Understanding Steel Thickness and Gauges for Structural Roof Deck, Composite Floor Deck, and Form Decking for Concrete Pour

When it comes to structural roof deck, composite floor deck, and form decking for concrete pour,
understanding the importance of steel thickness and gauges is crucial. These components play a vital
role in ensuring the structural integrity, durability, and safety of a building. In this blog post, we will
delve into the significance of steel thickness and gauges in relation to these specific applications,
highlighting key considerations and industry best practices.

Structural Roof Deck:


Structural roof deck refers to a type of decking system that supports the roof covering and provides
structural strength. Steel thickness and gauges for roof deck are typically determined by the span
requirements, load conditions, and design specifications of the project. Common gauges for structural
roof deck range from 18 to 22, with thicker gauges offering increased load-carrying capacity and
durability. The selection of the appropriate gauge is crucial in ensuring the roof deck can withstand the
anticipated loads, including dead loads, live loads, and environmental factors such as wind and snow.

Composite Floor Deck:


Composite floor deck is used in multi-story buildings to support the weight of concrete slabs during
construction and provide additional strength to the structure. The steel thickness and gauges for
composite floor deck depend on factors such as span length, load requirements, fire resistance, and deflection criteria. Common gauges for composite floor deck typically range from 18 to 22. Thicker gauges are often used for longer spans or higher load-bearing capacities. It is important to consult engineering guidelines and local building codes to determine the appropriate steel thickness and gauge for composite floor deck in order to meet the specific project requirements.

Form Decking for Concrete Pour:


Form decking, also known as pan decking or bridge decking, is used as a stay-in-place formwork during
concrete pours for elevated slabs and bridges. Steel thickness and gauges for form decking are
determined by the desired concrete thickness, span lengths, and load requirements. Common gauges
for form decking usually range from 20 to 26. Thicker gauges may be used for larger spans or heavier
loads to ensure the decking can withstand the weight of the wet concrete during the construction
process. Lighter gauges are common when the bar joists or purlins are more closely spaced.

9/16” Form Deck over purlins and beams

Considerations and Best Practices:


When selecting the appropriate steel thickness and gauges for structural roof deck, composite floor
deck, and form decking, it is essential to consider the following factors:

  • Structural Requirements: Consult with structural engineers and adhere to local building codes to
    determine the appropriate steel thickness and gauge for each application, considering the
    anticipated loads and span lengths.
  • Design Specifications: Ensure that the chosen steel thickness and gauges align with the project's
    design specifications, including fire ratings, deflection limits, and acoustic requirements.
  • Material Durability: Thicker gauges offer increased durability and resistance to wear and tear,
    which is particularly important in high-traffic areas or regions with harsh environmental
    conditions.
  • Supplier Expertise: We recommend that you partner with a reputable steel deck supplier or
    manufacturer who can provide guidance and assistance in selecting the optimal steel thickness
    and gauges for your specific project needs. Job-specific drawings will be helpful in determining
    the specific profile type and gauge.

Conclusion:


Steel thickness and gauges play a critical role in the performance and longevity of structural roof deck,
composite floor deck, and form decking for concrete pour. Understanding the specific requirements of
each application and consulting with experts in the field will ensure the selection of the appropriate steel thickness and gauges for your project. By prioritizing these considerations and adhering to industry best practices, you can create a robust and reliable building structure that meets all safety and performance standards. Oates Metal Deck would love the opportunity to assist in your next project that requires steel decking. Please give us a call 713-475-0427 or fill out the form below. We look forward to hearing from you.