June 28, 2021

Steel Framing Vs. Wood Deck Framing


Steel Framing is Safer than Wood

Here’s a fact: wood rots. You can extend the life with diligent maintenance and upkeep, but eventually you’re going to be dealing with soft, structurally compromised wood in your framing. This can be dangerous in any situation, but it’s particularly scary in commercial applications.

The heavy foot traffic of commercial spaces can expedite the wear and tear on decking components—boards and frame—and if the project is several stories up, doesn’t it make sense to trust something like solid steel over degradable wood?

Steel Is a More Sustainable Product Than Wood

If you’re concerned about deforestation or the environmental impact of using real lumber in your decking, a steel frame could be a great alternative for you. Steel is one of the most recycled materials on the planet, and beyond that, recycling it in no way degrades its quality. This makes the material uniquely sustainable.


steel framing wood deck framing

Benefits of Steel Framing

  • Looks and installs like wood
  • Builds flat, stays flat!
  • Provides greater spans between supports
  • Works with any type or brand of decking, including composite, PVC, aluminum, tile, wood and tropical hardwoods
  • Designed for low-maintenance, durability, ease of installation and safety
  • A noncombustible material, resistant to fire and invulnerable to rotting, warping, splitting and pesky insect damage
  • Unlike wood boards, there is no need to soak steel with insecticide and fungicide
  • Steel is recycled and recyclable, making it more sustainable than wood

Wood Deck

Cons

  • Lifespan – Wood decks have an average of 15-20 years life span,if built properly. Even then it will warp, shrink & splinter over time.
  • Durability – Wood is prone to water and will rot,fade & mold if not maintained properly.
  • Unsustainable Product – The production of wood material puts a strain on our world’s forest. We can not plant and grow trees as fast as we use them.
  • High-Maintenance – Wood needs to be sand,stained,sealed often and cleaned yearly. All this adds to the overall cost of the product in the long run.
  • NO WARRANTY – Because of wood’s natural properties, it can not be warrantied. Once something is damaged it is up to you to pay for new materials.
  • Cost – As of 2020 wood prices have gone up 200%!Treated wood is now comparable to a low grade composite.

Steel Is a Low-Maintenance Product

Steel is a long-lasting product, but the best thing about that is it’s long-lasting without needing frequent maintenance or upkeep. After you install it, you get all the benefits of steel for years to come without having to go through the hassle of annual painting, sealing, staining, or rigorous cleaning.

steel framing wood deck framing

Your Deck Boards Won’t Outlast Your Frame!

As composite decking becomes increasingly popular, homeowners are experiencing a new problem. Their decking boards are now outlasting the deck frame itself. This leads to a less-than-ideal situation where you have to dismantle an entire deck just to replace the frame underneath, even though your boards are as structurally sound and aesthetically pleasing as the day you installed them.

To avoid this problem, homeowners are increasingly turning to steel deck framing systems that are liable to last as long as the decking boards atop them. Even in regions like Washington, DC; Virginia; and Maryland, which experience extreme weather throughout the year, steel won’t rot, crown, twist, or warp. This helps ensure the foundation of your deck doesn’t become compromised, even after years of exposure.