Before you start calling spray foam insulation contractors or before you schedule a drywall installation, it is crucial that you install the right framing for your home. Those who are doing a home remodel or a basement finish, probably heard about both metal and wood studs. One more traditional and the other more difficult to cut, these two are the best materials to provide structural support for your home.
Truth is, both wood and metal stud framing offer various benefits and the decision you make should be based entirely on your personal preferences. To make the right choice, it is recommended that you consult with certified framing and drywall contractors in Toronto. In the meantime, here is a useful comparison that will make you look at things from another perspective:
WOOD STUD FRAMING BASICS
First, we will start with the oldest material which is wood. Wooden framing has been around for centuries, but after metal came around, it sort of lost its reputation. Even though the industry has started to ignore it, wooden stud framing can be suitable for some homes.
Wood studs are commonly used for projects that involve windows and doors. This is because unlike metal studs, wooden ones can make it easier for you to nail things in the doorframe. They come in a variety of sizes, from 2 x 4 to 2 x 8 inches and are usually attached with nails and hammers. When it comes to the type of wood used, you can find anything, including cedar, hardwood, pine, and spruce.
WOOD STUDS PROS AND CONS
Putting popular metal stud framing trends aside, wooden studs have their benefits. In theory, they are stronger than metal studs. Being a heavyweight material, they will provide structural support for almost anything. Wood studs are perfect for new cabinets, doorways, and load-bearing walls. They are also easier to cut and adjust than metal studs.
Cutting metal can be even dangerous while with wood you can finish the job with an old- fashioned saw. The last important perk of wooden studs is that they can last a lifetime. However, some of their cons might cut this long lifespan in half.
As a material, wood is vulnerable to moisture, termites, and rot. Even though the material can last a 100 years in theory, put it in a live and breathing environment, and it can get damaged in a matter of months. That’s why you shouldn’t install them in your damp and moisty basement.
Additionally, wood is more expensive than metal. So you will end up purchasing a material that easily rots, will probably need fixing or replacing, and can warp due to humidity…All of those disadvantages for a higher price than steel.
METAL STUD FRAMING BASICS
Metal stud framing is the talk of the decade. Unlike wood, this modern material won’t rot and get damaged by nasty termites. Being a lightweight and durable material, it’s obvious why framing and drywall contractors in Toronto are in love with it.
Metal studs are typically used for nonbearing walls. Metal studs can also be attached to wooden framing. Being lightweight, metal won’t cause any deteriorations on the already existing wood framing. The type of metal used for these quick and easy studs is usually steel, and that’s why they are also referred to as steel studs. They cannot be installed with nails and that’s why drywall screws are the common choice for their installation.
METAL STUDS PROS AND CONS
The size of the metal studs depend on the frame they are being attached to. Their thickness varies from 2 ½ to 14 inches. Nonetheless, they are still lightweight and are easier to store and maintain. As we mentioned, metal studs aren’t vulnerable to termites, rot, and moisture.
Additionally, unlike wood, they will also withstand a difficult fire. Their other benefit is that they are much less expensive than wood. Being both durable and affordable, one can easily see why everybody is obsessed with them.
However, as every material, steel studs can bring some difficulties. Luckily, there aren’t cons, in fact only 2. The biggest disadvantage of metal is that it is hard to cut and shape it. A qualified contractor will manage to shape them with a metal cutting saw, but DIY-ers should not try this on their own at any cost!
Their other con is that they can be a bit more expensive than expected. This is mainly because there aren’t many contractors who dwell in the world of metal stud framing. However, if you find the right company for the job, everything will go as planned.
As we saw, there are many things involved in choosing between metal and wooden stud framing. What is crucial in making this decisions is that you must consult with professionals to help you out with the process. DIY is always interesting, but not when with it you compromise the integrity of your entire structure.
Metal stud framing is the way of the future, but wooden can prove useful to some. Concluding which one is better is literally impossible, but the fact is that wood has one very important disadvantage: it gets easily damaged. So if you are looking for a durable and care-free option, metal is probably the best option for your home.