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How to Identify Types of Stainless Steel

How to Identify Types of Stainless Steel

Metals are essential in every aspect of our daily lives. They make our lives much easier and provide us with the strength and stable components many industries need. Of course, there are many types of them, each used for specific purposes. Aside from the normal classification, however, many metals also have subtypes. For example, stainless steel has wide varieties. Knowing the different features of a specific metal always puts you in an advantaged position if you are a scrap metal recycler. Therefore, in this article, we will review certain types of stainless steel and tell you how you can identify these types.

  1. Stainless steel is a very sought metal due to its several advantages:
  2. The most well-known characteristic of stainless steel is its corrosion-resistant nature. Since it is so rust-resistant, it's very advantageous for many industries.
  3. It's very easy-to-clean, quite hygienic, unlike many other metals.
  4. It's a very durable material.
  5. Stainless steel is mainly created from scrap metals and is recyclable. So, it is a very sustainable material.

There are several ways to understand the type of stainless steel. It's mainly based on the physical and chemical properties of the steel. Here are some of the identification methods.


The first thing to look for is color. Many stainless plates of steel will change color after the process called pickling. Pickling is a process used to clean impurities, rust, and scale from steel, changing the steel's color. For example, stainless steel with a brown-white may become silver-white; or dark brown can turn gray-white. Depending on observing the before and after the color of the steel, professionals can have an idea of the type of steel.

Magnetic Features

Stainless steel is an alloy. So, it's a mix of various metals, and based on the concentration of the metals, you can know whether it has a strong composition of iron or not based on its magnetic quality. So, by getting a magnet and seeing if the metal sticks to it, you can get an idea about the composition of the stainless steel.

Spark Test

Professionals mostly use this method because it requires advanced tools. Professionals grind a steel sample in a spark test and observe the emerging sparks. Depending on the color and quality of the sparks, they can understand the carbon content of that sample.

Right Company For Your Scrap Metal Recycling Experience

Of course, there are many different methods to understand the type of steel, and as a scrap metal recycler, you can only perform some of them since other methods require advanced knowledge and equipment. Depending on the alloy, the price of the stainless steel changes. At M&M Recycling, we know the importance of sustainability due to the continuous depletion of the earth's resources. Helping the environment through scrap metal recycling while giving our customers a source of income is precious to us. We are a scrap metal company that accepts various ferrous and non-ferrous metals. Get in touch with our representatives to learn more today!