A building needs to be built in a way that it can withstand its own pressure and weight as well as its contents. To meet these requirements, load-bearing and framed structures have been invented and widely used in the construction. In this blog, we will review the load-bearing and framed structures, the two most common types of structures used in construction.
A load-bearing structure is a structure where the loads are borne by the walls. It’s the walls that carry the weight and transmit it to the foundation. A load bearing structure can be built in masonry or of reinforced concrete.
A framed structure consists of a system of beams and columns which transfer the loads down the building to the foundation. In a multi-storey building, steel beams and columns carry out the load bearing function. In a single-storey building, this function can be carried out by timber beams or sometimes aluminum beams.
The primary difference between load-bearing and framed structure is how the loads are distributed and transferred to the foundation. Below are some of the main differences between the two structures:
Framed structures are also known for their design flexibility. Thus, they are a preferred choice for residential construction projects.
Although, load-bearing system is considered to be an older construction method, it may still be used in the construction of single-storey residential homes. The framed structure is considered to have higher resistance to lateral forces and to be more flexible, so it is preferred in the construction of high-rise modern buildings.
It may be more expensive to build with framed structure as there’s a lot of work designer’s, engineer’s and structural steel fabricators’ work involved, but at the end of the day, a framed structure provides a more stable and safer structure.
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