How Does It Compare? The Difference Between 304 and 316 Stainless Steel

Stainless steel contains a fair amount of chromium that gives stainless steel its renowned corrosion resistance, in addition to the same basic iron and carbon makeup as all other steel.

The term “stainless steel” refers to a number of grades, each of which has a somewhat unique alloy composition and consequently unique physical properties.

A minimum of 10.5% chromium must be present in stainless steel. In addition to various alloying components like molybdenum, nickel, titanium, aluminium, copper, nitrogen, phosphorus, or selenium, the amount of chromium in it will vary according to the grade.

The Difference Between 304 VS 316

Stainless Steel 304 Pipes and 316 Pipes are austenitic, therefore they don’t have magnetic characteristics, but cold working can change that. There will be very little increase in the magnetic characteristics of the stainless steel when it is shaped or cut, although this is very slight.

The alloys found in stainless steel composition have a significant impact on how much it costs. All stainless steels must include a minimum of 10.5 percent chromium, and a significant component of their final composition is iron from the alloying process. However, the many additional components present have an effect on the qualities and, eventually, the price.
Since molybdenum is a more expensive element, it makes 316 a more expensive grade of metal overall. However, it makes Stainless Steel 316 Pipes far more corrosion-resistant than Stainless Steel 304 Pipes.

Resistance to corrosion
Even though the family of metals known as stainless steel has excellent corrosion resistance, the addition of molybdenum to grade 316 improves the material’s resistance to hostile conditions. 316, often known as marine grade, is appropriate for use in more abrasive settings than ambient, however, regular cleaning is still advised to increase the metal’s service life. Although 304 is less chloride-resistant than 316, it is still a cost-effective and reliable option.

Multipurpose uses of both grades
Nickel is used in stainless steels in the 300-series 304, 316, and other grades to preserve an austenitic composition at lower temperatures. Austenitic steels are perfect for outdoor architectural features, medical equipment, and food processing equipment because they provide a flexible blend of strength, workability, and corrosion resistance.
The long service life and the appealing, spotless surface of stainless steel grades are among its greatest advantages. Stainless steels that have been cleaned and maintained properly have minimal maintenance costs.

Hope this article covers the major differences between 304 stainless steel vs 316 stainless steel, to give you a basic understanding when it comes to choosing between these two grades. please refer to our products for more details or get in touch with us.