very smooth and shiny as they are well polished and they are available in many patterns and prices.
As they can be bend at the edges, vitrified tiles are very suitable for staircases. The price ranges from Rs.40 per sqft to Rs.260 per sqft. The choices in pattern are virtually limitless. The labour cost for laying the tiles would be Rs.11- 13 per tile.
The main disadvantage is that vitrified tiles tend to be slippery, especially when the floor is wet. They are not environment-friendly either.
Tiling is best performed toward the end stages of construction, so as to prevent damages and staining. Acid-wash can be done to resist staining.

More links on Flooring Options-

Kerala Material Suppliers

Adorn Enterprises
S.R.M. Rd Enk North-682018. 

Phone: 0484-2405801

Concord Enterprises
Peringatt Bldg SK Rd-682016. 

Phone: 0484-2367229

Decor Point
A1 PK Bldg Nr Malabar Gate Ram Mohan Rd Chithavalappu Calicut-673004.

Phone: 0495-2254371

Dream Decors
Contact: Ist Flr Mavelil Cplx Manorama Jn-682036. 
Phone: 0484-2318293

Friends Industries
Jawaharlal Nehru International Stadium Complex Kaloor-682017. 

Phone: 0484-3096695

FX Info Technologies Ltd
40/906 3rd Flr Nedumchalil Chambers Mullassery Cnl Rd-682011. 

Phone: 0484-2371850

Gee Tee Trading Company
Opp Municipal Office Kalamassery-682033. 

Phone: 0484-2542748

Kalathiveettil Wood Industries
Contact: JOHN
26/585-A St Johns Church Rd-682013. 

Phone: 0484-2663467

M M Trading Company
Contact: JOS
36/826-A Nedungadan Cplx Lisie Hosp Rd-682018. 

Phone: 0484-2403506

Natura Fibretech Pvt Ltd
29/1459 Gokul Nivas Lakshmi Dairy Campus Vyttila-682019. 

Phone: 0484-2302346

Kerala Building Rules- Rainwater Harvesting


109A.  Rooftop Rain Water Harvesting Arrangements.-

(1) Unless otherwise stipulated specifically in a town Planning Scheme,  workable rooftop rainwater harvesting arrangements shall be provided as an integral part of all new building constructions for the following occupancies, namely:-
i) Group A1- Residential (with floor area of 100 sq.m or more and plot area of 200 sq.m or more)
ii) Group A2- Special Residential
iii) Group B- Educational;
iv) Group C- Medical/Hospital
v) Group D- Assembly
vi) Group E- Office/Business
vii) Group G1 and Group G2 Industrial (only for workshops, assembly plants, laboratories, dry cleaning plants, power plants, Gas plants refineries, diaries food processing units and any other occupancies notified by the Government from time to time) viii) Group1(1)  Hazardous (Automobile wash stall, automobile Service Stations, Service Garages with repairing facilities and any other occupancies notified by the Government from time to time);
Provided that the floor area to be considered  shall be the total floor area in all floors:
Provided further that, the rainwater harvesting arrangement is not mandatory for thatched
roofed buildings.

2)  The components of workable rooftop rainwater harvesting arrangement as stipulated
in Sub-rule (1) above, shall include:
i) Roof catchment area
ii) Roof gutters
iii) Down pipe and first flush pipe arrangement
iv) Filter unit and
v) Storage tank with provision for drawing water and spillover

3)  The minimum capacity of the storage rank  as stipulated in Sub-rule (2) (v) of the
rooftop rainwater harvesting arrangement shall be at the rate given below:
Group A1- 25 litres/Sq.m
Group A2- 25litres/sq.m
Group B- 50 litres/Sq.m
Group C- 50 litres/Sq.m
Group D- 50 litres/Sqm
Group E- 50 litres/Sq.m
Group F- Nil
Group G1 and Group G2- 50 litres/Sq.m
Group H- 25 litres/Sq.m
Group I- Nil

4)  The municipality shall enforce workable artificial ground water recharging arrangements as an integral part of all new building constructions through collection of roof top rainwater.

