Top 5 Comparisons Between Quonset Huts and Metal Buildings 2024

Quonset Huts vs Metal Buildings

Are you feeling defeated while trying to decide whether to invest in a Quonset Hut or a regular Metal Building?

You’re probably asking:

“How do I even begin?”

You start by understanding the fundamental differences between Quonset Huts and Metal Buildings. Once you have accomplished this, you’ll have all you need to make your final decision.

Luckily for you, all that you need to know is right here.

In this guide, you’ll find a comprehensive side-by-side comparison of Quonset Huts vs Metal Buildings.

You can be confident that all the essential features are covered including price, versatility, and durability.

So if you’re ready, let’s begin!

What’s in this guide?

What are Quonset Huts?

You might not know the name, but I’m guessing you’ve seen Quonset Huts before.

Mainly, they are pre-designed corrugated steel buildings that are budget-friendly and easily assembled.

Quonset Huts are famous for their semi-cylindrical shape which prove to be a durable barrier against adverse weather conditions such as heavy rain and snow.

Additionally, Quonset Huts are built to be entirely self-supporting structures suitable for a wide range of uses, including living in a Quonset Hut, industrial, and even for the military.

The fact that Quonset Huts don’t require internal beams means that you receive more floor space.

As a result, many people prefer Quonset Huts over Metal Buildings due to their affordability, durability and simple set-up.

But do Quonset Huts offer more benefits than Metal Buildings?

To determine the answer, you need to consider certain important factors such as Price, Construction, Space, Durability and Insulating Properties.

Keep on reading to find out whether Quonset Huts are the better choice, through a side-by-side comparison with Metal Buildings regarding all of these characteristics.


Quonset Huts

In general, Quonset Huts offer a lower cost per square footage, from $6-$12/sq.ft because they are already pre-built in the uniform semi-cylindrical shapes which allow manufacturers to pass the savings on to you.

However, this price only applies to structures up to 40×60 square feet or the size of a large building.

At this point, you should expect prices to be on par with metal buildings.

Metal Buildings

Metal Buildings, or rigid frame buildings, tend to cost more at $16-$20/sq.ft due to them not being pre-made like Quonset Huts. They need to be adapted to your specific requirements, plus additional insulation and finishing touches could bring the cost up to $30-$40/sq.ft.

In short, metal buildings have a higher initial cost than Quonset huts.

But if you are looking to construct a large-sized building or want a specific design, then metal buildings are a better option.


Quonset Huts

The main advantage of Quonset Huts is that they offer a straightforward set-up procedure. Seeing as they are already sold as pre-made self-supporting structures, all you need to do is attach the semi-circular beams to complete the final building.

No internal columns nor skilled labour are required, as you can quickly complete the construction by yourself.

Plus, once your Quonset Hut has been set up, it won’t require much maintenance, and you’ll have the freedom to focus elsewhere.

Metal Buildings

On the other hand, metal buildings require professional labour to assemble the structure correctly.

There are far more parts such as I-Beams, purlins, or girts that need to be carefully put together. Otherwise, the building would lose its structural integrity.

Although they are more complicated to construct, Metal Buildings provide a much stronger connection due to their rigid steel frames and strong internal beams.

This gives them an edge over Quonset Huts regarding durability and stability.

Space and Expansion

Quonset Huts

As a result of their structure, Quonset Huts are easily expandable lengthwise since all you need to do is attach another 2’ piece to the end of your structure.

Together with the fact that Quonset Huts don’t have any internal beams or columns, you will receive more floor space where larger objects (such as planes) would be able to fit comfortably.

Nevertheless, due to its arched style, Quonset Huts provide less roof space than Metal Buildings.

This is a problem if you need to store tall objects such as large tractors or other equipment. Quonset Huts are also limited in span to 80 feet, which places a further restriction on storing large objects.

Metal Buildings

Metal Buildings offer multiple designs that have the versatility to serve different purposes depending on your uses, from residential to commercial.

They also offer the ability to build more stories upwards, as well as a wider span limit of up to 300 feet, which is excellent news if you require that amount of space.


Quonset Huts

Their steel and design make Quonset Huts able to withstand adverse weather such as heavy snow, floods, and even earthquakes.

But their lack of internal infrastructure and sole reliance on self-supporting beams means that Quonset Huts aren’t as durable and sturdy as metal buildings.

Also, Quonset Huts only qualify for a 30-year warranty if you install a thick concrete foundation beneath the structure. This increases the cost further.

