If you’re looking to purchase metal trolleys, you may be pondering what kind of metal to use – or whether it makes much difference. The first point is: it does matter which material you use, because different metals have different properties. So, bearing in mind that carbon steel and stainless steel are the two most popular options for trolleys, which should you choose? The answer depends on the job your trolleys will perform.
While carbon and stainless steels are both alloys – a mix of steel and other components – it’s the final blend which creates a specific metal product with particular properties.
- Carbon steel has a high carbon content which makes it an excellent conductor of heat with a relatively low melting point, which is renowned for its durability.
- Stainless steel, on the other hand, is high in chromium, which gives it a characteristic lustre. This blend provides stainless steel with a protective surface (a chromium oxide layer) which is highly resistant to corrosion and remarkably stain-resistant.
All steel is relatively strong, but carbon steel has a reputation for extremely robust performance. And likewise, correctly installed and with adequate protection, each of the two materials can resist corrosion. It’s just that stainless steel excels in that respect.
Typical Stainless Steel Trolley Applications
Stainless steel gives a long-lasting, blemish-free surface. It ‘looks’ clean and is relatively easy to keep free from dirt. This makes stainless steel trolleys extremely hygienic – and thus explains why it is commonly used in kitchens, bathrooms, shower rooms etc. So if hygiene is important, stainless steel trolleys are the best choice. That’s why trolleys used in catering and food preparation facilities, hospital and care home environments, are mostly constructed from stainless steel. A similar situation occurs in food manufacturing, certain laboratories and hi-tech environments, as well as distribution warehouses. Wherever cleanliness is paramount and/or a statutory/health priority, stainless steel trolleys are the go-to option.
Typical Carbon Steel Trolley Applications
The strength of carbon steel makes it an ideal choice for the sturdy metal trolleys, wheeled platforms and mobile stairways required to meet the demands of many commercial and industrial sites. That’s why carbon steel trolleys are common in ports, airports, railway stations, workshops, factories, road transport hubs and warehouse facilities.
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