5)  The component of workable artificial ground water recharging arrangements as stipulated in sub rule (4) above, shall include:
i) Roof catchment area
ii) Roof gutters
iii) Down pipe
iv) Filter unit
v) Recharge well/percolation pit

6)  Wherever rooftop rainwater harvesting arrangements as stipulated in sub rules (1) to (3) above are provided, additional arrangements for carrying the spill over water from storage tank to recharge well or percolation pit need only be provided

7) The owner(s)/occupier(s) shall maintain the rooftop rainwater harvesting arrangements and artificial ground water recharge arrangements in healthy working condition

8)  The Municipality may, in exceptional cases such as water logging or impermeable subsoil conditions to considerable depths, exempt construction from the mandatory groundwater recharging arrangements.

മഴവെള്ള സംഭരണികള്‍

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Malayalam Article on Car Porch

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Driveway Design

The Driveway is the area that leads from the Entrance Gate of your residence to your doorsteps. It will be used for driving the vehicle up to the Car Porch or for walking towards the house.
Being an integral part of your frontyard design, the layout and material selection for driveways demand considerable attantion. Driveway paving materials fall into two main categories: solid-surface (i.e., smooth, seamless, even surfaces) and aggregate-surface. The most popular options lie in the first category, led by asphalt and concrete. Aggregate-surface driveway paving materials include gravel and crushed stone.
Driveway pavers lie somewhere in between these two main categories. Although they are individual components pieced together to form a whole, some types of driveway pavers can, if laid properly, form an almost seamless even surface.
The Pros and Cons of the following Driveway materials are discussed below-
Cobblestone Pavers
Asphalt Paving
Concrete Driveways
Tar and Chip Driveways
Crushed Gravel Driveways
Pros of Cobblestones and Other Driveway Pavers:
Variety in size and design.
A look that says, "Quality!" Durability.
Ease of repair.
Cons of Cobblestones and Other Driveway Pavers:

