Types of Sheet Metal

Alpine Sheet Metal Systems

Many construction projects require sheet metal as a primary building component. It’s great for roofing, siding, and plenty of other applications. When you are planning your project, you will want to see what kinds of sheet metal are available for sourcing.

At Alpine Sheet Metal Systems, we fabricate all of the most common metals, including three kinds of steel, aluminum, and copper.

Learn more about each option to see which might be ideally suited for your project.

Galvalume Sheet Metal

Galvalume is a great sheet metal for many projects. Galvalume is a steel alloy that has an outer coating made from a separate alloy. The coating is typically 45 percent zinc and 55 percent aluminum. In these ratios, the coating alloy protects the steel underneath from oxidation and other sources of damage.

Galvalume is a very durable metal that can withstand the elements, and it has the general strength of steel.

Galvalume comes in a matte finish, and because of its material properties and aesthetics, it is often used for commercial and agricultural projects. You will still see it in some residential projects too, but a little less frequently.

Stainless Steel Sheet Metal

Stainless steel is premium steel. It is a steel alloy that is inherently resistant to rust, water damage, and most forms of corrosion. Because of that, it does extremely well in outdoor applications, and it is just as strong as any other steel.

Since stainless steel does not rely on an outer coating to protect it from the weather, it tends to last a lot longer than galvalume or galvanized steel.

As an example, the Chrysler Building in NYC has a stainless steel roof that has lasted for roughly 100 years so far.

Stainless steel is great for longevity. It requires very little maintenance, and it’s environmentally friendly. It’s also lighter than coated steels, making it better for applications where weight matters.

Galvanized Sheet Metal

Galvanized sheet metal is probably the most common steel you will see in outdoor applications. This is a simple steel with an outer coating that protects it from weathering. The coating is a zinc alloy that is completely resistant to rust.

One often underrated advantage of galvanized steel is that it holds paint well, opening it up to a lot of different aesthetic designs. On top of that, paint coatings can reinforce the protective zinc layer, helping the steel to last longer.

Galvanized steel is one of the most affordable metal options. It still has the strength of steel, and it is the most available and abundant steel option.

When you need steel but you’re trying to minimize material costs, galvanized sheet metal is a common choice.

Aluminum Sheet Metal

Aluminum is one of the best metals for outdoor use cases. Aluminum is extremely durable against all kinds of weather. It doesn’t rust, resists most sources of corrosion, and is even resilient in saltwater climates.

With all of that longevity, aluminum is a strong metal and very durable. It can stand up to severe weather without a problem. In the case of roofing, aluminum sheet metal can last the lifetime of a building.

Considering the extreme durability of aluminum sheet metal, it is still remarkably affordable, making it one of the most cost-effective sheet metal options.

Copper Sheet Metal

Last on the list is copper. It is arguably the most durable of all of these sheet metals, and that is because of its natural patina. The copper patina protects the metal from oxidation and other forms of corrosion. 

Copper is also very strong and can stand up to extreme weather without flinching. Copper roofs have been known to last multiple hundreds of years, just to put this durability into perspective.

Because of its durability — especially in the presence of water — copper is used in many different applications.

But even while it provides these advantages, it’s also a very aesthetically pleasing metal choice. This is why it is considered a luxury sheet metal option, especially in architectural applications. For all of that luxury and beauty, copper is usually the most expensive sheet metal option.

Get Your Sheet Metal From Alpine Sheet Metal Systems

Regardless of which metal is right for your project, Alpine Sheet Metal Systems can fabricate it to order. We do custom work and large-scale work. So, no matter the extent of the project, we’re equipped to keep you supplied.

Contact us today. We’ll put you in touch with one of our experts who can help you explore your options and ensure that you get sheet metal fabricated exactly to specifications.

ASMS Sheet Metal Fabrication

About Jeff Folsom

Jeff Folsom is the founder and president of Alpine Sheet Metal Systems, a key player in North Texas’s commercial construction sector, specializing in roofing and architectural design. He also leads Alpine Roofing Construction and Alpine Thermal Imaging Systems, expanding his influence across the U.S. Residing in Dallas, Jeff enjoys travel, auto racing, and boating in his free time.

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