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Where Is Steel Frame Construction Used

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  • Steel Building Construction, Steel Frame Structures, Steel Fabrication
  • Posted date:
  • 02-05-2022
Where Is Steel Frame Construction Used

Where is steel framing used in construction? We discuss the types of steel building construction used and outline its advantages.

Where Steel Frame Structures are used

Structural steelwork regularly forms the skeleton frame of a building consisting of beams and columns in a rectilinear grid. The building is then constructed using this strong skeleton frame.

Steel construction is often used in high-rise, industrial, residential, temporary, and warehouse buildings. Steel frames are used in high-rise buildings because they need a speedy construction with materials that are strong and lightweight.

Industrial and warehouse buildings also use steel frameworks because they need to utilise the alloy's ability to create large spaces on a budget. Light-gauge steel frames can be used in residential buildings to protect tenants from extreme weather conditions and prevent fire from spreading.

Finally, steel frames make great temporary structures such as garages, showrooms, storage, and workshops because they are equally quick to set up as to remove.

Types of Steel Building Construction

Steel construction is also known as steel fabrication, as steel is manufactured using prefabrication methods for quicker results.

There are several types of steel building construction, including conventional steel, bolted steel, and light gauge steel.

Conventional Steel Fabrication

Professional steel fabricators cut steel to specific lengths in workshops or construction sites and weld these lengths together to make the final structure. It is a labour-intensive method that provides better working conditions and reduces time than other types of steel building construction.

No temporary formwork needs to be pitched and dismantled after fitting conventional steel, meaning that there is no product waste or time wasted.

Conventional steel is perfect for buildings that have more than two stories because there is flexibility to add HVAC appliances, add cranes to the structure, change plumbing lines, change process equipment lines, modify sprinklers, and rearrange production floor plans.

Bolted Steel Construction

Bolted steel construction is a common structure consisting of fasteners, joints, and screws.  A bolt is secured with screw threads on the opposing side and connects steel components throughout the steel skeleton. The main advantage of using bolted steel construction is that it can be used straight after being bolted, whereas concrete fixtures would require several days to cure before being safe to use.

Examples of bolted steel construction are pre-engineered buildings that have been designed, fabricated, shipped, and pitched by one company. When steel components have been finished and painted, they are simply shipped to the construction site and bolted into place.

The bulk of fabrication is done in workshops using ideal machinery, lighting, and working conditions. The components are specifically designed to fit the size of the trailer or truck they will be shipped in for more efficient transport.

Light Gauge Steel Construction

If you are looking to construct residential or small buildings, you should consider using light gauge steel. Light gauge steel frames can come in thin sheets of 1-3mm perfect for being used for curtain walls, floor joists, load-bearing exterior walls, non-load-bearing interior walls, and roof trusses.

They are often compared to wood-framed construction because the sections are formed and shaped at cool temperatures to make construction processes smoother and results stronger. In contrast to bulky structural steel and wood, light gauge steel construction does not deteriorate.

Understanding Steel Frame Construction

Please look at the points below to fully understand the advantages and disadvantages of using steel frame construction in your next building project.

Steel frame construction produces less scrap and waste than other materials because steel frames are digitally modelled before fabrication. They benefit the environment by being recycled after the first building project.

Structural steel can be used many times and put under all kinds of pressures and stresses without compromising its ductility, strength, or malleability. Similarly, structural steel components such as beams and columns can be recycled multiple times to drastically reduce our collective environmental impact.

Steel frame construction is used for simple and large structures, like agricultural, high-rise, warehouse, and garage buildings. It is currently used for developing offices, factories, residential dwellings, and other public buildings.

There are many advantages to steel frame construction including affordability, durability, and sustainability. Steel frame construction can be quickly fabricated and transported, requires the least amount of onsite labour, and reduces the impact of external variables that could delay a construction project.

These steel frame constructions have lower financing costs, less frequent interest payments, and faster payback because the building will be used as soon as possible. However, there are also a few disadvantages to constructing steel frames for your building project.

These disadvantages include thermal conductivity, reduced flexibility, and requiring support from other materials.

Steel-framed buildings do not retain heat within a building due to steel's property of efficiently conducting heat. Insulation measures must be put in place to combat the lack of energy retention in the insulation values of surrounding walls.

Wooden components can have their size cut down and position adjusted, whereas the measurements of steel components must be precisely calculated in advance and placed in specific slots. If it turns out that the measurements of the steel framework are incorrect, there is a delay in the building project's schedule as the steel components will need to be transported back to the factory to get re-cut.

Steel frame construction has been argued by some building companies that steel frame construction must be supported by drywall, insulation, heating, or wooden components to support the build and hinder steel's thermal conductivity.

Many construction companies do not use steel frame construction because of the extra time it takes to order all the necessary materials. Other construction companies argue that combining steel with other materials is just as effective and quick as using steel by itself because other materials can be adjusted on-site.

On the other hand, steel-framed buildings have proven to be more self-supporting than other materials due to their high strength to weight ratio. They are ideal for constructing huge open interiors in warehouses and industrial buildings because they do not require pillars, columns, or beams to support them.

Why Choose Steel Frame Construction?

If you're in the planning stages of a building project, you may want help deciding which steel frame construction to choose. Let us help with the following content that discusses the advantages of steel frame construction. Compared to brick, concrete, and wooden constructions, choosing structural steel fabrication can increase the sturdy and cost-effective qualities of your project. However, other materials' qualities are usually needed to create a completely durable build.

There are also many more joining methods for steel frame construction, such as bolting, riveting, and welding.  Steel frame construction is relatively quick to build, with lots of work being done at the factory or workshop and shipped to the construction site. It is safer to use steel because less on-site labour means fewer workers and fewer accidents. You should choose steel frame construction for its strength. It is flexible and can be moulded into any shape and clad with any material.


The components of structural steel are lighter and stronger than wood or concrete which are more weight-bearing.  Fabrication of steel components is approximately half as light as the wooden equivalent. While steel's higher density than wood and concrete means that steel will be heavier, steel can hold more load than the same measurements of a wooden or concrete frame. Steel frame construction allows for easy fabrication for all sorts of project requirements.

Fabricating steel studs in a variety of sizes allows engineers to customise steel studs to bear specific loads in all types and sizes of buildings.  Additionally, steel lasts longer than concrete and wood, meaning that these foundations will last the building owner many years to come. They are also fire-resistant, meaning that a building made from steel frames has a reduced risk of the presence and spreading of fire.

This resistance can be increased using special flame-retardant coatings of fire-resistant material that prevent the steel from losing any integrity in a fire.

Steel frame construction is pest and insect resistant, boasting an immunity to insects and mammals that wooden framework cannot offer. Structural steel is moisture resistant and offers strong protection against heavy weather and earthquake forces. 

Depending on the steel's carbon content, you may need to spread a hot zinc coating to enhance the rust resistance. It is important to consider galvanising steel components with this coating to prevent exposure to weather and avoid corrosion.

Galvanised steel is protected and lives longer because the zinc coating corrodes very slowly and has more electronegativity, which means that the zinc will corrode instead of the steel.


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