At Wasatch Steel, one of the more common questions we get when providing our clients with high-quality stainless steel services is this: Will my steel be magnetic? Some people believe all stainless steel is non-magnetic, while others think that because it has iron in it, it must be magnetic. What’s the real answer?
Well, it depends. Some kinds of stainless steel are indeed magnetic, while others are not. Why does this matter and what are the factors that determine whether your stainless steel is magnetic? Here’s a quick look.
Magnetism can have a massive effect on how a given steel performs within a given application. Think about it: If part of your processes with steel involves sorting it from other materials, one material being magnetic can be enormously helpful. On the flip side, though, welding or other fabrication processes can be a lot more difficult or even impossible with magnetic metals, and electrical currents may behave differently as well.
There are two essential requirements that dictate when a stainless steel is magnetic:
Naturally, all stainless steels contain iron as part of their composition. However, not all stainless steels have this crystal structure – there are many that are primarily composed of an austenite structure, and these stainless steels will not be magnetic.
There are a few common types of stainless steel that are generally magnetic in nature:
For more on whether or not your stainless steel will be magnetic, or to learn about any of our steel services, speak to the staff at Wasatch Steel today.