Stainless Steel Ducting – Everything You Need to Know

Stainless steel ductwork solutions are commonly used by professionals in a range of different industries for different applications. Despite their higher initial cost of purchase, they’re proven to be one of the most reliable options on the market.

In this article, we’ll look into what stainless steel ducting is used for and explain everything you need to know about this type of product.

What is stainless steel ducting used for?

Stainless steel ducting supplies are ideal for ventilation systems set up in hot or humid environments. Stainless steel ventilation ducting is also a popular choice for spaces and environments with air rich in certain compounds that could be hazardous or damaging to standard choices like galvanized steel ducting. HVAC experts and engineers typically choose to rely on stainless steel for aggressive environments, where corrosion is highly likely. This is because of the resistant and stable nature of stainless steel.

The benefits of stainless steel ductwork

Stainless steel ducting is a popular choice for a range of different industries and applications. Common products include stainless steel ducting for cooker hoods, stainless steel spiral ducting and stainless steel rectangular ducting. So why do people use stainless steel ducting? Let’s look at some of the benefits.

A price that is worth it in the long term

You may notice that stainless steel ductwork is usually sold at slightly higher prices when compared to its galvanized or aluminium counterparts. However, in the long term, stainless steel is the better option for both commercial and industrial applications. This type of ductwork can also be safely used in both indoor and outdoor spaces, eliminating the need for replacements and expensive maintenance for years to come. Stainless steel ductwork manufacturers enjoy cost advantages for production when compared to manufacturers of aluminium ductwork. Due to the malleability of aluminium, it’s difficult to create and install in the form of ductwork and it demands certain welding methods that often increase the price. Considering all of the benefits outlined so far, it’s safe to say that stainless steel extractor ducting can dramatically lower your upfront costs.

A healthy & eco-friendly solution

From an environmental perspective, stainless steel ductwork is ideal as it is resistant to moisture and condensation. This eliminates the risk of mildew or mould growth in the given space and makes the solution ideal for industries that involve oil or other wet mists being drawn from the air. Stainless steel ducting is an eco-friendly choice as it’s 100% recyclable and can dramatically reduce energy consumption. Once recycled, stainless steel can be put to use for the creation of solar, geothermal, nuclear, and wave power. It can also contribute to the creation of alternative energy equipment.

High levels of resistance

The impressive durability and strength of is perhaps the greatest advantage of stainless steel ducting. It is capable of preventing corrosion from aggressive substances like salts used in food processing. Stainless steel ductwork is also resistant to abrasion. It’s rigid and a perfect solution for the safe transport of high volumes of air. Flexible stainless steel ducting can easily be used in laboratories and research facilities, for instance, where the environment is strongly hazardous and caustic.

Stainless steel ductwork specifications

The majority of stainless steel ductwork is created using iron. Stainless steel also contains at least 18% of chromium. In addition, austenitic steel can have a nickel content of between 6% to 12.5%. Nickel is an interesting austenite-forming element that has the ability to support plasticity forming and welding. Nickel can significantly slow down and reduce corrosion in highly acidic environments. Considering this, the amazing corrosion-resisting elements of stainless steel ducting are possible thanks to the nickel and extra layer of chromium oxide. This special layer appears by itself on the surface and acts as a shield against corrosive agents.

As impressive as stainless steel may be in terms of anti-corrosion, there is no 100% guarantee that the ductwork won’t corrode. Some of the most popular reasons for corrosion include:

  • Poor maintenance – can result in concentrated acids on the pipe walls’ surface
  • Poor selection of the stainless steel type – there are different types of steel and it’s best to select one that is designed to survive in highly aggressive spaces
  • No or poor ventilation – the duct should have access to free airflow in order to prevent corrosion
  • Contamination — this can take place during the installation if the wrong tools are used 
  • Contact with carbon steel – potential damages during the transportation phases or storage

You can find stainless steel ducting solutions in either grade EN 1.4301/AISI 304 and grade EN 1.4404/AISI 316L. For example, if you’re looking for a solution that will be used in highly demanding industrial ventilation systems, it’s best to go for the 1.4404 or 316L sheet metal.

Ducting Express are stainless steel ducting suppliers. We offer a range of stainless steel ducting & can even make bespoke parts from stainless steel. Get in touch with us and let our trained and qualified experts answer all of your questions and help you make the right choice.