When it comes to stainless steel alloys, not all materials are created equal. Different alloys perform better or worse in specific applications. To ensure that you get the durability you need, pick the right alloy for the job. A few popular choices:
304 Stainless Steel
This is the most basic stainless steel alloy. It contains at least 8% nickel and 18% chromium, along with a maximum of .08% carbon. This steel is nonmagnetic. It must be cold worked. 304 resists oxidation and ordinary rust. However, it will tarnish over time. It is a food-safe stainless steel and is commonly used in milking machines, bakery equipment and brewing equipment.
317 Stainless Steel
If your parts will be used in a more severe environment, 317 offers a higher level of resistance to corrosion. This steel has a lower carbon content and is strenghtened with additions of chromium, molybdenum and nickel. It is resistant to sulphurous, formic, citric and acetic acid as well as exposure to chlorides, iodides and bromides that can cause damage to other metals.
310 and 310S Stainless Steel
These alloys are used for flanges, fittings and pipes in chemical processing, environmental and refining industrial settings. These alloys provide good service in high temperature conditions, with oxidation resistance up to 2000 F.
904L Stainless Steel
This steel alloy stands up to severe high corrosion conditions. It can be used in chemistry applications that include exposure to acetic acid, benzene, uranium oxide, zinc sulfite and other corrosive materials. It offers excellent resistance to stress corrosion cracking, pitting and other flaws.
By choosing the right material at fabrication, you may spend more up front. However, the right choice now will save you repair and replacement costs later on. Not sure which stainless steel alloy you need? Get in touch for a consulation.