Deconstruction: The Science of Building a House

Deconstruction is a television series that bridges the popular do-it-yourself genre and a show where, well, things just get destroyed. The Science Channel tapped Rivet Entertainment to produce a series where viewers, even those without an interest in home construction, can learn something about building and science, and are entertained as well.

Deconstruction digs below the surface of home construction to expose the science behind building materials and techniques. Additional episodes include Science of the Backyard, and House of the Future.

Breaking down the science behind everyday building materials and techniques, host Steve Hanneman looks at how a house is built, why materials are chosen, and what makes each process and procedure special. Many building practices and materials are taken for granted by homeowners and builders, but there is an amazing wealth of experience and science behind how building materials interact and perform like they do, why products are chosen, how they’re installed, and how they protect us from the elements. Deconstruction looks at the fascinating science beneath the surface, tests materials to their limits, and explains confusing concepts in an entertaining way.

Deconstruction takes viewers everywhere from a home construction site in various stages of development to official testing and manufacturing facilities where full-scale tests of a variety of materials are performed.  Engaging host Steve Hanneman uses humor to demystify and explain the technology and science behind the materials that go into constructing a house — everything from why concrete is used in foundations and what rebar is, to why houses are framed with wood, how builders design homes to withstand earthquakes and tornados, and how modern lumber is milled. Steve delves inside the structure, too, explaining the ins and outs of plumbing, electrical wiring, drywall, insulation and more.
Viewers learn about the science that makes a house into a comfortable home, including such facts as why double-paned windows are filled with gas and how wallboard is constructed and why it is used in most new construction today – one of the reasons being fire safety.  The heat of a fire releases water in wallboard’s core in the form of steam, helping to retard the transfer of heat.


  1. Hi, where can I watch or purchase this documentary? Jake, UK.

  2. So does the original content no longer exist? I’ve been scouring the internet for five years trying to find it to no avail. I just want to watch it for personal use.

  3. Apologies, I’m referring to Deconstruction: House of the Future, not this particular video.

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