HHJ Architecture & Construction


The Pros and Cons of Commercial Metal Buildings

While aluminum is the most abundant metal on the planet, steel is the most widely used in commercial construction. Metals have a range of benefits that make them a great choice for any design-build contractor. They can be ideal for various types of buildings, but what makes them so useful? In this guide, we’ll go over some of the pros and cons of commercial metal buildings. Keep reading for more.

Pros of Metal Buildings

Strength and Durability

A general contractor needs to think about various factors when designing a building, and strength and durability are incredibly important. Construction steel is strong and durable. It can take heavy loads with relative ease and stands up well to adverse weather conditions like rain, wind, and snow. Buildings made from concrete or wood typically can’t take nearly as much abuse from the elements, so metal buildings are ideal if you want to build something that will last.

Short Construction Time

Metals like steel and aluminum are lightweight and easy to transport. Components can also be prefabricated with ease, and then transported and installed on-site. Putting these components together is relatively straightforward, which helps keep construction time down. This results in less labor, keeping the overall cost of construction to a minimum.

Environmentally Friendly & Recyclable

Steel structure buildings have minimal impact on stone, sand, and other surrounding materials during construction. There’s also relatively little pollution produced throughout this process. Environmental impact is very important these days, and metal can help keep it down.

Steel is also fully recyclable. This means fewer raw materials are needed, further reducing the carbon footprint of construction.

Cons of Metal Buildings

A commercial contractor should understand that there are also some cons to using metals. They may need to consider other building options based on these characterists.

Poor Heat Resistance

Standard steel has poor heat and fire resistance. If a fire breaks out, a steel building could collapse. Fire-resistant coatings can help a steel building stand up much better to fire. Materials like brick and concrete offer excellent fire resistance. It’s worth noting that it can handle fire better than some other common materials such as wood.

Potential to Rust

Steel can rust when exposed to air, especially if there’s a lot of moisture in it. This can compromise the strength and toughness of the steel. To prevent this, it can be shot blasted and dusted, then coated or galvanized.

Aluminum typically contains no iron, so it doesn’t rust. This can make it a great option when building a commercial space.

Professional Commercial Metal Buildings

Metals offer a range of benefits such as excellent strength, short construction time, and being eco-friendly. These make it a great choice for commercial buildings. It’s important to remember the drawbacks when using it and consider other potential options.

HHJ Architecture and Construction is a design & build firm that has been constructing commercial metal buildings throughout the Northwest for over three decades. Get in touch today to discuss your commercial building project.