Homeowners who go to buy stainless steel for the first time may be baffled when they are asked which surface finish they would like. Such homeowners may not know that stainless steel is available in a number of surface finishes to suit different purposes. This article discusses some of the most common stainless steel surface finishes that you may choose from.
The Matte Finish
The most basic surface finish of stainless steel is the matte finish. Such stainless steel is dull in appearance. This is the finish that stainless steel has when it has just left the steel mill. This type of finish is the most affordable among all the surface finishes of stainless steel. Matte finish stainless steel is good for use in projects where the appearance of the material isn't important, such as when the stainless steel will be used to make sewage equipment. You can also buy stainless steel with the matte finish in case you would like additional processing to be done on that steel.
The Brushed Finished
The easiest way to identify stainless steel with a brushed surface finish is to look for its distinctive fine parallel lines. The abrasives that are used to sand the stainless steel in order to give it a muted decorative appearance create those lines. The stainless steel isn't too shiny. This type of stainless steel is more expensive when compared to stainless steel that has the matte finish. However, it is more visually appealing when compared to matte finish stainless steel. The drawback of this type of stainless steel is that its corrosion resistance is limited. This is because the crevices created by the parallel lines allow the material to trap substances that can eventually cause it to corrode. Stainless steel with this finish can be used for making home appliance parts and for architectural purposes.
The Mirror Finish
Stainless steel with a mirror finish is very reflective. Any after-effects of welding are removed before this stainless steel is heavily polished until it has a shiny surface. The stainless steel is then buffed until no surface imperfection remains. This type of stainless steel has the highest corrosion resistance because its surface is free from grooves that can trap corrosive substances. This stainless steel can be used for ornamental trim on homes. It can also be used in clean rooms or for making mirrors. Note that the mirror finish is the most expensive of all finishes.
Consider your application before you select the stainless steel surface finish that will address your needs. Consult stainless steel suppliers for more guidance in case you are undecided about the type you should buy.