Driveway pavers are varied in size and design, ranging from large hexagonal driveway pavers to small rectangular brick driveway pavers and cobblestones. While concrete and asphalt surfaces can be made to mimic the look of driveway pavers, you know it's not the real thing. Authenticity is important to some people. For instance, if creating an "Old World" feel is one of your landscaping goals, there may be no substitute for cobblestone. If you own a brick house, brick driveway pavers will tie the landscape in nicely with your house.
Driveway pavers are also durable. Cobblestones in particular are practically synonymous with longevity. Even when they do break or become dislodged, repair is simple enough, since driveway pavers are individual units (unlike concrete or asphalt surfaces). They can be replaced individually, so that you're not faced with the prospect of repairing a whole driveway.
But one drawback cobblestones have is that it's difficult to remove dirt from them, since, unlike other driveway pavers, they form an uneven surface (indeed, the uneven surface is part of their Old World charm). They also come at a rather steep price: driveway pavers, especially cobblestone, are more expensive than the other materials considered here.
Pros of Asphalt Paving:
Less prone to frost heaves than concrete.
Ease of dirt removal.
Decorative options.
Unlike concrete, can be relayered.
Cheaper than concrete.
Cons of Asphalt Paving:
It is fairly common knowledge that concrete driveways can be stamped and colored to enhance their appearance, but some may be surprised to learn that pattern-stamping and coloring are also options for asphalt paving.
Where winters are severe, two issues come to mind for driveways: ease of dirt removal and susceptibility to cracking from frost heaves. Both concrete and asphalt paving rate well on the former, while the relative flexibility of asphalt paving allows it to outperform concrete on the latter. It is also significant that, should such damage occur, asphalt paving can be relayered (reducing repair expenses), while concrete cannot.
Like concrete, asphalt paving needs to be resealed frequently if it is to last long, so maintenance is a consideration.
Pros of Concrete Driveways:
Decorative options.
Ease of dirt removal.
Where winters are not severe, outlasts asphalt paving.
Cons of Concrete Driveways:
More expensive than asphalt paving.
Unlike asphalt paving, can't be relayered.
Concrete driveways stain easily, and the stains are tough to remove.
The look of concrete driveways can be enhanced through pattern-stamping and coloring. Unfortunately, their appearance is easily marred by stains -- which are almost inevitable on a surface used by automobiles. Oil stains, which also plague asphalt paving, are difficult to remove. But concrete driveways are often lighter in color than their asphalt counterparts, making the stains more noticeable.
If winter is on your mind, asphalt surfaces perform better in areas with severe winters than concrete driveways. For while dirt removal is easy on both surfaces, concrete driveways are more likely to crack due to the freezing/thawing cycle. In addition, the This Old House Web site notes that unlike asphalt paving, concrete driveways cannot simply be relayered once damaged. Both concrete driveways and asphalt paving need to be sealed frequently, so maintenance is a consideration.
Where winters are not severe, concrete driveways last longer than asphalt paving. But you'll pay for it, as concrete driveways are the more expensive of the two.
Pros of Tar and Chip Driveways:
Cheaper than asphalt.
Low-maintenance (occasionally replace displaced stones).
The rough surface potentially affords good traction.
Cons of Tar and Chip Driveways:
Difficult to find contractors for installation.
Snow removal is more problematic than for concrete or asphalt.
Here's how tar and chip driveways (or "Macadam") are constructed:
Hot tar is applied to a gravel base. So much for the "tar" part. What about the "chip" part? Well, while the tar is still piping hot, stone chips are thrown on top, so that they can adhere to the tar. Since a major selling point of tar and chip driveways is their looks, people usually make sure the stone chips are pretty, not just any old stone chips. For instance, you might want stones that are a particular color. After the stone chips are laid on top of the tar, a steamroller presses them in firmly.
Besides their splendid appearance, tar and chip driveways are less expensive than asphalt, nor do they have to be sealed, thus cutting down on your yard maintenance.
Tar and chip driveways afford good traction, since the surface layer is composed of individual stones. So rather than having a smooth and potentially slick surface like asphalt, the surface of tar and chip driveways is rough. But the same characteristic that gives these surfaces traction also makes them more difficult to plow and shovel: namely, all those individual little stones sticking up.
Pros of Crushed Gravel Driveways:
Cost (all else being the same).
Reduction in frost heaves in cold climates.
Less repair, since there's no "paved" surface to break.
For the same reason, less maintenance.
Cons of Crushed Gravel Driveways:
Dirt-removal is a bit more difficult.
Ruts can form relatively quickly, marring the appearance.
Relatively dirty.
Some (but by no means all!) of the pros and cons discussed on this page also apply to other driveways similar to crushed gravel driveways; for instance, driveways composed of small stones, crushed seashells or cinder (although none of these are as dirty as crushed gravel driveways, and all are more attractive). Note also that not all crushed gravel driveways will perform the same way, due to the fact that their compositions will vary (how the material is screened, etc.).
Because crushed gravel driveways are inexpensive, they are often the driveway of choice in rural areas. Homeowners often have more crushed gravel added periodically as ruts form and crushed gravel is lost, but that's easy enough: you just have another load of crushed gravel dumped and spread (although it's just a temporary fix).
With crushed gravel driveways, a base with good drainage is important, so make sure the individual installing your crushed gravel driveway pays attention to it, or you could be in for problems. Nonetheless, crushed gravel driveways do generally require less repair or maintenance jobs for you. There will be no sealing, no patching, no cleaning, because there isn't any hard surface that can be damaged or stained.
As mentioned above, crushed gravel driveways are designed to shed water.
More links on Driveway Design-


Ar Shahdad Karim B Arch FIIA, graduated with a Bachelor of Architecture degree from College of Engineering, Trivandrum (CET), University of Kerala, took his Post Graduation in Construction Management from National Institute of Construction Management and Research (NICMAR), Pune and a Diploma in Project Management from TAFE, Australia.