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How Much Do Steel Beams Cost?

Typical Range: $1,267 - $4,974

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Steel I-Beam Prices

Installing steel beams costs $3,052 on average, with most homeowners paying between $1,267 and $4,974 (including labor). Prices could run anywhere from $300 to $9,000, depending on the type of project. Expect a higher project quote if you need to replace a load-bearing wall.

Steel I-beams are standard in commercial and industrial construction as they are fire-, pest- and rot-resistant. However, steel beams have grown increasingly popular in residential construction. Installing one in your home is an excellent way to increase the strength of your structure while opening walls and supporting heavier building materials such as masonry.

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National Average $3,052
Typical Range $1,267 - $4,974
Low End - High End $300 - $9,000

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Cost data is based on actual project costs as reported by 81 HomeAdvisor members in .

Cost of Steel Beams Per Foot

Installing steel beams costs $100 to $400 per foot. This includes labor and materials for the installation but not additional services, such as removing a wall.

Here are some of the additional costs you might encounter:

Since your project may or may not require these extra components, it’s a good idea to talk to a general contractor near you. They’ll provide you with project details and an estimate.

Steel I-Beams Price List

Steel I-beams by themselves range from $6 to $20 per foot (materials only).

Steel I-Beam LengthPrice Range
10 feet$60 - $180
20 feet$120 - $360
30 feet$180 - $540
40 feet$240 - $720
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Steel Beam Cost Per Pound

Steel beams cost between $0.90 and $1.60 per pound. I-beams typically weigh between 6 and 12 pounds per foot but could weigh up to 50 pounds or more. Heavier beams are common in industrial or commercial construction.

The main determination of price when it comes to a steel I-beams is not its design or length, but rather the height and weight per linear foot of the beam. An 8x17 I-beam is 8 inches high and weighs 17 pounds per linear foot. It will cost less than a 10x35 I-beam.

Either beam can be cut to any length. However, it is important to note the differences and functions of designs to know which will work best for your particular project.

Supporting Beam Cost

Steel supporting beams run from $100 to $400 per foot, including installation. Support beams come in a number of materials other than steel, including wood or LVL (laminated veneer lumber).

Average Cost of Support Beam Replacement

Replacing a main or basement support beam could cost anywhere from $6,500 to $25,000 or more. If you need to replace a beam in a crawl space, you’ll likely only pay between $1,500 and $4,000. These beams are typically smaller and don’t bear as much weight, which makes them easier to replace.

One thing to note is that because steel beams are so durable, you might never need to replace them. A properly installed beam can easily last 200 years or more. Other materials (such as wood) don’t last nearly as long.

Steel Beam House Construction Cost

Taking down a load-bearing wall in your house and putting a steel beam in its place runs from $4,000 to $10,000 on average. Homeowners take on this project to create an open concept and create more space.

Basement Support Beams Cost

Expect to pay between $1,270 and $4,950 to install a basement support beam for the first time (such as during a new home construction). If needing to replace a basement beam, you could pay anywhere from $6,500 to $25,000 but less complex jobs won’t cost more than $10,000.

Steel Column Prices

Steel columns usually range from $50 to $100 for just the column. They are often seen in basements as a permanent fixture but are sometimes put in place for support (such as for removing a load-bearing wall).

Steel Girder Cost

Steel girders are a type of structural beam and cost between $6 and $20 per foot, not including installation. While often considered the same thing as a steel beam, girders are typically larger than your average beam and provide horizontal support.

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Steel Structural Beam Prices vs. Other Materials

Type of BeamAverage Cost Range Per Linear Foot*
Steel$6 - $20
Wood$5 - $30
LVL$3 - $12
Aluminum$13 - $30

*Materials only

Wood I-Beam Cost

Most wood beams run from $5 to $30 per linear foot but could cost upwards of $90 per linear foot for rarer types of wood. Whereas they once were the main type of structural beam, homeowners nowadays often use wood beams as decoration.

Unlike standard, rectangular prism-shaped wood beams, I-beams made of wood will often require a material price quote. Find a ceiling contractor in your area to get an estimate.

Aluminum I-Beam Prices

Aluminum I-beams average between $13 and $30 per linear foot, though some styles run up to $140 or more. More expensive models are thicker and taller and usually aren’t found in residential construction.

LVL Beam Cost Per Foot

LVL beams cost between $3 to $12 per linear foot for just the material, or $50 to $200 per foot installed. “LVL” stands for laminated veneer lumber and is a type of engineered beam.

Flitch Beam Cost

Flitch beam prices vary, so you’ll have to talk to a contractor or home builder near you for an estimate. This type of beam has a steel interior, sandwiched between wood. The material itself costs less than steel but installation is more difficult than traditional wood beams. Because of this, flitch beams are less popular in construction.

Cost of Engineered Beams

Engineered beams typically range from $3 to $40 per linear foot. The most common engineered materials are LVL or Glulam, which are both made of wood laminate. One advantage to engineered beams is that they take less time to install, but they still don’t last as long as steel.

DIY Steel Beam Installation vs. Hiring a Professional

Steel beams require professional sizing and installation. Because you’re dealing with structural engineering, this is not a DIY project. An engineer should not only size your beams but also ensure that the placement is correct for both inspection and security purposes. Contact a residential structural engineer near you for a quote.

FAQs

How much does structural steel cost?

Structural steel for steel buildings costs between $15 and $30 per square foot. Steel prices are subject to the fluctuations of the market and worldwide demand. Supply and demand influences the cost of the material. When there is a lot of steel available and not many people are using it, prices are low. When lots of projects require it all at once, the opposite is true.

How much does Better Header cost?

Better Header flitch plate header prices depend on the project. The New York-based company can provide estimates for jobs in their area.

How much does a Lally column cost?

A Lally column is at least $2,500. Prices depend on the workspace and type of existing beams. Lally columns are common in basements and provide structural support.

What are LiteSteel beam prices?

LiteSteel beam prices run from $5 to $20 per foot or more. These galvanized steel beams are lighter than traditional steel.

What’s the difference between I-Beams, H-Beams and S-Beams?

H- and S-beams are actually types of I-beams. They get their name based on the design and what letter it roughly resembles.

H-beams are also called W-beams. They lack any sort of tapered flange at the top and base, thus resembling the letter "H" when laid on its side. H-beams are generally wider than I-beams and are much heavier. Because they are stronger, H-beams are able to bear weight at longer lengths for up to 330 feet.

S-beams are most commonly found in residential construction. Notable for their tapered flanges at the top and base, these are also known as Junior beams. The tapered edges of the S-beam supply greater strength at lighter densities. Ideally, this mix works well for smaller buildings where the structural support to the wall does not need to be as strong. S-beams are usually available in lengths up to 100 feet.

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