For today’s soon-to-be homeowner, there are basically two distinct options when it comes to framing a house: metal or wood. Both have advantages and disadvantages, but are you aware of what they are? Some might surprise you.
At Steve Allen Construction in Ocala, FL, we do framing for residential and commercial buildings. We specialize in wood framing, but that doesn’t mean we don’t know a thing or two about metal framing as well. In this article, we give you the facts on framing a home.
It might surprise you to know that metal studs are much lighter than wood studs, so as far as transportation is concerned, metal is actually the more convenient material to move from place to place. When it comes to actually working with the material though, metal studs become a bit more difficult. It is much harder to cut metal than lumber, not to mention a louder and more dangerous process. We also find that metal studs don’t come in nearly the same variety as wood studs, so finding metal studs for custom built homes with unusual dimensions becomes tricky.
Strength and Stability
Contrary to popular belief, wood is actually sturdier than most metal studs when it comes to building a home. Steel studs can’t be used to build load bearing walls, unless they are specialty heavy duty commercial-grade studs that must be specially ordered. Many contractors advise against hanging anything heavy, such as cabinets, from steel stud walls. Wood is strong and sturdy, but it is also very flexible, making it a more forgiving material to work with.
Both metal and wood studs have positives and negatives when it comes to being environmentally friendly. Metal is great because as long as it doesn’t rust, it can be used indefinitely. But, when metal is recycled, it is a costly process that ends up creating residues that are difficult to treat. Wood, on the other hand, is a renewable resource and we’re becoming much better about maintaining forests used for lumber. On the downside, although wood is biodegradable, it takes a long time to do so and ends up taking up space in landfills anyway.
Ease of Installation
In general, metal studs tend to be easier to install than wood studs. This is because they are a lighter weight and are attached with screws so they can be easily moved if any mistakes are made. Wood stud insulation involves knowledge of more heavy-duty tools and can be more difficult to move once set in place. Luckily, at Steve Allen Construction, we have over 35 years experience with wood framing, so we know how to avoid the difficulties associated with wood studs.
Do you have other questions about metal or wood studs? Interested in learning more about framing carpentry? Let us know! Reach out to us on our contact form or by giving us a call. You can also join us on social to continue the conversation.
— Steve Allen Inc. (@SteveAllenOcala) September 23, 2014