Steel buildings have countless advantages over brick buildings, especially in commercial construction. Brick buildings are beautiful and quaint but they don’t have the long-lasting durability and strength that steel buildings do. Steel buildings can save you time, money, and headaches both during the construction process and for years to come.
First, steel is less expensive than brick. Steel parts can be pre-fabricated, which reduces labor costs during construction. Brick buildings, in contrast, have to be put together brick by brick with many skilled laborers. For many years into the future, brick will have to constantly be re-mortared due to the freezing and thawing that causes cracks in the mortar. This can get rather expensive. Steel buildings require very little maintenance for many years.
Steel lasts longer than brick. Brick allows mold to grow easily in the cracks of the mortar. Fluctuations in temperature and moisture levels greatly affect brick buildings, causing them to quickly decompose. Brick does not hold up as well as steel in the event of a hurricane or earthquake, or a tornado, which we are relatively likely to see here in West Texas. Metal buildings are even the usual refuge spots for people without basements during tornados.
Steel is easier to build with. As stated before, steel can be prefabricated and shipped directly to the building site so the puzzle pieces simply have to be put together. The steel building process is rarely interrupted by inclimate weather so buildings can usually be erected in a few months. However, with brick, it is impossible to lay brick when the temperature is below 40 degrees Fahrenheit. Construction also must be halted during snow, rain, and times of high humidity.
Steel is better for the environment. As we have stated before, steel is 100% recyclable while brick is not recyclable at all. Much of the steel that is used today was once recycled. At the end of brick’s life as a building, it takes a long time for a brick to decompose. The manufacturing and transportation energy usage of a brick building is much higher than that of a steel building so steel has a much smaller carbon footprint. Steel buildings are more energy efficient while in use than brick buildings, creating lower heating and air conditioner costs.
Steel is better for the health of occupants. Like we said above, mold easily grows in brick which can be a major health hazard to those living and working inside. The air quality of a steel building is better than a brick building.
Steel buildings can be made with a brick facade. A lot of people choose brick over steel because they believe steel is unattractive. However, steel buildings can be dressed up with glass, stucco, brick, and wood. A building can look any way a builder needs it to while having the strength and durability of steel.