Heating the houses in cold climates requires large quantities of heat energy to be spent. The building sector consumes more energy in, the form of heat than other sectors. Therefore, considerable energy savings can be obtained by using natural rocks with low thermal conductivity in insulating the buildings. In this study, the amount of energy conserved by using porous tuff stone in external walls of buildings is calculated. It was shown that considerable energy savings can be achieved by using tuff stone for facing buildings in cold climate zones such as Isparta region. The cost of installing tuff stone panels for facing buildings will be paid back in four years by savings in heat energy. (C) 2005 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.