How can I choose a good steel merchant or supplier?

Steel merchants are traders who buy and sell steel and allied products. Steel merchants may be both dealers in steel products and also steel fabricators. When you are looking for a steel supplier though – how do you know what to look for?


Most importantly look for a steel supplier who can deliver industry-leading steel product made to Australian standards. You don’t want to have your manufacturing or construction project delayed through quality control problems or defective products. Always look for a supplier who can guarantee steel which has been produced using stringent quality management systems and testing procedures, and which meets one or more of the appropriate quality standards.

Steel products should be inspected and tested to comply with one or more of the following standards:

  • Quality Management Systems AS/NZS ISO 9001
  • NATA accredited test facilities to ISO/IEC 17025
  • Structural – AS/NZS 1163 Structural steel hollow sections
  • Precision – AS1450
  • ALLGAL standard AS4750 Electro – galvanised (zinc) coating on ferrous hollows and open sections
  • Low pressure water/gas pipe – to AS1074 and ASTM A 53/A 53M tubes and tubulars for standard service
  • Fire Sprinkler pipe CSIRO ActivFire approved to comply with FAS 119/120 and AS4118.2.1
  • Oil and Gas linepipe API Specification 5L
  • Casing & Tubing – API 5CT and AS1396 Steel water bore casing


Steel products should be competitively priced, however if pricing appears too good to be true – then you’re probably looking at a substandard product. Always approach a bargain with caution and ensure that the product in question has met the appropriate testing requirements.

Customer service

Always look for a steel supplier with a good customer service mindset and track record. Look for a steel merchant with the reputation of following through on their supply and delivery commitments, as you don’t want to deal with a supplier who could let you down. Look for a steel merchant who tries their hardest to provide you with clear and accurate information, and who helps you minimise any red tape.

Product range

Look for a metal supplier with a large range of products, a business that will be able to meet all your steel and metal supply needs. Ideally your steel merchant will be apply to supply RHS, SHS, and CHS structural tubular steel, hot rolled structural steel, piping and a variety of fencing, roofing and building accessories. Many steel merchants will be able to measure, quote and fabricate to order.

Distribution and delivery

A good steel merchant will be able to deliver to any location you need. Steel fabricators and distributors will have distribution centres in most states and major cities, or will be supported by local distributors and re-sellers around Australia.

Innovation and technical ability

A good steel merchant or steel fabricator is not just a sales outlet but a valuable business partner. Clever businesses are constantly working to improve their product range to meet and anticipate industry advances and customer needs. Look for a steel supplier who has the innovative mindset and technical know-how to deliver the newest and best steel and metal products to you.

Industry word of mouth is a great way to find a good steel merchant or supplier, ask around or look online to find a supplier that will suit your needs.


Yellow Pages. (2015, May). How Can I Choose a Good Steel Merchant or Supplier? Yellowpages.com.au. https://www.yellowpages.com.au/articles/steel-supplies-and-merchants/how-can-i-choose-a-good-steel-merchant-or-supplier