Stainless Steel and Salt Corrosion: Coastal Applications

Stainless steel suppliers in Perth now fabricate a lot of stainless steel products for coastal applications due to their ability to resist corrosion. This makes stainless steel a natural for many coastal applications. Today, we would like to explain how stainless steel resists corrosion and why it is so great for coastal applications.

Stainless Steel For Coastal Applications

How Stainless Steel Resists Salt Corrosion

Rust is a substance called iron oxide. It occurs when iron reacts to oxygen in the air or in water and oxidises. Stainless steel has at least 10.5% chromium and some grades up to 18%. The chromium produces a different reaction with the oxygen and produces a different oxide which becomes a surface layer.

The oxide produced by the chromium is resistant to further oxidation. It also turns into a thin passive layer on the surface. This layer is thin, but it reforms if it is scratched or machined and still provides protection to the stainless steel surface. If nickel is added as in grades 304 and 316, it extends the passivity of the surface layer.

When molybdenum is added as in grade 316, it improves the passivity even more and makes stainless steel more resistant to sulfuric, acetic and sulferous acids, in addition to salt such as that in seawater. If the correct grade of stainless steel is used, there will be no corrosion.


There are numerous possible applications for stainless steel in coastal environments. Grade 316 is one of those more commonly used for salt corrosion. The Discovery Centre in Portland, which is the oldest town in Victoria, was made entirely of stainless steel and glass. It serves as a museum and as an information centre. It is on the coast and is often buffeted by waves 2-3m high in storms. It has been open for eight years.

Also in Victoria, the Geelong Carousel Pavilion is another impressive stainless steel project. It has been open for six years and has withstood the weather in fine form.

Call 1300 794 647 to learn more.

About Paul

Paul Bartlett is the owner and director of Western Stainless Solutions. He has a passionate commitment to personally seeing each project through from conception to completion. Mr Bartlett has owned Western Stainless Solutions since 2005. He had prior experience as a foreman for Caterlink, where he learned to fit out numerous restaurants with stainless steel equipment.

With Western Stainless Solutions, Mr Bartlett has overseen numerous large projects, always getting them finished on time and on budget. His favourite projects include:

  • Fiona Stanley Hospital
  • Joondalup Health Campus
  • Coles Inglewood
  • Woolworths Yanchep
  • Mt Barker Chicken
  • The Merrywell Bar
  • Perth Children's Hospital
  • St John of God Subiaco refurb and development

Mr Bartlett has extensive experience in completing large projects, but is always around to add a personal touch to projects such as restaurants and pubs.

Mr Bartlett also has experience in the sports world. He currently serves as a volunteer coach for School Sports WA and spent two years as the General Manager of the Stirling Senators in the State Basketball League.

The bottom line: Mr Bartlett specialises in getting things done. He has a “hands-on” approach that is rare for owners of businesses the size of Western Stainless Solutions.