The Complete Guide to Steel As a Building Material For Residential Home Construction in Kenya

Steel forms the backbone of a structure. It is one of the most important building materials of construction which significantly determines the strength and durability of a building structure.  Apart from the fact that steel is less expensive, secure, and more readily available, its unique properties like strength,100% recyclability, quality, and adaptability contribute to it being an important construction material taking into account improved environmental performance and sustainable building. Various types of steel as a building material for residential home construction in Kenya have been introduced with technological advancements like mild steel, TMT, alloy steel, etc.



Types of steel used for construction in Kenya

Here are some of  the steel types used in construction works for residential houses in Kenya;

 This type of steel is made from a detailed cross-section while adhering to strict mechanical and chemical composition norms. It is used to make structural steel shapes, this steel type is ductile, sturdy, and durable and can be molded into any shape depending on the construction. It is also fire resistant but fire protection should also be provided.

Some of the structural steel includes; L-beam, HSS- beam, T- beam, bars rods, rail profiles, etc.

  • Rebar steel

Also known as fortifying steel or reinforcing steel, this type of steel is used to strain devices in reinforced concrete or masonry structures. Rebar steel offers durability and aesthetic appeal as well as resistance and stiffness that extends across a large area hence why it is used for reinforcement purposes, due to its ability to be recycled, rebar is valuable and is available in a variety of grades and specifications including; plain steel wire for concrete reinforcement, stainless steel, TMT steel bars, plain bars, and rail steel deformed bars, etc.

  • Mild steel

Mild steel is the most prevalent type of steel used in building construction because of its strength. Commonly known as MS mild steel makes a solid long-lasting and strong foundation. t is extremely flexible and malleable and therefore can withstand natural disasters like earthquakes and collapsing or destruction because it does not break when bent.

This type of steel is constructed from thin sheets adhering to strict specifications cold deformed steel can be used to construct steel frames easily. In addition to side rails and purlins, light gauge steel can be used for load-bearing walls. Light gauge steel joists and studs are both flexible and safe and are also accessible in hardware stores.

Steel As a Building Material For Residential Home Construction in Kenya | Rebar steel in kenya

How to choose steel reinforcement for construction in Kenya/Steel As a Building Material For Residential Home Construction in Kenya

Concrete is weak in tensile strength therefore it depends on steel reinforcement for this property. Good reinforcement bars need to meet the tensile strength requirement for concrete structures. Below are important tips to consider when choosing steel reinforcement for construction;

  • Length of reinforcement bars

     It is better to order smaller pieces over long ones since the small ones can be bound together using tie wire, always determine the measurement or length of the reinforcement bars.

  • Size of the reinforcement bars

    Reinforcement bars are available in sizes from 6mm,8mm,10mm,12mm, and 16mm. Depending on where it is being used, reinforcement bars should be in the correct size whether it is a beam or column reinforcement.

  • Grades of steel

    Steel is available in different grades that is Fe 415, Fe 500 Fe 550 Fe 600. The numbers represent the yield strength, the higher the number the higher the yield strength.

  • Quality of reinforcement bars

    The quality of reinforcement bars is tested by the tensile strength, compression test, malleability test, and fatigue test. The bars should meet the stated specifications.



Steel has proven to be quite advantageous in terms of the rate of magnificent strong building structures made. Steel reinforcement is of utmost importance in building construction because of its unique feature of bonding well with concrete. Most importantly, the use of steel as a assures greater environmental friendliness than other building types.


99 Construction Guide
99 Construction Guide

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