5 Common Applications for Stainless Steel Tubes

A variety of industries depend on stainless steel tube for different applications. Its versatility makes it the best choice for different applications. With the application of nickel, molybdenum, and chromium in various amounts, manufacturers come up with different grades to suit different purposes.

The use of stainless steel tube in the different industries is mainly supported by the fact that it is low maintenance and doesn’t affect the metals and other materials it comes in contact with. Let us take a look at the most common applications for these pipes.

High-Pressure Applications

In factories where liquids are pumped through at high pressure, stainless steel is the best material to use. The grade may vary depending on the pressure that will be passed through the pipes. Some of these may be welded together while others are seamless and there are some grades that can handle high temperatures combined with high pressure.

Aviation Application

Different parts of an aircraft will utilize stainless steel. The engine probably uses the most steel, especially where high temperatures will be experienced. The kind of steel used usually has a composition of chromium and nickel. Aircraft engineers prefer lighter steel which is also strong. 304 is a common grade used for tubing and wiring. The jet engine utilizes 321 grade because of its high resistance to temperatures that reach 1500°F. it is also used for the exhaust ducts. Other grades commonly used are 316 and 430.

Food Processing

In industries that deal with food as well as pharmaceuticals, stainless steel tubes are used because they do not contaminate the food. Nothing in the steel will sip into the food so it will remain safe and clean. Any process that needs to maintain the purity of the substance that washes through the pipes can use stainless steel. 304 grade is a common food grade steel that is used for this purpose. However, sometimes it has to be substituted for a more corrosion-resistant grade like 316 which can even withstand acidic chemicals and heat without getting corroded.


The mining process uses a lot of pipes. In most cases, these pipes need to be corrosion resistant as well as withstand high pressure. Stainless steel pipes meet those criteria and that is why they are used. For offshore mining, alloys that contain molybdenum can provide good piping without getting affected by the salty water. Sometimes the pipes through which the oil is transported need to be heated to keep the crude oil in liquid state, this requires pipes that can withstand repeated exposure to heat.

Decorative Application

In construction, stainless steel pipes provide decorative railing because of their shiny nature. Various grades have this property and at times it depends on what one is ready to pay to have a particular grade. At the same time though, they need to consider where the pipes will be placed. Some places may expose the pipes to a higher degree of corrosion.

There are many more applications for stainless steel pipes, but these 5 are the most common. Sometimes, a special grade of steel can be made for special projects. You would need to ask the manufacturer about having that done.