Steel VS. Concrete. Which is better for building?

February 15, 2023by setuprankeo0

When starting a new construction project, the thing people give the most thinking to is the material they are going to do it with, which goes hand in hand with the company they are going to develop their project with, also one of the main preoccupations. Among the various material options out there on the market today, this article will be aimed to compare steel to concrete. The first is the most modern way, while the second has been present in the building industry for a long time. 

Construction Time

When thinking about building with concrete one should have in mind that it requires time to cure completely, to solidify, which extends construction time, given that in order to keep on building you first need for your concrete base to be ready. 

Steel, however, not only does not extend construction time but instead reduces it. How? Because of its prefabricated system under which the company one starts their project with all finished materials (already measured and cut) needed to build with. 

Labor Requirement

When building with concrete intensive labor is needed so that the concrete structure can be erected at a vivid pace. Given that handling concrete requires the help from professional concrete handlers when working with concrete there is no chance for the client to be included in the building process.

As it has been previously exposed, steel buildings are carried out with the prefab system, which will cause for no hammering, cutting, welding, and machining, to name a few, to take place at the building site. This basically means that steel structures will require a notorious less amount of labor that concrete structures. Additionally, because of the prefab system, if the owner wished to, he could be involved in the constructing and so dimmish the work force cost. 

Environmental Sustainability

This point should not be lightly taken, given that fortunately for our planet, the newest generations are responding and consuming much more to and from products that at least contemplate the wellbeing of the planet, even better to and from those who seek its wellbeing. 

Concrete is a material that can only be recycled once it has served its purpose, but it can no longer be used for construction. Only around 50% of concrete used for building is recycled and the remaining part is tossed into waste landfills, which is a serious environmental problem. What is more, to make concrete cement is crucial, but it is also a major source of carbon dioxide. 

Fortunately, steel buildings are highly recyclable, and because of the durability of the material it can be reused as well. For these reasons, steel is mainly absent in landfills. What is more, steel recycling is even cheaper than producing fresh new steel, which involuntarily promotes good environmental practices. Steel is a much greener option.

Economic Costs

The production cost of concrete is incredibly low compared to other building materials, given that all the ingredients needed to create concrete are simple and easy to attain. Only water, cement and aggregates are needed to create concrete, and they are all easy to find in every market.

Compared to concrete, because of all the advancements in technology, steel proves to be more cost-effective, which does not mean cheaper, than concrete. The cost-effectiveness comes from the strength of the materials: 

Their costs are similar, ranging of course according to the different suppliers, but given that steel produces a stronger structure with less material than concrete, it results as more cost-effective.


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