Which Is Better: A Metal Building or a Pole Barn?

When you need a barn, agricultural building, greenhouse, shop, storage building or something similar, you may come across pole barn and metal building options. At first glance, they may appear similar, but if you dig a little deeper, you will see that a clear winner emerges when it comes to value, durability and longevity.

Steel Framed Buildings
Pole Barn

Understanding Pole Barn Construction 

Pole barns have wooden columns dug deep into the ground that support the remainder of the building, and the walls of the pole barn are typically comprised of wood or metal. In most cases, pole barns do not have foundations, instead having basic dirt floors. 

Understanding Metal Building Construction 

In a prefabricated metal building, all components are steel, including the frame, the wall girts, the roof purlins, and all screws and fasteners. These buildings have foundations underneath, creating an additional layer of strength and stability. 

Why Metal Buildings Are the Obvious Choice  

Pre-engineered steel buildings outperform pole barns in several critical ways. First, they’re much more structurally sound. The strength of a pole barn depends on the strength of its poles, and when those poles are wooden, they rot and deteriorate over time. This threatens the integrity of the entire building, and it also means it takes a lot more effort and expense to maintain these buildings through the years.

Metal buildings with clear spans free up more usable floor space than pole barns by eliminating interior poles or supports. Instead, they provide additional room for storage, vehicles, agricultural equipment and the like.

They also help you avoid common pest-related construction risks. Termites do not threaten steel buildings the way they do wooden ones. By eliminating poles and wooden rafters, you also help avoid having birds roost or build nests within your barn or building, which may result in unsightly droppings and serious health hazards.