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3 Fundamental Mistakes to Avoid When Working with Metal Stud Frames

Metal studs have been around for quite some time but builders still encounter some construction issues when using them. These mistakes can occur in both residential and commercial job sites, and it's not because the material is too complex to manage effectively. With a little training and knowledge of the fundamentals, beginners can easily avoid building errors.

We’ve rounded up three of the most overlooked and understated common errors when building with metal studs and the ways to avoid them.


The Common Mistakes and Solutions

Common Error #1: Misaligned knockout keyholes

This occurs when the frames are not cut on the same ends. It results in misaligned knockout keyholes, which is key to a neat-looking rough-in. Properly aligned knockouts enable the wires to thread a straight line and prevent them from drooping. If all the frames are cut on the same end, all the knockouts will sit at the same height, no matter how many there are.

Solution: Take the time to inspect the metal stud frames once you get them at the site. Also, take the time to install the special rubber bushings to protect the wires from damage, when you pull them through the knockouts. It may take a few minutes, depending on the number of studs you have. But metal studs are light and easy to organise and the bushings are easy to install. You’ll be done in no time. 


Common Error #2: Studs gapped at the floor and at the ceiling

This can happen when the frames are not cut to even and proper lengths. The metal stud should be in tight contact with both the top and the bottom tracks. The gaps that result from inconsistent lengths reduce the load-bearing capability of the framing member, causing the screws to bear the weight of the wall. This can lead to cosmetic and structural problems later.

Solution: Measure the floor to ceiling height accurately and use leveling tools to ensure even and accurate measurements. You’ll see how incredibly easy it is to install metal studs, especially when they fit snugly between the top and bottom channels. 


Common Error #3: Misaligned bolt holes

Some additional holes need to be made on the studs, either when splicing or joining overlapping frames together. These unfastened parts, if not held tightly in place, can slip out of place and cause the holes to become misaligned. This can damage the threading of a screw, resulting in weak points or worse, local damage. Problematic frames will weaken further over time and affect the integrity of the entire framing structure. This is a costly and time-consuming error, especially when it is only discovered during the later part of the building process.

Solution: To prevent misaligned holes on the metal studs, work on a level and stable surface to prevent the material from bending. It is important to use a locking clamp when securing spliced joints to keep them locked in place. This ensures a secure join and sturdy framing components.


Prevention is Better than Re-Work

These common metal framing mistakes are the easiest ones to commit and overlook but are also the easiest ones to prevent. Metal stud frames are fairly easy to use but it’s important to remember that this material behaves differently from traditional lumber studs. First-time users may take a little more time getting the hang of it.

To learn more about our metal stud framing products, call us on 020 8660 9119 or email us at We’ll be happy to help.

Posted: 13/09/2021