fbpx Skip to main content

As a home builder or developer, selecting the ideal column materials for your projects is a crucial decision. Traditional column materials like wood, stone, and aluminum have long been favored choices. However, PVC column wraps have emerged as a viable alternative in recent years. In this blog post, we will compare PVC column wraps with aluminum, highlighting the pros and cons of each option. By understanding the differences, you can make an informed decision that aligns with your construction goals and satisfies the needs of your clients.

Pros of PVC Column Wraps:

Durability: PVC column wraps are exceptionally durable and resistant to various environmental factors such as moisture, rot, termites, and UV rays. They do not warp, crack, or peel over time, ensuring long-term structural integrity.

Low Maintenance: Unlike traditional column materials that may require regular staining, sealing, or repainting, PVC column wraps are virtually maintenance-free. They only need occasional cleaning with mild soap and water to retain their appearance.

Easy Installation: A new type of PVC column wrap was recently released that is designed for hassle-free installation. They are Snap-Tite® PVC column wraps. These wraps are lightweight, and simply snap together, saving time on installation and eliminating the need for a return trip the following day. They may just be the easiest column wraps to assemble that are currently on the market!

Versatility in Design: PVC column wraps offer a wide range of design options. They are available in various styles and finishes, allowing builders to match different architectural aesthetics. Additionally, they can be customized to fit specific sizes and shapes, providing flexibility in design choices.

Cost-Effective: PVC column wraps are often more cost-effective compared to traditional column materials. They have a lower upfront cost, require minimal maintenance, and do not deteriorate over time, resulting in long-term savings.

Pros of Aluminum Columns:

Lightweight and Strong: Aluminum columns are lightweight, making them easier to handle and install. Despite their lightweight nature, they are incredibly strong and can provide excellent structural support and load-bearing capabilities.

Corrosion-Resistant: Aluminum is highly resistant to corrosion, making it suitable for outdoor applications and areas with high moisture levels. It does not rust or deteriorate over time, ensuring its longevity.

Aesthetic Appeal: Aluminum columns offer a modern and sleek appearance that can complement contemporary architectural designs. They can be finished with various coatings and finishes to achieve the desired aesthetic.

Low Maintenance: Similar to PVC column wraps, aluminum columns require minimal maintenance. They do not require painting or staining and can be cleaned easily with soap and water.

Cons of PVC Column Wraps:

Authenticity: Some builders and homeowners prefer the authenticity and natural beauty of traditional column materials, such as wood or stone. PVC column wraps may not provide the same level of authenticity or originality, especially in historically significant or high-end projects.

Non-Load Bearing: Unlike aluminum columns, PVC column wraps serve simply an aesthetic purpose, offering no load bearing capabilities. These wraps are meant to wrap the load-bearing post on a porch or overhang only.

Impact Resistance: PVC column wraps may not offer the same level of impact resistance as materials like concrete, stone, or aluminum. In areas prone to accidental collisions or heavy impact, alternative materials may be more suitable.

Cons of Aluminum Columns:

Higher Cost: Aluminum columns can often be more expensive than PVC column wraps, especially for larger projects. The higher material cost may impact the overall budget.

Limited Design Options: While aluminum columns are often available in a variety of colors, they typically do not have the same options for texture variations that PVC might have. Customization could be more limited when trying to match specific architectural aesthetics.

When deciding between PVC column wraps and traditional column materials like aluminum, there are several factors to consider. PVC column wraps offer advantages in terms of durability, low maintenance, easy installation, and cost-effectiveness. On the other hand, aluminum columns offer benefits such as lightweight strength, corrosion resistance, aesthetic appeal, and low maintenance. It’s essential to evaluate factors such as authenticity, impact resistance, cost, and design options based on your project requirements, aesthetic preferences, and budget constraints. By carefully considering these factors, you can make an informed decision that aligns with your clients’ expectations and construction goals.

Interested in getting a column quote from Superior Aluminum Products? We offer PVC, aluminum, and fiberglass columns. Email inquiries to info@superioraluminum.com.