Metal Buildings

Because of their rigid steel frames and internal columns, Metal Buildings are automatically more durable and resistant than Quonset Huts.

They also provide you with a longer warranty for your building of up to 50 years. What this means is that although Metal Buildings tend to be more costly, they offer more long-term benefits.


Quonset Huts

Unfortunately, Spray Foam insulation is the only type of insulation that Quonset Huts are compatible.

However, this isn’t necessarily a downside because the corrugated steel alloy used to make the Quonset Huts is typically made from materials that are up to 7 times more resistant to rust than regular galvanised steel that is used in Metal Buildings.

Metal Buildings

There is a much wider range of insulation options available to you for Metal Buildings including spray foam, rigid board, insulated panels, and loose filling.

This allows you to choose the most suitable insulation for your building and obtain long-term savings when you use energy-efficient insulation.

What Else Should I Consider if I Want to Buy a Quonset Hut?

The Climate

Though both Quonset Huts and Metal Buildings are highly durable and resistant to most weather conditions, Quonset Huts generally have weaker internal structures due to only using self-supporting parts and no internal beams.

But Quonset Huts provide environmental resistance and require less maintenance. Whereas Metal Buildings usually need further protection against leakage and condensation.

Your Timeframe

If you need to construct your building in a short time frame without sacrificing quality and structural integrity, then a Quonset Hut is your best choice.

They offer relatively easy assembly and don’t require skilled labour.

Additional Costs

Finally, you should also factor in any other costs such as installing a foundation, delivery, finishing, and further accessories such as skylights and doors.

Where can I Find Quonset Huts?

So, now that you know the main differences between Quonset Huts and metal buildings, where exactly can you find the best Quonset Hut kits?

Let’s take a quick look at some of your options.

1. SteelMaster


Type: Steel building provider

Location: Virginia

SteelMaster is a Virginia-based steel building provider, who offers prefabricated kits to their customers who focus on Quonset buildings for both residential and commercial purposes.

These types of buildings come in the form of prefabricated kits, which means that you could save significantly in terms of time and money because each of the separate parts will be manufactured elsewhere then brought to you for assembly.

✔ Garages

✔ Storage

✔ Agriculture

✔ Houses

✔ Pole Barns

✔ Sheds

✔ Workshops

2. U.S Buildings

U.S Buildings

Type: Steel building provider

Location: North Carolina

U.S Buildings has been around for over 30 years, with a state of the art facility which they use to manufacture high-quality steel buildings such as Quonset or ‘Q model’ buildings which are an excellent fit for temporary or agricultural buildings.

Their steel building specialists could provide you with a discount of up to 60%, that can be catered to your specific needs.

✔ Agriculture

✔ Pole Barns

✔ Storage

✔ Livestock storage

✔ Horse Barns

✔ Equipment storage

3. Curvco Steel Buildings


Type: Steel building provider

Location: Pennsylvania

Curvco is a Pennsylvania-based steel building provider who helps customers to not only design the structure of your dreams but also take care of the construction too.

They can offer their customers quick building times, a 40-year warranty on their structures and professional service with technical support.

✔ Industrial manufacturing

✔ Storage

✔ Workshops

✔ Livestock storage

✔ Equipment storage

✔ Commercial uses

4. Metal Building Kings

Metal Building Kings

Type: Steel building provider

Location: Florida

Metal Building Kings specialise in prefabricated steel buildings, with a combination of truss-systems as well as the strength of arched Quonset Huts.

The buildings that Metal Building Kings have on offer are made from 100% American steel, and you could benefit from a 40-year warranty and a guarantee for their low prices.

✔ Sports Arenas

✔ Garages

✔ Livestock storage

✔ Agriculture

✔ Schools

✔ RV storage

✔ Military buildings

5. American Steel Span

American Steel Span

Type: Steel building provider

American Steel Span creates both steel and other metal buildings which can be used for a variety of purposes such as for industrial or military uses.

They have over 38 years of experience and can provide their customers with Quonset Huts which are versatile, have a 40-year warranty and fast installation times.

✔ Military buildings

✔ Industrial

✔ Residential

✔ Storage

✔ Workshops

✔ Aircraft Hangars

✔ Auto mechanics


In conclusion, the best option for you might depend on several factors including things such as whether you need durability, insulation or a quick installation for instance.

Not found what you’re looking for?

Get in touch with us today for friendly, personalised advice to make the right decision for you.