Steel vs. Aluminum Ornamental Fencing

Ornamental metal fencing has evolved over time due to the advances in technology and availability of raw materials. This type of fencing often called Wrought Iron is frequently mispronounced “rod iron fence.” Wrought Iron or “commercial iron” was prevalent in the days before mild steel came into production. Wrought meaning worked by hand described how this crude metal with a low carbon content and fibrous inclusions, known slag were manipulated by blacksmiths. While wrought iron is tough, malleable, ductile and easily welded, in reality it is no longer a material used for fencing.

In the 21st century the most common metals used for ornamental fencing are steel and aluminum.


While there are certainly a nice variety of fencing styles the major drawback for this material is strength. Uncoated Aluminum certainly performs better than steel in the category of red rust and resistance to salt spray for fencing in direct contact with the ocean.


The state of the art coatings on steel ornamental fencing offset the risk of rust and corrosion prevalent in the true wrought iron fencing. And the strength and durability of these panels and gates is far superior to aluminum.