If you’re an industrial worker, or the nature of your job is related to electricity, sharp objects, chemicals and the likes of it, then you probably wear safety work boots almost everyday.
Safety work boots are a must-have for manual labor workers and people who do construction work that requires the use of safety gears. Literally, safety work boots are highly important because they ensure safe movement in the work site and prevent work hazards such as acid burns, electric shocks, skin damage due to chemicals, wounds from broken glass shards, and many more injuries that may occur at work sites.
Now, wearing safety work boots is not the problem, the question is which work boots should you wear? Aluminum or steel?. In this article, I’ll be explaining the differences between various safety work boots so you can easily make a choice on the one that will suit you best.
Is Aluminum Toe The Same As Steel Toe Work Boots?
Aluminum toe work boots came after the steel toe safety work boots and it’s just as strong as the former. However, there are certain differences in their build and composition as the aluminum toe is much lighter in comparison to the steel.
The lighter weight of the aluminum toe is an advantage because it facilitates swift and easy movement of the legs, however it cannot stand compression or heavy falling objects. It’s durability and strength is in a close range with the steel toe boots(they are both long-lasting).
The steel toe is one of the oldest safety gears for the feet and has been used for a very long time due to its highly durable and protective features. It’s a reliable and dependable toe and feet reinforcement because of it’s high assistance to compression.
Steel toe is much heavier than the aluminum and it’s weight can be seen as uncomfortable to some people. However, it offers more protection than the aluminum toe due to the fact that the steel toe can effectively protect the feet from very heavy falling objects, from forceful blows to the feet, cuts from chainsaws and even grinders.
The steel toe uses a heavy duty steel for the toe box and also provides protection for the sole of the feet by using a hardy mid-sole plate. The aluminum and steel toe boots are of different prices although the steel toe is relatively cheaper.
Aluminum Toe Vs Steel Toe
The aluminum and steel toe are both excellent choices for feet safety gears and work boots. They have basic differences and features(the aluminum toe is lighter) but they are both quite functional and effective. Let’s analyze them under their main features:
both the aluminum and steel toe offers adequate protection depending on the need of the wearer. However, the steel toe can withstand more pressure and resist compression compared to the aluminum. Be rest assured that your feet is safe in any of them as they can both withstand high pressure or forceful contact and have both passed the ASRM 75 standard that is recommend for safety work boots.
Now these two safety gears are known for their wear and tear resistance Meaning that they are highly durable and gives the wearer a good value for their money. However in the long run, the steel toe tends to outlast the aluminum toe since it is made from a more dense metal.
Comfort and ease of movement:
Steel is much heavier than aluminum which automatically makes the aluminum toe much lighter than the steel toe; relatively making the aluminum toe better for movement, flexibility, and motion around the worksite. Many workers find the aluminum toe boots more comfortable to move around in for long hours while some workers are used to the weight of the steel toe as they’ve been using it for a long time.
Both Aluminum and steel toe are recommended by OSHA as tested and trusted safety work boots so you’re getting a good value and quality regardless of the one you choose to buy.
Is Alloy Toe The Same As Steel Toe?
While both alloy and steel toe are good protectors from industrial hazards, they differ a little in their features. If there’s a regular occurrence of falling objects, molten metal, acids etc in your workplace, steel toes would be a better choice. However, for people who work long hours at a stretch, alloy toes would be much more comfortable because prolonged wearing of steel toes can lead to discomfort around the feet as it has tighter toe room than the alloy and has more weight.
Alloy are insulators, meaning that your feet would be at room temperature regardless of the surrounding temperature or weather. Steel toes on the other hand are conductors of heat or cold and would reflect the surrounding temperature which may not be convenient for you.
Also, if you’re looking for a pocket friendly safety boot, steel toes are your go-to option because they’re cheaper than alloy boots.
Difference Between Alloy And Steel Toe Work Boots
The first and most noticeable difference between Alloy and Steel toe is that the steel toe has more weight and is much heaver than the Alloy Toe(which is very light).
Steel toe safety boots are not really good insulators. Extreme weather conditions or other factors that might lead to temperature change can affect your feet and make them uncomfortable if you’re wearing a steel toe work boot. On the hand, the alloy toe is a good insulator and is not affected by temperature change in the environment.
because of the thick and heavy metal used to make the toe cap in steel toe boots, there is a smaller toe room than it’s alloy counterpart which has a much thinner composition, hence a wider toe room.
Steel is denser than alloy and more resistant to puncture by sharp objects. It can also resist damages from very heavy falling objects unlike the alloy toe boots which can be damaged by forceful impact.
Steel boots are cheaper and more affordable than the alloy toe safety boots.
If you’re new to safety boots, try out an aluminum boot first as it provides more comfort. The above descriptions and highlights of both types of safety boots should be enough to guide you in making your purchase.
The point is, both safety boots serve their major function which is protection.