Properties of stainless steel and aluminum in comparison


Stainless steel and aluminum are two metals used in "either-or" mode or "both-as" design projects. While weight tends to be the focus of choice when it comes to moving parts, a combination often makes sense for rigid construction projects. However, direct contact is not always without risk.

Corrosion and rust protection

Many metal designs have some key questions about the properties of the material. Especially in outdoor use, the corrosion behavior is very important. While stainless steel is not always and always stainless, aluminum protects itself from oxidation by oxidation.

In principle, there is no rust on aluminum. At high proportions of corrosion-capable alloying partners, however, clouding on the surfaces is possible. Anyone wondering whether they want to use aluminum or stainless steel, must choose a stainless version of the different types of stainless steel.

Both aluminum and stainless steel can be protected by an outer oxide layer. While one of the advantages of aluminum is that it can be processed both electromagnetically and chemically, the anodising of stainless steel is limited to the chemical variant of immersing in a chemical bath during burnishing.

Connect metals with each other and with each other

Another key issue in the question of the more advantageous metal is the ability to make stable connections in the design. Both metals can be welded, whereby stainless steel can be well connected and aluminum must bring certain alloying requirements.

If you want to weld aluminum, you must choose a hardened alloy form. Alternatively, aluminum can also be soldered. Stainless steel is basically better and easier to weld. When joining aluminum and steel, in addition to proper welding, attention must be paid to an "encapsulation" of the two materials in order to prevent any so-called contact corrosion from occurring.

Weight and stability

The specific gravity of aluminum is about one-third the weight of stainless steel. Despite the relatively low density of aluminum, the metal has similar stability to stainless steel.

Tips & Tricks

When choosing the metal for heat transfer tasks, pay attention to the specific properties of aluminum, which can have some disadvantages, for example in radiator form.


Video Board: 10 Differences Between Aluminum and Stainless Steel