Being in the architectural metal business since the 60’s means we’ve received a lot of questions over the years about weathered steel, aka “Corten”. Weathered steel first started to be used as architectural cladding in the mid 60’s. Its popularity declined for a number of years while architects and builders were struggling with the best ways to utilize it. However, in recent years weathered steel has made a strong comeback, and we are continually peppered with questions about best practices for usage, appearance, and long-term maintenance. Read on to see how we answer the top 10 most frequently asked questions about weathered steel!
Weathered steel, or Corten by its trademarked name, is a steel alloy containing copper, nickel, and chromium. Due to the combined properties of the metals, a corrosive barrier forms on the outside of the panel when exposed to weather conditions. This barrier has functional and aesthetic qualities. Not only does it protect the steel from further weathering and corrosion, it also creates a very natural rusted look.
Weathered steel has many different uses for exterior cladding.