What is the Difference Between 301 & 304 Stainless Steel?
Date:Jan 06, 2020
When we talk about stainless steels is important to know the differences between the two most commonly used types 304 and 201, each one has its own chemical composition as well as advantages and disadvantages, beside specific characteristics as hardness, corrosion resistance, welding, and appearance among others, each of these features is what makes each type ideal for some projects.
Type 201 is lower cost alternative to conventional Cr-Ni stainless steels such as 304. The 201 alloy has very low levels of nickel, replaced by manganese or nitrogen, which affect the corrosion resistance, because any of these elements is as resistant to oxidation such as nickel. Nether Stainless steel 304 or 201 are magnetic and also has very similar appearance, that’s why many manufacturers use the 201 to achieve lower costs without affecting the appearance. On other hand the 304 stainless steel is made of an alloy of carbon, chromium and minimum 8% of nickel, making it extremely resistant to oxidation, both indoors and outdoors, the welding is excellent without affecting the appearance or corrosion resistance in the joints. Under regular environmental conditions the 304 has lifetime durability while the grade 201 appearance can be affected in two or three years.
Do not be fooled by the way it looks, ask about the stainless steel type or grade used to manufactured the product you are buying. Don’t waste your money, get what you pay.