Should I Buy New or Used Steel Plates?

Steel plates are large, flat plates most commonly used to cover potholes, excavations, trenches, damaged pedestrian walkways, and roads that are under construction. They are also used along trench boxes during excavation for utility construction and repair. The purpose of a steel plate is to provide a temporary surface for traffic to pass over while construction is underway.

Where Do New and Used Steel Plates Originate?

New steel plates come directly from the manufacturer, while used (or surplus) steel plates come from a job site or other location where they’ve been previously used. Though this can mean the steel is old, dirty or corroded, surplus steel plates can occasionally be brand new or “like new.” In some cases, new steel plates might be sold as surplus if the steel was left over from another project in which it was not used or only lightly used.

Unlike used steel plates, new steel plates are manufactured in steel mills. The most common method used to make steel plates is by hot rolling. To do this, a steel slab is heated to 1,700 degrees Fahrenheit and passed through a series of rollers. Each set of rollers makes the slab thinner until the desired thickness is achieved. One the steel is the correct thickness, the plate is cooled to room temperature and cut to size or rolled into large coils.

Hot rolled steel is the cheapest “new” sheet steel available. However, cold rolled steel is another option. Cold rolled steel is created when a steel sheet that has previously been hot rolled is run through a second series of rollers without the addition of heat to create an even thinner sheet of steel.

Pros and Cons of Purchasing New Steel Plates

Some of the pros to purchasing new steel plates include:

• When purchasing new steel road plates, you’ll know the quality upfront.

• New steel plates have never been used before, meaning the structural integrity is known to be solid and there will be no wear and tear setbacks once construction begins.

• New steel comes with certifications.

The cons of purchasing new steel plates include:

• New steel road plates cost more than used steel.

• If purchasing from a manufacturer, it may take longer for the steel to be produced, and backlogs can occur.

Brand New Steel Plates for Sale

Pros and Cons of Purchasing Used Steel Plates

Some of the pros to purchasing used steel plates include:

• The price of used steel is lower than new, even for exactly the same product.

• Used steel plates are ready for immediate use, since they do not need to be manufactured.

• Used steel sometimes comes with mill certifications.

• Used steel still enables you to get a high quality result.

• Used steel plates are better for the environment (due to recycling).

Some of the cons of purchasing used steel plates include:

• Used steel has been used before, meaning it likely contains some wear and tear.

• Used steel cannot always be custom made to fit an exact project’s needs.

• Used steel plates are not guaranteed to come with certifications.

In many cases, surplus steel plates are just as effective as new plates and can be used successfully in its place.

Used Steel Plates for Sale

Buy and Sell with Eiffel Trading

Eiffel Trading is a one-stop-shop for your heavy civil needs! Our steel offerings include both new steel plates and used steel plates, used steel sheet pile, used steel sheet pile, and more. Furthermore, our equipment inventory ranges from sectional barges, to shoring towers, and everything in between.

All of our listings are constantly being updated, but if you don’t see what you’re looking for, create a wanted listing for free.

Ready to sell your used heavy equipment or construction material? List your products today for free on Eiffel Trading’s online marketplace.

If you have any questions or would like additional information, please call us at 1-800-541-7998 or email