Building and renovating a home isn’t as easy as calling up your local tradie. Using structural steel for your next home renovation requires the necessary materials and the expertise of a structural engineer to get the job done. That’s because construction of any kind requires holding up some pretty heavy objects. And if you’re planning on removing any structural/load-bearing walls for more open plan areas, you’ll need to install a supporting beam for the load above. Otherwise, everything will come crashing down. Fortunately, structural engineers have access to structural steel to make your construction project a reality. Discover how using structural steel beams for your next home renovation addition will bring your dreams to life.
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Structural Steel use in Home Additions
Structural steel is a manufactured material with isotropic properties, meaning it has the same level of strength everywhere. Because of this, steel has the highest strength-to-weight ratio of any current building material. To prevent structural additions from twisting, warping, shrinking, or buckling; constructors buy steel lintels which can be shaped into a variety of styles, such as curves and corners. Steel is also termite-proof and incredibly resistant to fire and heat. Steel also makes for an excellent insulator, as heat can quickly radiate from steel roofing for a cooler home in hotter climates.
An often overlooked benefit of structural steel houses is their environmental friendliness. The majority of structural steel buildings are made using 100% recyclable steel. Steel Builders, for example, locally source their materials to meet Australian Standards. Furthermore, steel doesn’t require treatment against pests and hazards, reducing the need for toxic chemicals.
Structural Steel in Housing
Structural steel is typically made from pre-galvanised steel that is cut and either roll-formed or pressed into a specific shape. While concrete and timber can be used, steel is often lighter than concrete and easier to handle on-site than timber, thanks to advances in computer technology. Steel fabricators can take on more flexible steel construction, using new technologies like CAD systems which enable much of the labour to be done off-site, making on-site assembly more straightforward.
Starting on a floating concrete slab, homes that require structural steel include the following components:
Homes built with structural steel typically consist of structural support beams spanning the opening in a house made from masonry, otherwise known as lintels. These lintels sit atop the vertical supports on either side of the opening, providing critical structural support to each wall by transferring the load to the foundation. Lintels prevent unnecessary strain from being placed on frames like doorways or windows. Steel lintels are especially useful when loads are heavy, and the openings are wide.
Also referred to as L shaped sections, Unequal or Equal Angles are ideal for use as lintels. One leg sits under the brickwork while the other resists bending over an opening like a doorway or window.
Colloquially referred to as an H Beam, Universal Columns feature a stockier and wider H shape. The vertical middle section is known as the ‘web’, and the horizontal is the ‘flange’.
An optimal choice for structural steel building, as its I shape promotes unidirectional bending parallel to the web. While the horizontal flanges can resist bending movements, the web prevents shear stresses without buckling. The design is also cost-effective, thanks to the limited amount of steel required to produce a universal beam. They can also be used as beam sections where headroom is of concern.
Parallel Flange Channel
Otherwise known as C sections or C channel beams, a Parallel Flange Channel (PFC) is a versatile structural steel component. While standard Steel columns and beams can provide weight-bearing support, a PFC can provide excellent deflection resistance and added strength. And thanks to their narrow design, they offer a flat, flush back surface for mating with other building materials.
Also known as Square Hollow Sections, fabricated columns regularly feature structural steel projects thanks to their balance between strength and functionality. SHS posts feature equal-sided symmetry, making them aesthetically pleasing and more economical for joining and other fabrication processes. Steel Builders offers a range of posts sizes, top and bottom plate configurations online to suit your project requirements.
While it’s not going to replace your smartphone anytime soon, the intelligence behind our SMART Steel is how it’s processed. Unlike most steel fabricators cutting steel by hand, we utilise highly efficient Peddinghaus machinery, cutting processing time in half.
Our machines can simultaneously cut steel to length and drill highly accurate fastener holes that are an oblong shape, saving even more time when it comes to on-site installation. Much better than having to drill holes yourself. Check out our range of SMART Steel below.
- Smart Maxi T-Bar™
- Smart Retain™ Wall Posts
- Smart Hot Rolled Angle™
- Smart R-Bar™
- Smart T-Bar™
- Smart Shelf Angle™
- Smart Flat Bar™
- Smart Lintel™
Creating Smarter Solutions with Steel
As the leading supplier of structural steel for the NSW domestic housing market, Steel Builders are committed to servicing their customer’s requirements, supplying quality products, and, most of all, creating smarter solutions. Steel Builders is the ideal choice for all your structural steel requirements, including lintels, t-bars, adjustable steel posts, drainage products, and bricklayers hardware. Shop online with Steel Builders for speedy and reliable delivery across NSW, in addition to free pickup options. We offer a 24-hour quoting service for domestic housing projects, with accurate lead times and locally sourced materials.
If you require more complex fabrication, go to our quote page and upload your engineering and architectural plans for a detailed estimate. Or, if you have shop drawings or detailed sketches of your post requirements, please upload them for a quote. Steel Builders sell a more comprehensive range of structural steel through our factory, so if what you need is not here, please contact us, and we will be able to assist you with your requirements.
Get a quote today for a complete package from CAD drafted shop drawings through to painting, galvanising and site installation if required.