The Ultimate Guide for 310 Stainless Steel

The Ultimate Guide for 310 Stainless Steel

 

With so many stainless steels available in today’s market, 310 grade is one of the most popular.

Due to its superior properties, this makes it widely used for various applications, such as in the petrochemical industry.

By reading this article, you will be provided with an overview of 310 stainless steel properties, its uses, and its welding requirements.

You will also discover here its difference from other stainless steel grades.

Let’s get into this.

The Definition of 310 Stainless Steel

310 stainless steel is a type of austenitic stainless steel, which is a metal alloy. It is a popular material that you can get in different forms. Whether in plates, sheets, fasteners, or tube forms to meet your fabrication projects.

It is composed of iron, chromium, and nickel. The iron content is between 19.5-22%, 25-28% chromium, and 20-22% nickel. This combination allows it to maintain its strength and corrosion resistance, even when exposed to high temperatures.

Chemical Composition

The chemical composition refers to the ratio of elements in stainless steel. It is an important factor in determining the properties, characteristics, and quality of the material.

Grade 310 composition usually consists of:

Iron (Fe) 74.0-76.0%
Chromium (Cr) 19.0-22.0%
Nickel (Ni) 19.0-22.0%
Manganese (Mn) 2.00% max
Silicon (Si) 1.50% max
Carbon (C) 0.25% max
Phosphorus (P) 0.045% max
Sulfur (S) 0.030% max
Selenium (Se) 0.70-1.20%
Nitrogen (N) 0.10% max

Advantages of Using Grade 310

You are probably wondering why 310 become one of the widely used stainless steel grades.

Well, here are the lists of the reasons why.

High Strength. 310 stainless steel has excellent strength and toughness. This makes it ideal for applications that demand high strength.

Heat Resistance. The material has highly resistant to high temperatures. Able to withstand temperatures up to 1150°C (2100°F). This makes it popular for applications that demand heat resistance.

High Ductility. Grade 310 has excellent ductility, making it easy to form and shape into different components.

Low Cost. Compared to other types of stainless steel, grade 310 is relatively inexpensive. This makes it the best choice for cost-conscious projects.

Long-Lifespan. Most especially, grade 310 is very durable. Therefore it can last for many years with minimal maintenance. If your application needs a low-maintenance yet long-lasting material, then 310 steel is your ideal.

What to Do and Don’ts

If you are about to use grade 310 stainless steel, here are the reminders you should be taken into account.

Do’s Don’ts
  • Use 310 SS in applications that require superior corrosive resistance and strength.
  • Ensure that you match the correct grade of stainless steel to the application.
  • Take extra care when welding the material as it is prone to hot cracking.
  • Pre-heat the stainless steel to avoid cracking or warping during welding.
  • Use lower amperage and slower speeds when welding to ensure a strong weld.
  • Don’t use aggressive cleaning agents on the 310 SS as it can cause corrosion.
  • Don’t leave stainless steel exposed to harsh environments for a long time as it can corrode.
  • Don’t exceed the recommended pre-heat temperature when welding. Because it can cause warping and cracking.
  • Don’t use high amperage and high speed when welding. As this can weaken the weld.
  • Don’t use abrasive tools when cutting or machining as this can cause surface damage.

Where to Use 310 Stainless Steel?

Where to Use 310 Stainless Steel

Besides knowing its composition, it is also important that you consider its primary uses.

This will help you determine if this specific stainless steel grade is good for your application.

Let’s discuss its uses in detail.

Aerospace

Grade 310 is used in aerospace applications because it has better creep resistance than other steels.

Therefore, you can use them to fabricate:

  • Heat exchangers
  • Engine components
  • Turbine blades
  • Landing gear parts
  • Exhaust manifolds

Automotive

The 310 material is used in the automotive field, particularly for manufacturing exhaust systems. One of the reasons why is because of its high oxidation resistance. Therefore, it is an ideal material for automotive components that are exposed to extreme heat and exhaust gases.

Additionally, due to excellent fatigue properties, 310 stainless steel became a perfect material for automotive parts. Especially on those parts that are subject to high vibration and stress.

Finally, it has a high melting point, making it resistant to most heat sources, including exhaust systems.

Chemical Processing

310 is an ideal stainless steel grade for the chemical processing industry. Why? This is because of its extreme resistance to oxidation in various chemical media.

