Stainless steel nuts and bolts are the right choice for fasteners that will be exposed to harsh conditions where corrosion is a concern. Contrary to popular belief stainless steel is not any stronger than other steel, but it does provide superior resistance to rust, staining and corrosion.
If you’re looking for steel fasteners, Electronic Fasteners in Canton, MA has one of the largest stainless steel fastener inventories available. We can help you choose the right fasteners to fight corrosion resulting from exposure to fresh or salt water, or exposure to chemicals, even for food industry applications.
Stainless steel nuts and bolts are a mainstay of the fastener industry. Made from a steel alloy that contains a minimum of 10.5 percent chromium, there are over 150 different grades of stainless steel and a variety of finishes available. When selecting stainless steel fasteners, it’s important to remember:
- The higher the type number the greater the corrosion resistance
- The greater the resistance to corrosion the lower the strength of the steel
- Stainless steel is a relatively poor electrical conductor, making it a good choice for applications requiring low conductivity
Stainless steel nuts and bolts come in many different grades. The two most commonly used grades are 304 and 316, with 316 being more corrosion resistant than 304. The rule-of-thumb is that if stainless steel hardware is in a corrosive environment 316 is preferable, particularly if the fastener is visible, as 316 is less likely to “tea-stain” or develop a brown discoloration that can be cosmetically unattractive.
We recommend that all stainless steel nuts and bolts have their threads lubricated before assembly to reduce the risk of the threads locking up – a condition known as galling. We have found the most risk of galling is with larger stainless steel fastener threads (M16 upwards), and also when using Nyloc nuts.
To learn more about stainless steel nuts and bolts contact the experts here at Electronic Fasteners. We’ve got an excellent inventory of stainless steel fasteners, including nuts and bolts, for commercial, military, medical, and food industry applications, to name just a few.