What is surgical grade stainless steel?

Grade 316 stainless steel of often referred to as surgical grade because it is used in medical and surgical equipment. Grade 304 is good enough in most cases. Grade 316 is more corrosion resistant, durable and can be cleaned with a wider range of anti-bacterial chemicals than 304. Many of our stainless steel products can be made from grade 316 stainless steel.

Surgical grade stainless steel contains high levels of chromium and nickel, which provide higher corrosion and rust resistance. It is also non-magnetic which distinguishes it from the lower grade 430. Grades 316 and 304 is easier for engineers to fabricate medical scrub sinks and basins.

The specific composition of surgical grade stainless steel can vary, but it is typically composed of austenitic grades of stainless steel, such as 316L or 304L, which have low levels of carbon and high levels of nickel and chromium.

Surgical grade stainless steel has high bacterial resistance. It does not react with blood or human tissue, which is critical for medical use. It is easy to clean and stays sterile for longer than other materials. The high levels of carbon and nickel make it very expensive.

What can we make out of surgical grade stainless steel?

We can make almost all our products from grade 316 but is it worth it. 316 is much more expensive than 304 and there are very few applications that really necessitates the specific characteristics that surgical grade offers. The products below are requested most often in 316:

  • Lab sinks
  • Medical sinks
  • Catering sinks and pot sinks
  • Medical shelving