Steel studs make Bob Vila’s ‘75 Best Tips List’ for rehabilitation projects, and a contractor demonstrates the ease of installation for a renovation project in Brooklyn, New York.

Originally posted at buildsteel.org

Bob Vila, known for hosting the television shows This Old House, Bob Vila’s Home Again, Bob Vila, and Restore America with Bob Vila, recently turned 75 years old. To celebrate his birthday, bobvila.com developed a list of Bob Vila’s 75 Best Tips for Homeowners on home maintenance and repair. The list includes using cold-formed (CFS) steel studs for rehabilitation projects.

Bob Vila affirms benefits of steel framing

Vila, who has had a remodeling and design business, spent almost three decades hosting television shows about home renovation and preservation. He has written more than a dozen books about purchasing and maintaining homes, according to bobvila.com. It’s fair to say that home remodeling is Vila’s life’s work.

So, when one of Vila’s “Best Tips” lists includes the use of steel framing, Vila is sharing a lifetime’s worth of experience and satisfaction with the product.

Tip No. 61 on Vila’s list states: “If your next renovation requires framing, consider using steel studs. They don’t bow, don’t attract insects, and are resistant to mold and fire.”

Why do builders prefer steel framing?

Cold-formed steel (CFS) leads the way as the preferred framing material for remodeling and new construction for multiple reasons. CFS is:

  • A pre-engineered material that can be cut to exact lengths
  • Dimensionally stable and does not expand or contract with changes in moisture content
  • Lightweight compared to wood and concrete
  • Will not warp, split, crack or creep when exposed to the elements
  • Sustainable and 100% recyclable
  • Durabile and has a high tensile strength
  • Non-combustible and is a safeguard against fire accidents

‘Bob Villa’s Home Again’ episode features steel studs

In an episode of the series Bob Villa’s Home Again, Dino Koukoudakis from Dino’s Construction demonstrated techniques used to frame with metal studs. The project involved the rehabilitation of a 19th century abandoned warehouse in Brooklyn, N.Y.  The adaptive reuse project featured the construction of three modern apartments with commercial space at street level. In the video, Koukoudakis demonstrated the installation of steel studs to frame an exterior and partition wall.

Vila asked why he preferred using CFS framing for a rehabilitation project. Koukoudakis replied that metal studs are “lightweight and they do not warp.”

Koukoudakis used self-tapping screws to frame a wall to create a walk-in closet with metal studs. “Watch how he cuts this, because it is so quick,” said Vila.  “Make two snips on the side [using aviation snips], bend it down, and cut right across.”

At the end of the steel framing episode, Vila concluded: “[Steel is] simple, it’s sturdy, and it’s moisture proof.”