Dietrich Metal Framing (Part Two of Two) - Steel: The Choice That’s a Win-Win for the Contractor and the Environment

In1991, Allied Building started distributing steel and began their collaboration with Dietrich Metal Framing—a company founded 49 years ago on the principles and products that has propelled them to be a leader in the industry.

With superior and uniform quality, versatility and being lightweight and having high strength, more and more builders are choosing steel as the top choice for their building material.

The following article is Part II taken from excerpts from a conversation with John Roberts, President of Dietrich Metal Framing. A seasoned professional in the industry for over twenty-five years, John joined Dietrich Metal Framing as their President one year ago.

Q. I know that Dietrich Metal Framing offers more than 3,000 high quality framing and finishing products, making it the one-stop source for contractors, suppliers, builders, architects, engineers and do-it-yourselfers. Can you tell me about Dietrich’s Clip Express Program?
A. At Dietrich we try to make the contractor’s job as easy as possible. The Clip Express Program provides everything a builder needs for the widest selection on deflection, bridging, rigid, general purpose and specialty clips and fasteners in a convenient, ready to use bucket. Dietrich Clip Express gets the contractor what they need, when they need it so they can stay on schedule using Dietrich’s top-quality products.

Q. What are some of the environmental benefits of steel?
A. Steel offers builders an environmentally friendly alternative to wood. Dietrich Metal Framing prides itself on taking a leadership role in both energy and environment design.

Q. Is steel recyclable?
A. Yes. Steel is 100% recyclable and is considered a green building material. Dietrich buys directly from steel mills and makes a point of knowing the recycled content.

Q. How does steel compare to other materials when it comes to being recycled?
A. More steel scraps, 60 million tons, are recycled each year. That is more than paper, aluminum, glass and plastic combined. Consider that it takes twenty-five old growth trees to build a 2,500 square foot home, compared to seven recycled automobiles for the same steel-framed home.

Q. What about waste?
A. Since there is little waste when using steel framing materials, builders can reduce their disposal costs. Also, with the increasing cost of gas, you’ll be making fewer trips to the landfill and diverting material from landfills. It’s a win-win situation for both the builder and the environment.

Q. Many people suffer from allergies or are susceptible to asthma. Does steel offer any advantage for those people?
A. Yes. There are a number of things to take into consideration. With steel framing, no off gassing from resins, adhesives or chemicals normally used for wood construction are needed, in addition to no pesticides or toxins to protect the framing from termites or vermin. Chemically sensitive homeowners, and those susceptible to asthma, are exposed to fewer toxins in a steel framed home making steel framing the healthiest choice.

Q. What if a builder works in a locale that deals with a high occurrence of earthquakes, hurricanes or flooding? Does steel offer any advantages over more traditional materials, such as wood?
A. Most definitely. Every potential environmental occurrence has its own set of concerns. For instance, take an area with a tendency to flood; steel is the best choice since it resists mold spores that can lead to chronic illness. The Healthy House Institute recommends steel framing for good indoor air quality and The American Lung Association encourages using steel framing with its Health House program.

Q. How about an area affected by earthquakes or hurricanes?
A. Since steel has the highest strength-to-weight ratio of any framing material, providing a lighter structure with stronger connections, this results in lower damage from seismic force. Also, since steel framing is screwed versus nailed, it provides stronger connections and can withstand greater winds. Steel’s strength and resiliency helps it survive earthquakes.

Q. Do you provide marketing tools for contractors?
A. Yes. Dietrich constantly strives to provide new and innovative products to the marketplace to help contractors and distributors be as successful as possible. At Dietrich Metal Framing we feel that the most educated team will make the most educated choice resulting in overall satisfaction, therefore we provide top quality technical support, customer care and field support.

Q. What type of technical support does Dietrich provide?
A. Dietrich Design Group (DGG), Dietrich’s independent professional services company, provides many services including certified shop drawings, free preliminary designs and a technical hotline for immediate assistance.

Q. What type of field support does Dietrich provide?
A. Product support, in-depth training and new product demonstrations are just some of the services provided by Dietrich’s experienced field personnel. Dietrich is committed to educating our contractors so they can provide the right solutions to their customers.

Q. Where are your service locations?
A. Dietrich Metal Framing operates 38 manufacturing and service locations throughout North America where you will find the most knowledgeable, responsive, “can do” attitudes.

Combining Dietrich’s superior quality products with their outstanding technical and field support, customer care and commitment to service gives contractors the “Dietrich Advantage.” To find out more visit

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