Fences can be made out of a wide variety of materials, but two of the most durable and long lasting are steel and aluminum. Both offer a structurally sound fencing option that can provide privacy and security for an extended period of time. However, there are a number of key differences between the two types of fencing materials, and knowing what those disadvantages are gives you the knowledge necessary to make an educated decision about which type of material is best for your fence.
Aluminum is extremely durable, but it is also extremely lightweight, which makes it very easy to transport and install. Additionally, aluminum fences will not corrode, which means that you will not have to worry about rust damaging and eventually bringing down your fence. When compared to steel, aluminum is much less expensive. Furthermore, aluminum fencing is completely recyclable, which means that there are no environmental concerns associated with an aluminum fence.
However, a major concern of aluminum fencing is the fact that it can be easily bent or rent apart, which means that it is not ideal for a security fence. Additionally, its malleability means that it can be easily dented, which can be a concern with children or in areas where heavy precipitation and hail are common.
Steel fencing is made out of galvanized steel, which is coated in zinc to prevent it from rusting. Steel is incredibly dense and strong, and will not be easily damaged by any sort of impact. Steel fences can last years of enduring the weather without any concern to the structural stability of the fence. Steel fencing also provides an aesthetic that is very similar to wrought iron at a cheaper cost, making it ideal for those who want to have a fence that appears to be wrought iron but who are unable to afford the cost.
However, over time the zinc coating on steel fences can break down, which can result in rust developing on your fence. This can ruin the aesthetic of the fence, but also make it unstable, which can be a safety concern. This means that steel fencing is not well suited to coastal areas, where salt water is prevalent. Also, steel fencing costs significantly more than aluminum fencing, making it less than ideal for those on a tight budget. Finally, steel fencing is much harder and costly to install due to its weight, though this can be seen as a security benefit.