When it comes to Steel or Timber in your new home, it is important to know the facts.
Strength and Durability
All homes built in Australia by licensed professional builders are engineered to meet Australian standards regardless of the frame material being used. Any home professionally built and engineered will stand the test of time. Every piece of timber is machine stressed and awarded a structural grade.
Steel relies on a protective aluminium/zinc/magnesium alloy coating to prevent corrosion. When a frame is cut, or a hole drilled for electrical, this exposes untreated steel to the elements. If water penetrates these areas, or you build close to salt air on the coast, these exposed areas could cause corrosion resulting in weakness to the frames. Blue pine timber can easily be cut and drilled as required, without affecting the performance of the termite resistance.
At Pycon Homes, we use Hyne T2 blue pine treated timber frames. Blue pine has been treated with a termite resistant water based synthetic pyrethroid. To date, Hyne Timber has
produced enough blue pine timber to build over 350,000 homes, with zero reported failures. Hyne T2 Blue pine comes with a 25 year guarantee to remain termite resistant.
In addition, we install a physical termite barrier around the slab perimeter and all pipe penetrations. It is worth noting, even in a steel frame home, appropriate termite protection should be installed. Even though the frame may be steel, the construction of a home requires use of timber products elsewhere in the home. While termites may not eat steel, they may still find something else they delight in. Steel does not eradicate the risk of termites.
The process of smelting iron ore with blast furnaces to create steel, requires very high levels of energy uses. The manufacturers of these products leave a massive carbon footprint throughout the entire production process. In addition, part of this energy intensive process is coating the material in a protective aluminium/zinc/magnesium alloy coating to prevent corrosion.
The Synthetic Pyrethroids used in termite protection are so safe, they are commonly used in flea collars for cats and dogs. Timber frames are a natural and renewable resource. All our
timber is ethically and sustainably sourced. The process of manufacturing timber uses far less energy per unit than steel. Timber is renewable, recyclable, waste efficient, biodegradable, carbon positive and all sourced locally from Australian plantations.
Inside your home
Steel frames suffer from thermal transfer. The transfer of heat throughout the home is greater than that of wood. A timber framed home will be warmer in winter and cooler in summer. Steel requires more energy to heat and cool. Due to the higher thermal transfer, steel will expand and contract in changing temperatures more so than timber, resulting in creaking and cracking throughout the home. In windy conditions a creaking sound can be more pronounced. Sometimes it is hard enough to find that stud in a wall to hang your picture as it is. Everything from installing a shelf to hanging a picture is so much easier with a timber frame.
When’s all said and done, building a new home is exciting! Whether you need advice, a quote, or just want to discuss your options, we’re here to help.