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Steel framing has several advantages for home builders. Steel is lightweight, easy to install, and cost-competitive; it has a uniform structure, dimensional stability, and it is resistant to fire and decay. But steel has one major drawback — some would call it a fatal flaw: poor thermal performance. Some builders try to compensate for steel's thermal problems by building thicker walls with more insulation. But wall assemblies lose heat through the framing as well as through the insulation, and steel studs conduct heat 300 to 400 times faster than wood. The picture is far from complete, but current information shows that steel framing has a large negative effect on a home's energy performance. How Much Heat Loss? "Metal studs significantly