Therefore, 310 stainless steel is the most suitable material for producing components, such as:

  • Pressure vessels
  • Heat exchangers
  • Storage tanks
  • Valves and fittings
  • Piping parts

Food & Beverage

The food and beverage industry requires components that have high-temperature properties. That is why 310 become one of the most used steels in this field.

The specific material used to make:

  • Storage tanks
  • Food processing equipment
  • Dairy processing machines
  • Kitchen equipment

Petrochemical

In the petrochemical processing field, 310 stainless steel is used as the:

  • High-temperature Heat Exchangers
  • Pressure vessels
  • Pumps
  • Valves
  • Flanges

Pharmaceutical

Since grade 310 has non-magnetic characteristics, it became a leading material widely used in manufacturing:

  • Heat exchangers
  • Pipes and fittings
  • Storage tanks
  • Pharmaceutical manufacturing equipment

Ways to Manufacture 310-Grade Stainless Steel

Ways to Manufacture 310 Grade Stainless Steel

The manufacturing process typically includes the following steps:

  • Melting: The raw materials such as nickel, chromium, and iron are melted together in an electric furnace to create the molten alloy.
  • Casting: The molten alloy is then cast into ingots or billets, which are then forged or rolled into the desired shapes.
  • Annealing: The material is then annealed at high temperatures to soften and homogenize the metal.
  • Rolling and Forging: After that, the material is then rolled and forged into the desired dimensions and shapes.
  • Polishing: The material is then polished to create the desired surface finish.
  • Heat Treatment: Finally, the finished 310 stainless steel is then heat treated to increase its corrosion resistance and strength.

Step-by-Step Maintenance Procedures

Doing regular maintenance is very essential to preserve the quality of the material in the long run.

Now, let’s learn how to maintain the 310 stainless steel in 6 effective ways.

  1. Cleaning: Remove any dirt, dust, or debris from the surface of the stainless steel. You can use a damp cloth or a soft brush.
  2. Polishing: Use a stainless steel polish to remove any oxidation or discoloration that may have occurred over time.
  3. Waxing: Apply a stainless steel wax to the surface. It will protect its surface from further oxidation or discoloration.
  4. Inspections: Regularly inspect the stainless steel for any signs of corrosion or discoloration.
  5. Repairing: If any damage is present, repair it immediately to prevent further damage or rusting.
  6. Sealing: Seal any seams or joints in the 310 SS to prevent water or moisture from getting inside. It will cause corrosion over time.

How to Weld 310-Grade Stainless Steel

How to Weld 310-Grade Stainless Steel

Welding 310 steel is a difficult task as it has high levels of chromium and nickel content.

In order to successfully weld the material, the following steps should be taken:

  • Preheat the material: Preheating first the stainless steel before welding helps reduce the hardness of the oxide layer formed on the surface. It will make it easier to weld. Preheating should be done at a temperature of 750-900 degrees Fahrenheit for 15 minutes before welding.
  • Use the correct welding rod: A 309L or 312 welding rod should be used for welding 310-grade stainless steel. This type of welding rod is designed to be used on stainless steel and will help prevent the formation of hard oxides. As it compromises the integrity of the weld.
  • Set the welder: The welder should be set to a voltage that is slightly higher than the voltage used for welding mild steel. The welding amperage should be set to a lower range. This ensures minimizing heat input and reduces the risk of warping the metal.
  • Prepare the metal: The metal should be cleaned with a wire brush to remove any dirt, oil, or rust. The welding area should be free of any contaminants or oxides.
  • Start the weld: Begin the weld by striking an arc at a 45-degree angle. Move the welding rod in a circular motion while maintaining the 45-degree angle. The welding rod should be moved in a circular pattern to ensure that the weld is even.
  • Finish the weld: Once the weld is complete, allow it to cool before inspecting it. After that, clean the area with a wire brush to remove any oxides.

Now your welded 310 stainless steel is ready!

310 VS 304 Stainless Steel

In terms of stainless steel, 310 and 304 are the two most common alloys used in production. Both are austenitic stainless steels, meaning they are non-magnetic and have similar properties. However, there are several key differences between them.

The major dissimilarity between grade 310 and grade 304 is the composition. 310 stainless steel contains a higher chromium and nickel content compared to 304. This gives it superior corrosion resistance, which makes it ideal for use in highly corrosive environments. Additionally, grade 310 is less susceptible to oxidation due to its higher chromium content.

Another key difference between the two alloys is their heat resistance. The grade 310 is capable of withstanding higher temperatures than 304 stainless steel. Therefore, it is ideal for applications that require frequent exposure to high heat. However, it is important to note that this increased heat resistance also makes 310 stainless steel more brittle than 304.

