As humanity began to form civilisations, homes were first built with materials like stone, timber and clay. In the olden times, these materials were abundantly available and suited the framework or the foundation of a house the best. As things kept changing, houses started being built with concrete and bricks. You must have seen this in movies that are based on olden times. Until steel was discovered by man, the most popular material used for building was wood. There were no steel suppliers in Sydney, just good old wood!
Soon, the industrial revolution dawned upon humanity and brought about many changes. This revolution explored technological advancements, innovations, products and different methods. Materials like steel and cement were discovered, which changed the world of architecture. Now, all the buildings you see around you are made of steel, cement and wood!
When you’re building a structure, it needs to be sturdy. Otherwise, it is just too dangerous. The two materials relied upon in the field of architecture are wood and steel. When it comes to these two materials (steel and wood), steel is more sturdy and resilient. Because of that, you can rely on steel for its long-lasting performance. On the other hand, wood is easier to work with as building any structure with wood is much faster. So the question arises, which is better: wood or steel?
Let’s explore what works best when constructing a house:
The first thought of eco-friendly materials makes you think of trees and plants. So if we’re thinking according to that idea, wood is obviously eco-friendly,right? This is where things change. You see, wood was available abundantly in the past. Although due to increasing population and continuous botching down of trees, wood is available but not as abundantly as before.
Steel, on the other hand, is regarded as a more eco-friendly material that can be reused and recycled over and over again. Steel structures are also much lighter than cement, and as they are less extensive for foundations, it reduces the building’s environmental impact! Steel is more convenient, and lighter, and the fuel compensation is far less compared to wood and steel.
- Strength And Durability
Steel is a metal regarded to be one of the strongest and thus is used in the construction field. Steel is tensile, and has huge compressive and flexural strength. When steel wall frames are used for any building, one can rest assured that it is the strongest and the lightest. Steel is rust-free, and can withstand harsh weather conditions while also maintaining the framework, which is not as easy for wood frames! Here are some comparisons:
- Steel does not rot, mould, warp, crack or split like wood.
- Wood is vulnerable to best while steel is not.
- Temperature and season changes don’t affect steel, unlike wood.
- Wood contracts and expands with high moisture content, steel does not.
- Wood is flammable and combustible, unlike steel.
For both commercial and residential buildings, steel is an exceptional contender as a material since it can be molded into different shapes, whatever the construction plan may require. Steel is always the first choice for a majority of construction projects because of obvious reasons. Let’s not forget how the versatility of steel helps in different structures such as halls, airports, auditoriums, indoor areas, huge doors, terminal buildings, warehouses, etc.
The resistance capacity of steel buildings is ridiculous. Ridiculous in a good way! One good part about using steel for building purposes is that it requires much less labor hence cutting down on labor costs. Wood costs a good amount of labor. For western countries where labor costs are pretty high, steel helps save money, time and effort while also providing the best results.
Flexibility is one benefit enjoyed by using steel in the world or architecture. It is because steel can be designed or constructed just as per the requirement without any obstructions. Because of this reason, steel can withstand many natural calamities like earthquakes or heavy winds. Wood is more easily prone to damage, collapse and destruction.
Steel is not just used as a building block for commercial construction projects but also for many residential establishments. Why is it used so commonly in residential establishments? Because of its strength and durability that wood can fail to provide for a prolonged period. The cost of lumber is rising exponentially and that’s what has made steel more popular.
Steel is long-lasting, and it can easily stand the test of time but you cannot be so sure when it comes to wood! Labor costs also matter a great deal since wood requires a lot of labor while steel does not. Wood is not preferred much because of this reason.
Wood is one of the strongest contenders when building a house. But when compared to steel, it definitely falls short and has a lot of drawbacks. If you’re looking for a strong and sturdy framework for your house, choose steel!