Can Carbon Steel Be Replaced With Stainless Steel?

Carbon Steel is one of the widely used alloy in the market and before comprehending the difference, utilization and superiority of carbon steel over stainless steel, it’s imperative to have a thorough idea about what actually carbon steel is? Many of us are in the false notion, that steel is an element or metal. In actual sense, this idea is not correct. Carbon Steel falls in the category of an alloy. An alloy is something which possesses the chemical property of two or more elements. Carbon Steel is formed after processing the mixture of iron and carbon as the base element. The only differentiation lies in the composition level of this two prime elements.

The usage of carbon steel and stainless steel is prevalent in both consumer and commercial domain to a wider extent. Both this varieties of steel can be easily distinguished on the basis of their outer appearance.

Stainless steel is far more shiny and lustrous than carbon steel. Chromium is the fundamental element responsible in imparting the shiny look. When we talk in terms of metallurgy, stainless steel holds a layer of chromium oxide, while the carbon steel don’t have any.

There are many mechanical criteria which are considered to gauge the true quality mark of the steel. Whether it is stainless steel or carbon steel, both are composed of carbon and iron. Steel manufactured with excessive amount of carbon are solid and brittle compared to the one with the lower rate of carbon. Apart from the solidity feature, carbon steels are not corrosion resistant  compared to their counterpart – stainless steel.

Now comes the crux of the matter, Whether to use carbon steel or stainless steel? This entire matter totally depends on the purpose of utilization and financial budget. Each of them are distinct in terms of their mechanical and industrial aspects.

when you are looking for an ideal metal with solidification and heavy weight endurance level, experts recommend to opt for carbon steel. It is a sole reason why you find carbon steel in engineering artifacts like long flyovers, monumental statues, sky scrappers, tanks, forgings. However, carbon steel sheet metal is comparatively expensive.

Furthermore, carbon steel offers superior shock resistance property, ,making it favorite for the road infrastructure. Also, it is a perfect metal to use where weather conditions change frequently. If we talk about stainless steel applications, it is highly used in medical, kitchenware and other domestic applications.

In an automobile industry, stainless steel is widely used in production of outer body panels of the Automobiles due to low thermal conductivity. Carbon steel is not used as it deforms on low impact of force.


Before you initiate the activities pertaining to your project, it becomes crucial to select the appropriate metal. This approach will not only issue economic advantages but will also help in the development of robust and anti-fragile objects. You can hire metal fabricators like for your custom metal fabrication needs for metals like carbon steel, stainless steel or aluminum.