Another point that makes the transition to light gauge steel easier is the fact that you don’t have to convert to framing completely with light gauge steel all at once. We design many homes and buildings where the contractors choose to build the walls from light gauge/ cold formed steel while the floor were designed with lumber. Or the other way around. In general, cold-formed steel members provide the following advantages in building construction:
- As compared with thicker hot-rolled shapes, cold-formed light members can be manufactured for relatively light loads and /or short spans.
- Plywood or Oriented Strand Board (OSB) can be attached to the light gauge steel framing such as walls, floor and roof with pneumatic nails similar to the way they are attached to wood framing.
- Unusual light gauge steel sectional configurations can be produced by economically by cold-forming operations.
- Nestable sections can be produced, allowing for compact packaging and shipping.
- Load-carrying panels and decks can provide useful surfaces for floor, roof , and wall construction.
Compared with other materials such as timber and concrete, the following qualities can be realized for cold-formed steel structural members:
- High strength and stiffness.
- Ease of prefabrication and mass production of light gauge/ cold formed steel members.
- Fast and easy erection and installation of light gauge/ cold formed steel members.
- Substantial elimination of delays due to weather.
- Light gauge/ cold-formed steel dose not shrink and/ or creep at ambient temperatures like wood.
- Formwork is unneeded for light gauge/ cold formed steel construction.
- Light gauge/cold formed steel is termite and rot proof.
- Light gauge/cold formed steel is noncombustible.
Homes made from light gauge/cold formed steel provide the following advantages:
- Attractive appearance.
- Fast construction.
- Low maintenance.
- Easy extension.
- Lower long-term cost.