Steel Manufacturing Blog: Keeping it Steel

Thermal Break Cutting and Steel Fabrication

Posted on Tue, Jun 30, 2020 @ 12:49 PM

Thermal Break Bearings have become a more and more common element used in steel fabricating plans. These products are insulators, meaning that they do not easily conduct heat or energy. As such, they are used to stop heat from transferring between steel members or escaping from the wider building envelope.

Thermal Break Bearing Diagram - Horizontal Fixture             Thermal Break Bearing Diagram - Vertical Fixture

Though Thermal Break Bearings add to the overall cost of a project, they pay for themselves over the lifetime of the structure. For example, commercial refrigeration projects will frequently use Thermal Break Bearings in order to retain energy inside of the structure, thereby lowering the cost of maintaining requisite temperatures.


Certain projects may strive to be LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) qualified, in which case Thermal Break Bearings can be used in conjunction with solar panels, energy efficient lighting and proper insulation to attain energy efficiency, or even independence. The result of becoming LEED qualified can increase rent or sales prices for any given project.


Thermal Break Washers and BushingsIn addition to bearings, Thermal Break Washers and Bushings are other energy insulating products that are becoming more frequently used. While a Thermal Break Bearing blocks the bulk of the energy that would otherwise transfer through the connection, structural steel bolts can still conduct some energy via steel on steel contact. To mitigate this, one Thermal Break Washer and one Thermal Break Bushing are usually sufficient to negate any noticeable energy transfer. In some cases, however, plans do require 2 of each per bolt which adds further cost.


As its commercial success continues and it becomes further integrated into architecture and engineering curriculums, it is expected the use of Thermal Break Bearings will proliferate in the future. In all cases requiring Thermal Break Bearings, as well as Slide Bearings, Elastomeric Bearings, or any type of structural or miscellaneous steel application The Steel Supply Company has the people and capability to assist in your estimating process and provide consistent, quality bearings on time and on budget.

Tags: Teflon Thermal Breaks, Bearings, Thermal Break