Stainless Steel Vs Carbon Steel: Which Is Stronger?

February 23, 2023

Most items that are used in our daily life are made up of steel. But, this does not prove that all the items used are made of the same steel type. Different types of steel are used for different purposes. This article speaks about the difference between carbon steel and stainless steel. While both the steel types are quite similar in their appearance, there are several differences between the two that make them perfect for the work they are used in.


Let’s learn about the different steel types and the factors that separate them from one another.


How do steel dealers in India differentiate between Stainless steel and Carbon Steel?


Before one can jump into the differences, it is important to understand each steel type individually.


Stainless steel:


Known as inox steel,  this steel type is not only resistant to corrosion but also has an aesthetic look. When iron-based steel is exposed to oxygen, it goes through a reaction known as oxidation that changes its properties. This makes the metal reddish-brown or iron oxide. Unfortunately, this iron oxide has the ability to disintegrate the metal completely. Fortunately for stainless steel, this is not a problem. The resistance factor against corrosion is what makes stainless steel popular among steel dealers in India.


Carbon Steel:


When steel is a true carbon product, it will contain almost no other alloying metal other than carbon. This steel type has as low as 10.5% of chromium content in it and about 0.03%-2.0% of carbon in it.  Mostly, hard substances are made from this steel type due to the high carbon content.


Now let’s take a look at the differences between the two:

  1. Corrosion resistance

The biggest difference between stainless steel and carbon steel that the best steel companies in India use to separate them is their resistance to corrosion capability. While both stainless steel and carbon steel contain iron oxide that can lead to rusting, the percentage of chromium in the stainless steel makes it resist it.

The reason why pre-engineered building manufacturers in India use stainless steel is because of such durability. On the other hand, the chromium content in carbon steel is not enough to resist rusting.

  1. Appearance

The appearance of stainless steel as said by steel dealers in India is very beautiful. It is not only a hygienic material but also has a smooth glossy finish. Carbon steel on the other hand requires a polish before it can shine as bright as stainless steel.

Surprisingly, if the stainless steel gets scratched, it retains back its layer. But in carbon steel, the scratched part will require coloring or it might be subjected to corrosion again.

  1. Properties

The mechanical properties of both steel types are also a factor that differentiates them. Both steel types, according to the best steel companies in India have several steel grades. However, stainless steel can be less brittle and more ductile while carbon steel can be just the opposite. This is due to the amount of nickel present in carbon steel.

Again the tensile strength of stainless steel is less. This is because of the lowered carbon content in the steel type. Furthermore, carbon steel can be readily heat treated than stainless steel.

  1. Cost-efficiency

One of the important factors in choosing which is the right steel type is its price. Carbon steels are less costly as said by steel dealers in India. This is because of the carbon and iron elements present.

But, most pre-engineered building manufacturers in India go for stainless steel even though they are costlier. The reason for them being costly is the inclusion of chromium, nickel, manganese, and others in the steel type.

From what can be seen, both steel types have their pros and cons. Thus, it is important to choose the right steel type based on the work it is being used for. Do not rush while choosing, instead look at all the factors that are compatible with the given work.

However, if a person wishes to use it for a project that will be hidden from plain sight (used underground or inside concrete), it is better to go for a more environment-friendly steel type, i.e., stainless steel.