These are nickel-free stainless steels. They have a varying chromium content of 10.5 to 18%, but a lower carbon (C) content than the martensitics. One special heat-resistant grade contains 26% chromium. The common specifications are 430, 409, and weldable 12% chromium steels.
Basic properties of ferritic stainless steels:
- Moderate to good corrosion resistance which increases with the chromium content
- Magnetic, non-hardenable and always used in the annealed condition
- Weldability is poor which generally limits their applications as welded components to thin gauge material
- Formability is closer to that of ferritic carbon steels than that of austenitic stainless steels.
Common uses include builders' hardware, domestic applications (dishwashers, clothes dryers), and architectural and automotive trim. Thick gauge applications include liners, decking plates, spillways, chain conveyors, and dust and fume extractors.