What Exactly Is Stainless Steel? - The Hardware Hut
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What Exactly Is Stainless Steel?

The What

Stainless steel is a steel alloy with high percentages of iron, chromium, and nickel. The higher the chromium content, the more corrosion resistance there is. While it sounds complicated, the most widely known grade of stainless steel is type 304, which you’ll see anywhere. Meanwhile, type 316 has the addition of molybdenum, which aids better resistance to acid and chloride solutions (think salt, sodium chloride). You’ll often times hear type 316 referred to as marine grade stainless.

Stainless steel resists corrosion and staining, provides strength and resistance, and needs little maintenance to function. Since it can be cleaned and sterilized with no need for a top coating, it’s a perfect material for using in kitchens. It’s also 100% recyclable, with the average stainless steel item being made of around 60% recycled material.

The Where

You’ll find stainless steel used in a variety of applications. In architecture, you’ll find it on the exterior of buildings like the Petronas Twin Towers in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia (type 316) or the Gateway Arch in St. Louis (type 304). In the doctor’s office, you’ll see it in surgical tools, surgical implants, and needles. In the kitchen, you’ll see it in cutlery, cookware and bakeware, sinks, and the surfaces of appliances and backsplashes.

Did you know the DeLorean car used type 304 stainless on the body panels?

The How

Now that you understand a little about what stainless steel is and does, it’s time to visit TheHardwareHut.com. We offer a large variety of products in type 304 and type 316, as well as other grades. You’ll find cabinet knobs, cabinet pulls, hinges, appliance pulls, barn door track, door stops, hooks, closet rods & brackets, deadbolts, doorbell buttons, door lever sets, waste containers, house letters & numbers, kickplates, door pulls, catches, mail slots, mailboxes, tubing and railing, grab bars, shower seats, drawer slides, bath hardware, and towel warmers

If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to contact us or connect with on social media.

About the author
In 2002, Johnny Quinn joined TheHardwareHut.com in Customer Service. He and his husband own three properties they rent as part of their retirement plans. When not in the office, you might find him in an airport heading out on a fun adventure. He's been to Italy, Australia, and Peru with plans of heading to Thailand next.