When it comes to the framing of your house, there are two most common options; that is framing using wood and framing using steel. Of course, every customer has his/her own preference in this sector. However, one of the two options has more benefits and will give you better results than the other. Whenever the word framing comes up, the first thing you think about is wood, because it does the best at that. Though it has a few disadvantages, its advantages seem to be of much more weight. So, here are the top benefits of wood framing over steel framing.
1. Need for adequate insulation
Wood is not a natural conductor, unlike steel. During the cold seasons, the wood frames will remain constant in temperature, while the steel will be extremely cold. This can only be prevented by using a lot of insulation on the steel to reduce its conductivity. Otherwise, your heating/cooling energy usage will be extremely high. Either way, you will spend much more than you would have on wood framing.
2. Wide range of styles and profiles
Unlike steel, wood or rather lumber is available in many styles and profiles. The likes of Doug-fir and SPF can be shaped and sized to several dimensions. Their versatility also allows them to either be processed to have a smooth or rough texture. Additionally, the natural appearance of wood is a significant enhancement to their aesthetic value. Having different profiles, wood can be customized and styled to different patterns to bring a personalized look to your house. This is not possible, or easy with steel.
Cost is a major factor and an essential determinant of certain purchases over others. It also applies in this case, and as expected, steel is way more expensive, both in terms of short term and long term costs. Constructing a house using metal will require special expertise, special tools, and materials as well as electrical boxes. All these are quite costly and so are the recurrent maintenance and hidden costs like high heating/cooling energy costs.
Wood framing, on the other hand, is quite affordable and can be installed using common woodwork tools and materials. It’s heating/cooling energy cost is also reasonable, and installation is easy, hence, reduced expense on labor.
4. Resistance to rust
While steel cannot rot, it is prone to rust which is an even bigger problem. When exposed to water or major leaks for long, the metal will start rusting which will be a huge blow on its stability. This, therefore, calls for frequent treatments which is yet another added cost.
5. Availability and commonality
Framing lumber is very common among homeowners and constructors. They are also available in both low profile local retail shops as well as the highly reputable lumber stores. Their commonness also means most contractors are familiar with the installation, and therefore, you have a range of contractors to choose from. This significantly reduces the cost of labor.
Besides the above mentioned top benefits of wood framing, there are many other reasons why wood is the better choice over steel as far as framing your house is concerned.