Go-To Guide to Aluminum Extrusion in Construction
The manufacturing process looks nothing like it did decades ago. Today, technological development has given way to new manufacturing techniques allowing manufacturers to utilize materials in innovative ways. One such material that’s being heavily used in manufacturing and design is aluminum.
Aluminum is known for its perfect balance between malleability and stiffness. While the former allows it to be easily cast and machined, the latter ensures stability and strength. These properties have led to aluminum extrusion, which is a process by which the aluminum alloy is forced through a die with a particular cross-sectional profile, resulting in the same shape as the die.
Aluminum extrusion profiles have become a fundamental feature in the global construction industry due to its structural integrity and cost benefits. Since aluminum extrusion helps create complicated shapes on long continuous pieces, it can be utilized for various construction materials. Here’s what you need to know about using it in the construction industry:
What kind of shapes can you create with aluminum extrusion?
There are typically three types of extruded shapes you can create with this process. These are:
- Solid shapes that have no enclosed openings or voids, like an angle, rod, or beam.
- Hollow shapes that have one or more voids like rectangular or square tubes.
- Semi-hollow shapes that are partially enclosed like “C” channels with narrow gaps.
Aluminum extrusion has a variety of applications across a wide range of industries, including energy, automotive, aerospace, and electronics industries.
Excellent structural strength
Aluminum’s incredible strength is a significant benefit for the construction industry. In fact, its strength is often compared to steel with one-third of the weight. This is why this feature allows for an excellent finish product without it being as heavy as steel.
Additionally, building components made of steel also maintain their fundamental properties in extreme weather conditions. Aluminum is much more cold-resistant than other materials like brick. This makes it an ideal choice for outdoor building components since it can resist weather conditions, thereby reducing the costs of maintenance.
Great Functionality and Versatility
As discussed above, aluminum is incredibly versatile and can be used to create precise shapes. Due to this, it fits any project specification allowing for total versatility that can accommodate any shape or size required for a construction project. From large to small parts, aluminum extrusion components are now a fundamental part of housing construction.
Due to its versatility, aluminum extrusion meets the requirements of building construction projects and can help you create a variety of products, such as window and door frames, shower frames, decorative pieces, and aluminum fencing. It can also be used for storm shutter systems in hurricane zones, greenhouses, deck railing, pool enclosures, and sunroom framing. These are just a few of the many ways you can use custom and standard extrusions from aluminum alloys.
Today, many manufacturers are focusing on improving efficiency and reducing energy consumption. Custom aluminum extrusion can help construction companies create more energy-efficient residential buildings and homes that provide long-lasting sustainability, resulting in less waste or replacements and repairs later.
Additionally, many builders today focus on deconstruction instead of demolition, making it possible for them to extract recycled materials, reducing the overall cost of dumping in a landfill. Moreover, aluminum’s unique properties ensure it can be recycled repeatedly without its durability or strength being compromised. Reusing and recycling aluminum building materials significantly reduces the detrimental effects on energy use and the environment.
Better Aesthetic Designs
Due to its malleable nature, aluminum extrusion building materials offer endless possibilities for any construction project’s unique design features. In fact, you can incorporate practically any design feature you want in your project because of the flexibility the extrusion process offers.
Additionally, you can also add extra finishing to your project’s aesthetics. Most designers and architects opt for painting and powder-coated anodizing to provide additional protection from damage, too. You can make any possible decorative element or try any aesthetic finish with aluminum.
This finishing can enhance the appearance of the metal and improve its corrosion resistance, too. Moreover, the anodization process thickens aluminum’s naturally-occurring oxide layer, making it more resistant to wear and tear, and providing a porous surface that accepts different colored dyes and improves surface emissivity.
Increased Corrosion Resistance
Another advantage aluminum extrusion offers is its high corrosion resistance, making it an incredibly popular material for housing and building construction. Aluminum alloys are weatherproof, immune to the negative impact of UV rays, and corrosion-resistant. These properties ensure the longevity of construction projects and reduce maintenance and repair costs.
Excellent Conducting Properties
Due to its overall cost and weight, aluminum is excellent at conducting heat and cold better than other metals, making extrusions better for applications that require heat dissipation or heat exchangers. Additionally, extrusion’s design flexibility allows optimization of heat dissipation in housing projects. Lastly, aluminum is also twice as conductive as copper, making aluminum extrusion a cost-effective option for bus bar distribution components and electrical connectors.
Aluminum extrusion is an excellent process for when you want to create specific parts for your construction projects. Due to its numerous advantages, it’s used all around us, and you’d be surprised how many products are made through this straightforward process.
All of aluminum’s properties make it an excellent solution to cater to growing manufacturing needs, and its usage is only expected to increase. It’s an excellent alternative to consider and offers many advantages over other metals.