Pre-Engineered Steel Building FAQ

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					Pre-Engineered Steel Building FAQ
If you have recently bought a new piece of property or are thinking of
developing your current property with a new building you may have
wondered whether to go with wood or steel. My goal in this article is to
try to help you make an informed decision if you decide to purchase a
steel building. A very popular way to go is with a pre-engineered steel
building. And if you are unsure of what that is I will do my best to
explain that term.
There are a lot of variables that go into purchasing a pre-engineered
steel building. First of all let me define what the term means. A pre-
engineered steel building is a steel building that has been engineered at
the factory to meet the local building codes for your given area where
the building will be erected. There are many environmental factors that
determine how the pre-engineered steel building will have to be designed.
Snow load on the roof is one of them, your elevation and location is a
determining factor of this. Snow load is measured in terms of pounds per
square foot. Be sure that when you buy your steel building that you are
not responsible for the removal of the snow.
Your contract with the manufacturer will need to be examined closely. If
you are responsible for the removal of snow, this allows the building
manufacturer to legally design the steel building with less strength, and
in the event you have heavy snow the build up and extra weight will cause
the steel building to have a structural failure and you be have no
recourse to recover your losses. Wind load is also another factor, this
causes what is called wind shear and can be just as destructive as snow.
You have probably seen steel buildings that have damage to the roof
panels. Sometimes this is from the use of thin gauged steel or even low
grade softer steel. If you have roll up doors installed, be sure your
doors meet the 3 second sustained gust rating for your area.
Wind Exposure is also an issue depending on the local surroundings. This
is determined by how many other structures are around that area, their
relative height, and the amount of trees nearby and also if you are near
large bodies of water or open fields. Finally you have seismic; this is a
factor that depends on how much earthquake induced movement you have in
your area. So if you live near a fault line you are going to have some
higher costs because of this. All of these factors can be researched
through local agencies depending on where you are located. If you are in
the city limits you will need to get a hold of your local city building
engineer for more information.
If you are outside the city limits you will need to give your local
county engineer a call for further information of what they require. If
you have internet access most of these phone numbers can be easily found
by entering your city or county name and doing a search. Soil also has a
determining factor because local soil conditions vary greatly in some
places. Certain soil types support less weight per square foot, you will
need someone to come to your site and check this out.
So let's recap what we have covered here. Pre-engineered steel buildings
are designed at the factory to survive your local environment which is
determined by snow load, wind load, wind exposure and seismic. I hope
this has helped you to make an informed decision when buying a steel
building. Visit our website at
for more details
What does pre-engineered steel building mean and what kind of factors
determine their design.