Metal Shelving vs. Wood Shelving: Which is Best

If you’re looking to add some more storage to your home, business, or storage facility, you have a lot of options available to you. From the style to the size to the materials, the possibilities are endless.

If you’ve narrowed it down to shelving, but still can’t decide between wood or metal, we’re here to help. Read on to compare metal shelving versus wood shelving, and decide which one is best for you.

Wood Shelving

Wood shelving is the nature made option when choosing what kind of shelving to use. It’s been around for hundreds and hundreds of years, and you’ll find it in most older houses and buildings. But while it might be the original material to use for shelving, that doesn’t automatically make it the best.

Wood shelving looks great and makes great shelving options for inside your house. It can be easily formed and cut to your specific needs, and the wide range of types of wood make your options limitless.

However, wood is not as well insulated and can be a victim to cracking, warping, and bowing. It’s also not as strong as metal shelving, and not quite as durable. 

Wood shelving is often the better choice for decorative shelving, or for small items inside, such as bookshelves and small pantries. It’s a beautiful, multifaceted material, and should be taken advantage of.

Metal Shelving

Metal shelving takes over where wood just doesn’t hold up to the pressure. Metal is known for its durability and strength, which is why it is often the go-to material for factories, kitchens, and other places where you need to hold a lot of weight for a long period of time. 

Because metal is crafted out of liquid, it can be formed however you need it to be. This makes it great for a variety of shelving needs.

There are a lot of different types of metal shelving such as industrial wire shelving, kitchen shelving which often has wheels, or smaller shelving that you find in closets or offices. Even file cabinets could be considered metal shelving.

The disadvantage of metal shelving is that it doesn’t look nearly as good as wooden shelving, and it’s also susceptible to corrosion. IF your shelving is going to be in an area that sees a lot of moisture, you’ll need to have a special finish, which can be pretty expensive. While wood can be affected by water as well, protecting it from moisture is a lot less expensive.

The Bottom Line

When it comes down to it, the question of metal shelving versus wood shelving can really be answered by what you’re using it for. If you need strong, durable, and cheap shelving, then metal is the way to go. If you want to create a more natural look, and something that might stand up to the elements a little better, go with wood. The choice is yours. 

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