Steel building framing is used extensively in almost every industry, primarily due to the multiple advantages that steel framing brings. Yet, as with everything else, there are some disadvantages of steel framing to using a steel deck and steel stud framing in construction.

Additional Cost of Fireproofing

Steel members are incombustible, although their strength is greatly diminished at fire temperatures. Creep becomes much more noticeable at around 400oC. Creep is described as long-term plastic deformation under a steady load. This causes significant deflections/deformations in the members, causing the other members to experience stress or perhaps collapse. Steel is a great heat conductor and may transport enough heat from a burning compartment of a building to spark fires in other areas of the building. To adequately fireproof the building, further funds are required.

Occurrence of Buckling

Steel sections are typically made up of a series of thin plates. Furthermore, the overall dimensions of steel members are less than those of reinforced concrete members. When these skinny members are compressed, they are more prone to buckling. Buckling is a member collapse produced by rapid, significant bending generated by critical compressive stress. When used for columns, steel can be expensive because a lot of material is required to reinforce the columns against buckling.

Aesthetic Faults

Steel is favored architecturally for some types of buildings. On the other hand, steel structures without false ceilings and cladding are deemed to have a poor aesthetic aspect in the majority of residential and office buildings. Such systems will incur high costs to improve their appearance. Cladding is a metal, plastic, or wood covering applied to the surface of a structural part to encapsulate it completely. The cladding protects the member while also improving its look.

Corrosion and Costs

Most steels corrode when exposed to air and water. This necessitates additional expense and special care. Weathering steels in stable structure applications helps to reduce this cost. For example, steel can lose 1 to 1.5 mm of thickness each year if not properly maintained. Such structures can lose up to 35% of their weight over their stated life and fail under external loads.

Decrease in Availability

Steel is not widely available in some countries, and its initial cost is compared to other structural materials. This is the most critical element contributing to reducing steel construction in these countries.


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