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3 Different Classifications of Structural Steel Beams

April 23, 2021

Structural steel beams are one of the most vital parts of a construction building or architectural structure. A structural beam is a supportive structural element that is specially designed to provide support for heavy loads across a wide area. They come in a broad range of shapes and sizes, depending on your specific construction needs. Picking the right type of steel beam depends on several factors as each type has its own unique properties to make sure that you get the right level of support you need for your construction project.

Types of Beams

Structural steel beams are generally categorized according to their shape and the kind of support they provide to sctructures. The most common cuts that you can find are the straight beams, but there are also some curved ones. When it comes to shapes, the three widely used ones in the construction industry include the I-beam, H-beam, and W-beam.

As the name implies, I-Beams have the shape of the capital letter “I” with tapered flanges. They are cross-sectional structural steel beams which are usually used for industrial applications. They come with different flanges, either as a parallel-flanged surface called a “wide” beam or an S-beam with a slope on its inner flange. H-Beams are very similar to I-Beams but they look like the capital letter “H”, hence the name. They are usually mistaken for an I-beam but they have longer flanges and are heavier compared to I-beams.

The last type is called the W-Beam which is often utilized for residential construction. Same as I-Beam, W-Beam also has wide straight flanges. So, in essence, it is the shape of the beams that distinguish one structural beam from the other.

Scarboro Steel Works provides high-quality structural steel beams to lend strength and stability to your construction. Contact us today to see what we can offer for your business.