INTRODUCTION: THE PROPERTIES OF STEEL
Steel is a highly versatile and durable material that is crucial to the construction industry.
Unfortunately, without appropriate treatment, its Achilles’ heel, rust, can significantly diminish its potential. Enter galvanised steel. By combining steel’s strength with zinc’s anti-corrosion properties, galvanised steel offers an ingenious solution for outdoor construction applications.
This blog post explores what galvanised steel is, why it is preferred for outdoor construction, its benefits, and its many applications across different sectors.
WHAT IS GALVANISED STEEL?
Galvanised steel has undergone a specialised process called galvanising to prevent rusting. The process involves coating the steel with a layer of zinc. Zinc acts as a barrier, preventing moisture and oxygen – the two elements necessary for rust formation – from directly contacting the steel.
The galvanising process comes in two main forms: hot-dip and electro-galvanising. Hot-dip galvanising involves immersing the steel in a bath of molten zinc, resulting in a thicker coating suitable for heavy-duty applications. In contrast, electro-galvanising deposits a layer of zinc onto the steel via an electric current, producing a thinner, more uniform layer perfect for light-duty applications.
WHY USE GALVANISED STEEL IN OUTDOOR CONSTRUCTION?
Several characteristics make galvanised steel an exceptional material for outdoor construction. Its robustness and resilience make it an excellent choice for structures exposed to the elements. The galvanising process further enhances these traits, conferring corrosion resistance and an extended lifespan.
BENEFITS OF GALVANISED STEEL IN OUTDOOR CONSTRUCTION
Galvanised steel offers superior corrosion resistance, durability, and cost-effectiveness, making it ideal for outdoor construction projects.
Here are its key benefits:
The primary advantage of galvanised steel is its superior rust resistance. The zinc coating acts as a sacrificial anode, ‘taking the hit’ when corrosion attempts to form. In simpler terms, the zinc corrodes in place of the steel, ensuring the steel’s integrity for years to come.
Galvanised steel withstands harsh weather conditions and physical damage thanks to its rigid nature and the protective zinc layer. Galvanised steel stands strong when facing the scorching summer sun, heavy rainfall, or physical impacts.
Given its robustness and resistance to rust, galvanised steel structures enjoy an extended lifespan. Galvanised steel can often last over 50 years in outdoor settings without significant deterioration.
While the initial cost of galvanised steel might be higher than some materials, its durability and longevity make it a cost-effective choice in the long run. Less maintenance and replacement needs translate to substantial savings over time.
Finally, galvanised steel is a sustainable material choice. The zinc coating can be recycled, and the long lifespan of galvanised steel reduces the demand for replacement resources.
APPLICATIONS OF GALVANISED STEEL IN OUTDOOR CONSTRUCTION
Galvanised steel, a durable and corrosion-resistant material, has wide outdoor construction applications. From fences to rooftops, its strength and longevity make it ideal for enduring various weather conditions with minimal maintenance.
Let’s look at the most important of its applications:
Galvanised steel finds extensive use in residential outdoor fixtures, fences, and building structures. Its durability and rust resistance make it an ideal material for creating resilient, low-maintenance outdoor environments.
In the commercial sector, galvanised steel is used for signage, outdoor staircases, railings, and more. Its longevity ensures that commercial structures retain their aesthetic appeal for extended periods.
In industrial settings, galvanised steel is essential for outdoor infrastructure and equipment. Its strength and resistance to harsh conditions make it perfect for demanding industrial applications.
From bridges and highways to utility poles and public transport infrastructure, galvanised steel is a staple in the construction of public amenities. Its cost-effectiveness, durability, and minimal maintenance needs make it the material of choice for public infrastructure.
Ultimately, using galvanised steel in outdoor construction is a proven way to create durable, long-lasting structures. By opting for this robust and versatile material, you can enjoy cost savings, an extended lifespan, and sustainability benefits. Whether you are planning a residential, commercial, industrial, or public project, consider galvanised steel for your construction needs.