Which Frames Are Better: Wood or Steel?
When planning your new residential, commercial or agricultural construction project, you have a number of options for materials. When it comes to building frames, the most common choice you’ll face is between wood and steel. Wood frames have been used for centuries and are often viewed as the tried-and-true material for a long-standing building. However, steel frames are becoming increasingly popular with builders and owners alike, as steel offers a variety of benefits.
If you need to choose between wood or steel building construction in Miami County, IN, it’s important that you understand the differences between the framing types and which type will work better for your construction project. In the end, steel appears to be the dominant framing material.
Wood has been known to withstand a lot of pressure over time and to usually hold up against the elements. However, wood frames are also known to buckle under high winds during hurricanes or tornadoes and are susceptible to earthquakes. Fires also pose a great risk to wood framed buildings, as wood can catch fire easily and spread damage quickly.
Additionally, wood is extremely susceptible to termites and other pests, which can burrow into and damage the structure of your building. Moisture also poses a problem; wood absorbs water and can expand and contract, causing warping or cracks in the frame.
Steel, though, is not as susceptible to these types of problems. Pests and fire are not problems at all, and steel frames tend to hold up very well against high winds, earthquakes and other elemental damage. However, steel can rust after exposure to moisture, causing frame damage. Certain protective coatings can help combat this. Steel building construction in Miami County, IN will ultimately result in a more durable and less damage-prone structure.
These two materials also differ in sustainability drawbacks and benefits. Using wood frames contributes to deforestation and the wood cannot be recycled after use. Steel is typically made of recycled products and can be completely recycled after demolition. Additionally, wood has a much higher rate of construction waste than steel, due to the imperfections of nature.
In terms of heat transfer, wood is better at insulating buildings. Steel transfers heat more easily and is less energy efficient.
Construction time also matters a lot when deciding between wood and steel frames. Oftentimes, wood beams need to be measured, cut and drilled perfectly by experienced laborers on site, resulting in higher labor costs. Steel frames can often be pre-constructed at a manufacturer, which can save labor time and costs.
Choose steel building construction in Miami County, IN
Steel frames ultimately have a number of advantages over wooden frames. They withstand the elements and are more resistant to damage, they are recyclable and made from post-consumer products and can save you money from high construction time. This is not to say that steel is the best option in every circumstance; however, it is a great choice for projects needing high durability and low maintenance.
If you have a need for steel building construction in Miami County, IN, contact K. Graber Construction LLC. For over 15 years, we have been your experts in commercial, residential and agricultural construction jobs. We can handle virtually all of your construction needs, so give us a call today to start your project!