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Aluminium vs. Steel Frame: Which is the Best Material for Construction?

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Have you ever wondered what makes residences and commercial buildings stand the way they do? The secret behind most constructions is the well-thought framing of metals that are either made by steel or aluminium. Each of these materials has distinct characteristics, which makes them good options for constructing buildings. If you are torn between getting an aluminium or steel frame, read on to help you decide which one to use for developing your project.

Durability 

When it comes to construction work, the durability of the materials being used is the primary consideration. It will be a waste if you spend all that money only for the building to crumble within years. 

In this aspect, steel is the clear winner. One of the reasons for this advantage is because steel takes time to corrode. Stainless steel is made up of copper, nickel, iron, manganese, and chromium, and is known to be rust-resistant. These raw materials are also non-porous, so there is very little chance for external factors to contribute to its corrosion. 

On the other hand, aluminium can be easily oxidized. When placed in an environment with an extreme base or acidic characteristics, it oxidizes, its surface will turn white, and the structure will start to lose its durability.

Concerning strength, steel is also prized for being unyielding. The higher the amount of carbon, the harder steel becomes. Hard steel frames are resistant to dents and can withstand applications of stress. It would require a massive amount of weight for it to be deformed.

However, the stronger it is, the heavier the steel becomes as well. If you have the equipment to carry heavy materials, it will not be a problem for your construction project. Its weight may be a slight downside, but it should be of little consideration if you want to build something that would last. 

Cost 

The budget is another crucial consideration in any building project. The price of both of these materials fluctuates depending on the supply and demand in the global market. However, most kinds of steels are generally cheaper than aluminium. Some of the cheap yet reliable kinds of steel in the market are stainless steel and mild steel. On the higher end of this spectrum is carbon steel. The price of aluminium alloy often falls somewhere in between stainless steel and carbon steel. 

Formability

Due to the durability of steel, its shape is difficult to manipulate. Conversely, aluminium is very malleable. It is somewhat soft and can easily be cut and remodelled.

It should be noted though, that steel is relatively easier to weld compared to aluminium. As such, it is more convenient to put steel beams together. There are even products in the market that offer pre-fabricated steel formwork, so you do not have to go through the hassle of cutting and reforming them. All you have to do is give the specifications of your building, and the manufacturers will customize steel frames according to your design. Once delivered, all you have to do is to piece them together and let the concrete bind your pre-fabricated steel material.

Without a doubt, steel is a supreme choice for building projects. This material is generally stronger and cheaper than its counterpart. It may not be easy to manipulate, but the first two factors are more important considerations in construction work.

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