Many different materials can be used to make furniture, but wood and metal are two of the most mainstream. And among all the metals, steel is the most common.
Which one should you choose? As a furniture company with 30 years of experience, we can give you some insights. But before that, we would like to impress you visually. Here's an example of one of our products:
Click the link to check the product in detail: https://www.kemeisteel.com/
OK, let’s jump into the comparison.
1. About environment and human health
Steel cabinet hardly contain any volatile harmful substances, while wooden furniture needs to be painted on the surface, which will cause harmful substances such as formaldehyde to diffuse into the environment.
You might be curious by asking: wait, do steel cabinet not need to be painted? No, they really don't. They use a technique called powder coating, which works by spraying electrostatically charged powder onto the surface of the furniture and is considered as more environmentally friendly. That's because it does not contain solvents or volatile compounds that can be harmful to the environment and human health.
This is the environment testing result from one of our products. You can clearly see that harmful compositions like Volatile Organic Compounds and formaldehyde are undetectable:
Wood furniture on the other hand, often uses traditional wet paint to treat the surface. They usually contain harmful chemicals like lead, cadmium, and formaldehyde. Yes, technologies are developing, and some wooden furniture can also be environmentally friendly and healthy, but it is only those minimally processed and organic wood types that can make it. And the price of such furniture will be 2 to 3 times that of steel furniture.
2. About moisture impact
Steel does not absorb moisture thus no changes in characteristics, and with the surface treated by powder coating, it is well protected and neither susceptible to rust. Wooden furniture on the other hand is prone to damp and mildew. And it is also more likely to get contaminated by dirt or microorganism after ingesting water. And once getting dirty it is harder to clean, as dirty things will be hidden deep or embedded in the texture gaps.
3. Life cycle
The average lifespan of steel furniture is around 20-30 years, according to the Steel Recycling Institute, while the service life of wooden furniture can vary widely depending on the type of wood. Some hardwood species are really durable and can last for decades or even centuries, but like said above, they are expensive. As for most ordinary wood types, they have a lifespan of around 10-15 years.
And "lifecycle" is not just about how long they can be used. It involves the “after life” of the furniture. Steel is a highly recyclable material, while wooden furniture typically ends up in landfills.
For us at Kemei, we make our cabinet last a long time by putting in what we produce skilled workmanship and implementing strict quality inspection. We have a very meticulous production process, with each step interlocking with each other. We pay much attention to details, and never be sloppy.