Finally, grade 310 is more expensive, making it more suitable for specialized applications.

In conclusion, both 310 and 304 offer excellent corrosion resistance and heat resistance. However, the higher chromium and nickel content of 310 makes it more resistant to oxidation in high-temperature environments. In addition, the higher carbon content of grade 310 enables it to be stronger and harder. On the other hand, 304 stainless steel is better suited for applications that require superior formability and weldability.

The Difference Between 310 from 316 SS

310 vs. 316 STAINLESS STEEL

If you are about to choose between two different types of stainless steel, it can be difficult to decide which one is the best.

The most common types of stainless steel are 310 and 316. Both of these grades offer excellent corrosion resistance and a wide range of uses. But at the same time, they do have some significant differences.

The 310 stainless steel is an alloy that contains a high percentage of chromium and nickel. It has a higher resistance to oxidation than other grades. It is also heat resistant and has great weldability. Grade 310 is often used in applications where food-grade materials are required.

On the other hand, 316 stainless steel is an alloy that contains higher amounts of molybdenum, chromium, and nickel than other grades. It has better resistance to pitting and crevice corrosion. Also, it has greater tensile strength. Grade 316 is often used in medical, industrial, and marine environments.

Is 310 Stainless Steel Magnetic?

The answer is yes, grade 310 is magnetic.

This type of stainless steel is ferromagnetic. Meaning it has a tendency to become magnetized when placed in a magnetic field. Its high chromium and nickel content also gives it a higher magnetic susceptibility than any other grade.

Because of its high magnetic susceptibility, 310 can be used in applications where a magnet can be used to detect or measure small changes in a magnetic field. It is also used in applications that require high-temperature resistance. Such as in jet engines, turbines, and heat exchangers.

Although 310 stainless steel is magnetic, it is not as magnetic as other grades of stainless steel. Grade 310 typically has a permeability of around 1.02, which is much lower compared to other stainless steel grades. This lower permeability means that it will not be able to attract ferromagnetic particles as strongly as other grades.

Overall, 310 stainless steel is magnetic, but it has a much lower magnetic permeability than other stainless steel grades. This means that it is not particularly strong in terms of its magnetic properties. Therefore it will not attract a magnet. But instead, it will be attracted to a strong magnetic field.

Is Grade 310 Food Grade?

Yes.

The said material can withstand temperatures up to 1150°C (2100°F). That makes it suitable in applications such as ovens, fryers, and cooking utensils. Additionally, its non-magnetic properties make it safe for use in food processing and preparation.

In conclusion, Grade 310 is a suitable food-grade material due to its high resistance to corrosion, excellent strength, and non-magnetic properties. It is also highly heat-resistant. Which makes it ideal for use in various industrial and food applications.

Melting Point

The melting point of grade 310 is a range of 2550-2650°F (1400-1450°C).

This temperature range is dependent on the alloy composition and is typically used for casting.

Grade 310 stainless steel has a maximum use temperature of approximately 1150°C (2100°F) in continuous service. It is not recommended for use at temperatures exceeding this. This is due to its susceptibility to creep deformation and embrittlement.

Price List

The standard cost of 310 stainless steels will be based according to your supplier, your desired thickness, and other aspects.

Take a look below to get an estimated price reference.

By Thickness Estimated Price
0.25″ $2.20/square foot
0.375″ $3.30/square foot
0.5″ $4.50/square foot
0.75″ $6.75/square foot
1″ $9.00/square foot
1.25″ $11.25/square foot
1.5″ $13.50/square foot
2″ $18.00/square foot
3″ $27.00/square foot
4″ $36.00/square foot
5″ $45.00/square foot
6″ $54.00/square foot

Conclusion

From what you’ve read, 310 stainless steel really proves a fundamental role in a wide range of applications.

Whether you’re part of the automotive, pharmaceutical, or food processing industry, you are now determined that grade 310 is a much better material when manufacturing components.

Analyzing the information above will certainly be of assistance.  It helps you decide what the best time to use the material for your applications.

Here at Tuolian, we are always ready to answer all your concerns regarding 310 stainless steel. Please don’t hesitate to contact us!

One Stop Stainless Steel Supply.

Whether you need stainless steel materials for your business or fabrication projects, TuoLian is your best supplier. You can find all types, grades, and thicknesses based on your needs. Guaranteed that we provide the best quality at a reasonable cost.
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