Steel vs. Wood for Pole Barn Construction

If you’re comparing the pros and cons of building a steel barn to a wood pole barn, it’s good to know that you’ve got options. There are many advantages of using steel instead of wood for traditional pole barn structures. However, the reality is that many folks don’t want to give up the authentic look of a wood barn. Here’s where a smart material swap makes the most sense!

Let’s take a look at the details of steel and wood pole barn structures, and keep in mind that a few smart swaps can make all the difference.

Traditional Pole Barn Construction

A pole barn is typically a structure that has vertical wooden beams planted into the ground. The vertical beams form the skeleton of the structure, and pretty much everything else about the building is built around those original beams, including the roof trusses and outer walls. 

Some pole barns – especially those that are used as living quarters – feature a concrete foundation to make up the floor. Others simply have a dirt or gravel layer that forms the floor of the pole barn.

Regardless of what material makes up the floor on a wood pole barn, the interior structure remains the same. The vertical wood beams serve as the main support for the barn, so they play a big role in determining how structurally sound the barn is – and how likely it is to hold up over time.

Main Problems with Wood Pole Barns

One of the main issues with wood-based pole barns is that the elements can really cause a lot of damage over the years. Moisture remains a top concern, especially in areas with high humidity, regular rainfall, or snowy winters. Wood naturally absorbs moisture, which can make beams rot, weaken, swell, and spawn mold spores.

Another issue with wood is that it’s quite flammable and damage prone. Fire concerns never seem to go away on remote properties where pole barns are common. Switching to a less flammable material, like steel, is appealing for anyone concerned about fire damage.

Wood isn’t just limited to the vertical beams on most pole barns – historically, wood was used to create the interior walls, siding, and sometimes even the roofing. 

Wood siding comes with an abundance of other issues, too, like tedious maintenance. Since wood is known to have lots of issues, many people are considering other options when comparing steel barns to wood pole barns.

They are built with a high grade of steel, so pole barns with metal frames are considerably stronger than traditional wood pole barns. The reality is that most homeowners already have a wood pole barn structure – or they’re too familiar with this classic building technique to switch to a metal frame method. For that reason, the best alternative is to work on the siding, which poses an easy opportunity to enhance a classic pole barn structure.

Steel Siding Delivers Heavy-Duty Protection from the Elements

Metal siding is a great option for enhancing a classic pole barn structure and making it more durable overall. Even if the interior poles are wood, replacing old wood siding with strong, weather-resistant steel can make a world of difference in terms of longevity, durability, fire safety, and aesthetic appearance.

Metal siding does not deteriorate the way wood does, which means steel siding is equipped to last year after year with minimal maintenance. Without the risk of rotting, chipping, peeling, or swelling – all of which is very common with wood siding – metal pole barn siding stands strong and unaffected by the elements. This translates to easier maintenance, a better appearance, and overall stronger protection for a pole barn.

Wood-Style Steel Offers the Best of Both Worlds

For those who love the look of wood, there’s no need to compromise when switching to steel. Wood-style steel siding features authentic-looking wood grain textures and rich colors, like cedar, pine, walnut, and more. In addition, a UV-protectant coating ensures that the color tone remains consistent – unlike natural wood paints and stains that often fade unevenly with prolonged sun exposure.

On top of flaunting an outstanding surface appearance that captures the character of real wood, wood-style steel siding provides an enhanced strength that can’t be beat. A corrosion-resistant layer stands up to scratching, denting, peeling, and chipping – blemishes that are common with wood siding. The 26-gauge steel core simply offers better protection overall for a pole barn, over regular wood siding.

Build the Best Pole Barn with Metal and Metal Wood Look Siding From TruLog
When evaluating steel vs. wood pole barns, there really is no comparison! Contact TruLog today to explore a wealth of wood-style steel siding that can enhance your pole barn structure with strength and beauty for years to come.

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