Wood Frame vs Steel Frame Garden Buildings

Wood Frame vs Steel Frame Garden Buildings

Which material is best for building a garden room frame? Wood or Steel? Although it comes down to personal preference, this post talks about the reason we’ve transitioned to light steel construction and the benefits it passes on to our customers. 

What is light steel framing?

Light steel framing is a high quality, accurate, engineered product.

Why don't house builders use it?

They do, light steel framing systems are certified in accordance with NHBC Standards Chapter 6.10.

What are the benefits?

Durability: Steel is a denser material than timber, making it up to 25 times stronger. Unlike timber, it’s moisture resistant which means it isn’t prone to rot or damage from the elements. The framing system we use is likely to outlive any of the other natural components we use on our garden rooms and can last up to 250 years! Light steel framed construction provides a robust structure that satisfies the building regulation requirement for avoidance of disproportionate collapse. 

Cost: Although the price of steel is slightly more than timber, there are efficiencies to be gained in onsite labour costs. The frames are shipped to site in panels and assembled into a finished frame within a few hours of delivery, reducing the chance of human error as all panels are machined.

Technology: Our garden rooms are designed with the support of our suppliers structural engineers and the latest CAD technology. CAD software is able to analyse loads, deflections and other forces to ensure best engineering practices are adhered to. Our steel frames are therefore less likely to suffer from any shrinkage which ensures doors don’t stick in hot weather and plastered walls don’t crack. 

Time: All of our frames structural elements can be very precisely fabricated to tight tolerances before delivery to site, facilitating rapid and waste-free assembly. The speed of construction using steel is up to 50% faster than our previous builds that were constructed in timber. We’ve knocked 3-days of an average project meaning less disruption and we can hand over the keys quicker! 

Environmentally Friendly: Our steel frames take up less space and are 30% lighter than timber, therefore we produce less CO2 during transportation. Unlike timber, aluminium wastage at the factory can be melted down and reformed for the next frame without losing any structural integrity!

Energy Efficient: U-values of less than 0.15 W/m2K can be achieved cost effectively without leading to excessively thick walls. This means our customers can efficiently insulate their garden room and benefit from more internal space 

Other FAQs

Do your frames carry a CE marking?

Yes, structural steelwork and aluminium structures are mandatory. All of our frames are manufactured to ISO 9001/2015 and EN 1090-1.2 standards

Beyond 31st December 2023, as part of Brexit,  we will move to the UKCA markings to comply with the necessary Construction Products Regulations

Do steel frames comply with Building Regulations?

Yes, for garden rooms with a footprint over 30m2 conforming to building regulations is mandatory. We will work alongside the nominated building inspector in the design phase to ensure compliance.

Are steel frames fireproof?

Steel is non-combustible; it does not add to the fire load of the building. Fire resistance periods of up to 120 minutes are readily achievable.

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