Common Finishing Options for Stainless Steel

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Common Finishing Options for Stainless Steel

Metal background or texture of brushed steel plate

There are a number of different choices you have to make when it comes to stainless steel projects, and one important area here is the steel’s finishing. An attractive finish can enhance the appeal of a product, making it an important factor in areas like architecture and automotive industries.

During the 1970s and 1980s, new finishing styles were popularized and a new surface finish description was introduced. With that, there are now three very common stainless steel finishing options – let’s look at each of the three, and how the pros at Wasatch Steel can help you choose the best one for your next project.

Matte Finish

No. 2B is the mill finish, meaning it’s had no additional processing. These matt finishes are meant to be dull, and are not great for uses where the visual appeal is a top priority. In cases where further finishing is intended or where appearance isn’t important, though, the matte finish is perfect.

It’s created by cold rolling stainless steel through special rolls or dies, then softened and de-scaling it in an acid solution. A few common applications of matte finish include chemical equipment, laundry and dry cleaning areas, refrigeration, and sewage equipment.

Brushed Finish

The No. 4 brushed finish can vary based on manufacturing conditions, and you should get a sample in advance here. But if you can find the right option, the brushed finish gives a distinctive look like a fine pattern of parallel lines. It’s not too reflective, which isn’t attractive, making it perfect for jewelry, various home appliances, air conditioners, architecture, and certain areas of auto design.

Mirror Finish

The No. 8 mirror finish is highly reflective, an effect created by polishing the steel. This enhances appearance and consistency, and also makes the steel much easier to clean while masking any welding after-effects or surface damage. No. 8 mirror finishing improves corrosion resistance, and is commonly used in mirrors, clean rooms, column covers, wall panels and more.

For more on the finishing style of your stainless steel, or to buy steel online today, speak to the pros at Wasatch Steel.