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Stainless Steel 101 - A Quick Tutorial

Door and frame dealers are familiar with stainless steel as a material that is occasionally ordered for high quality or high aesthetic value projects.  However, some dealer employees may not be familiar with the basics of stainless steel. 

With this newsletter DCI begins a series about stainless steel to help educate the dealer community about this remarkable material.

Stainless steel is essentially a low carbon steel, containing chromium at 10% or more by weight. Stainless steel differs from carbon steel by the amount of chromium present. Unprotected carbon steel rusts quickly when exposed to air and moisture. Stainless steels contain sufficient chromium to form a passive film of chromium oxide. This prevents further surface corrosion and blocks corrosion from spreading to the metal's internal structure.

Stainless steel became available to designers in the mid-1920s. Today, stainless steel is one of the most durable materials used in construction. With the appropriate selection of grade and finish, design, fabrication, and maintenance, the appearance and properties of stainless steel can remain unchanged for decades.

The environmental impact of construction materials is a growing concern worldwide. Stainless steel scrap has a high value and is 100 percent recyclable. There is no limit to how much recycled scrap can be used to produce new stainless steel. For this reason stainless steel is used for many LEED-rated buildings.

Stainless steel is also a sustainable choice for interior building surface applications because it produces no VOC emissions. This makes it ideal for buildings such as museums, laboratories, and medical facilities, where control of the interior air quality is critical.

To view DCI’ stainless steel doors page, click here.

To View DCI stainless steel frames page, click here.

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