How to recycle metals properly? – Your guide to sorting stainless steel recyclables

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May 1, 2018

Stainless steel is non-magnetic, heavier than aluminum and does not rust easily. Here’s our guide on how to recycle and sort your common stainless steel items more effectively! 

Stainless steel 316/304 (SS316/304)
SS316 and SS304 are the two common grades of stainless steel. The key difference is the addition of molybdenum, an alloy which gives it added corrosion resistance. 316 stainless steel contains molybdenum and higher nickel content, thus causing the price of SS316 to be higher than SS304. There’s no visible difference between SS304 and SS316. 

SS316 is commonly used in marine and chemical equipment, and SS304 is commonly used in storage tanks, kitchen equipment, and appliances. 

Stainless steel 201 (SS201)
SS201 has a lower nickel (Ni) and higher manganese (Mn) content, making it harder and stronger, but not as resistant to corrosion. It was created due to the soaring nickel prices. Due to the lower nickel content, the price of SS201 is generally lower than SS304. 

Lately, SS201 is commonly used in bathroom fittings and faucets, kettles and tableware. 

While sorting the different grades of stainless steel, do ensure that the materials are free from attachments and recycling contamination. In conclusion, SS201 has a lower price, better durability, and hardness, while SS304 is general purpose steel, and SS316 has a higher price and better corrosion resistance. If you have further queries on stainless steel segregating, you can give us a call! 

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