Which One to choose? - Steel Toe or Composite Toe
Both Steel Toe Cap and Composite Boots offer vital impact and compression resistance. Choosing between them depends on the risks and working conditions at play. Both offer unique benefits that should be considered when making a purchasing decision.
Steel Toe Cap Boots
Steel toe boots are reinforced with heavy duty steel to protect feet from multiple hazards including crushing, falling objects and puncturing. Canada standards specify a steel cap must offer 200 joules of protection.
- Higher flat protection than composite boots making them preferable for environments with very heavy hazards such as chainsaws or grinders.
- Good value – often cheaper than composite boots which cost more to manufacture.
- Can be heavier than composite boots – less suited for lots of walking. However, in recent times steel toe cap boots have become significantly lighter and more comfortable.
- Set off metal detectors – not recommended for those regularly passing security checks with metal detectors.
Composite Toe Cap Boots
Composite Toe Boots are made from non-metal materials such as thermoplastic polyurethane (TPU) or carbon fiber. Just like steel toe caps, to meet Canadian Safety Standards, they must offer 200 joules of protection.
- Offer a high level of comfort and are usually lighter than steel toe cap boots – preferable for those walking a lot or on their feet for long hours.
- Metal free so do not set off metal detectors – time saving for workers who frequently pass metal detectors at security check points.
- Increased electrical resistance – desirable for those working around live wires.
- Do not conduct heat as much as steel – composite boots keep your feet cooler in hot weather and warmer in cold weather.
- Cannot withstand as much force as a steel toe and puncture protection is not as strong.
- Can be more expensive.
Steel toe cap boots are highly economical and preferable when hazards are exceptionally heavy. While choose the composite toe boots who you need a lighter shoe, regularly pass metal detectors or work near live wires or in extreme temperatures.