Grade 316 is the standard molybdenum-bearing grade, second in importance to 304 amongst the austenitic stainless steels. The molybdenum gives 316 better overall corrosion resistant properties than Grade 304, particularly higher resistance to pitting and crevice corrosion in chloride environments. It has excellent forming and welding characteristics. It is readily brake or roll formed into a variety of parts for applications in the industrial, architectural, and transportation fields. Grade 316 also has outstanding welding characteristics. Post-weld annealing is not required when welding thin sections.
Grade 316L, the low carbon version of 316 and is immune from sensitisation (grain boundary carbide precipitation). Thus it is extensively used in heavy gauge welded components (over about 6mm). Grade 316H, with its higher carbon content has application at elevated temperatures, as does stabilised grade 316Ti.