Steel channels are versatile product which are available in many different sizes and thicknesses. Their cross-section can be like squared-off C, having straight back and 2 perpendicular extensions at the top and bottom.
Steel channel of different types can add inward-facing lips at the end of extension and parallel to the back, which makes the structure much more rigid, almost similar to any rectangular steel tubing.
Few other kinds of channel have few holes or perforations meant for bolting, and others may also add slight ridge to back in order to further increase its rigidity.
As compared to few other structural steel items like I-beams, a steel channel is much lighter and little more flexible, although it may offer less torsional strength, that make it prone to twist under certain conditions.
Steel channel has many uses, and most of them are structural, and following are few common examples:
For building walls for warehouses, garages, workshops and few other metal buildings steel channels are often used which are much stronger than wood or other construction materials used.
- Pole barn walls
Steel channels are used in the pole barns to form walls, where it will run horizontally from one pole to the other for providing attachment point for siding on exterior, which is usually a sheet metal.
For roofs, steel channel is used as rafters, where they will provide support for roof deck. If you use steel channel in place of wood rafters, then the rafters will be lighter and smaller while supporting same weight.
- Frames for doors and windows
Steel channel is used for creating secure frames for doors and windows in both metal as well as wood-framed buildings.
- Wood beam supports
If you need extra strength in a wooden frame building, then steel channel is used for increasing the strength and rigidity of wooden beams.
- Vehicle frames
Often steel channel is used for constructing the vehicle frames and is also specially-formed for any particular function. Typically, heavy-duty steel channel can too be used for creating main frame rails that runs from vehicle front to the back.
Quite often steel channel is used for constructing trailers, that includes flatbed trailers, travel trailers or box trailers and also RVs.
- Metal buildings
Steel channels are used by using I-beams and various other steel products for building commercial or industrial buildings, like warehouses.