Steel pipes in the Philippines are often stacked up with wooden boards, other bits of metal, and other paraphernalia; that’s you know there’s a construction going on. Sometimes there’s piles of cement on the road, or dug up soil and even slabs of concrete if the previous structure built on the land is being torn down. There will also be different kinds and shapes of bars of steel stacked somewhere in or even out of the construction site, waiting to be carried off and used by the workers.


Those different kinds of bars of metals have different uses in construction. They are called structural steels. Here are some of the different kinds of structural steels used in construction.


Flat bars

As the name suggests, it’s a flat bar of metal that makes up most of the skeleton of a building. Because of its shape, it can be easily cut, drilled and welded, and are usually already cut before it reaches the site.


Round bars

They are cylindrical bars, and is used for grates, frames, stakes and fences.


Angle bars

Angle bars are bars of steel bent to form an angle. They are used to reinforce edges and corners, and help whatever structure being built to stay in shape. Support for frames and shelves is another use for angle bars.


Channel bars

This is a common building material used for trailers and framing.


Square tubing

Square tubing is also referred as HSS or Hollow Structural Section, and SHS, structural hollow section. But hollow structural sections can also be circular or pipes, and rectangular. They are most commonly used in metal frames and beams, and are ideal for columns, and have good resistance against torsion.


Expanded Metal Mesh

Fences, decks, cans, and fences are made from metal mesh, which you can see through and can be as good as a full sheet of steel.


Tool steels

These are special kinds of steel that are made of mix of metals to improve certain properties. The improvement of some specific properties make tool steels ideal for creating tools that are used for forging other materials. Like the name suggests, it is used to make tools, such as drills, machine components, roller bearings, etc. tool steels have high carbon content since tools will be used with great force repeatedly.



These are cold formed steel bars used in roofs for structural support. They can be hollow, like the square tubing, shaped in a C or Z form.



They are also known as H-beams or W-beams, and are used for industrial and commercial construction, such as stadiums, high rise skyscrapers, but also residential construction. It provides support for other beams that support a massive amount of weight.


Much like any other item, steel comes in many different shapes and sizes. Knowing what each type is for and what they are for can help enhance your construction skills.