Precautions to be taken in a SS Railing Materials Selection

 How to choose the perfect SS grade for Site Conditions

  •  All that looks mirror finish & matt finish is not the perfect grade of SS for the right railing systems for your site. Following information below Is must if you need your railing system to look good after few years of installation.
  •  SS widely used in railings because it has properties to fight against corrosions, as its construction is Fe(Iron) + C (carbon) +Ch( Chromium).
  • It is the chromium when it comes in contact with oxygen it forms a passive layer which has the ability to repair itself.
  • Corrosion begins only when this passive layer is missing or damaged. Hence to have better resistance properties Chromium is added with Molybdenum, nickel & nitrogen to have least corrosion.
  • SS 316, SS 304, SS 202 & other grades have major differences in terms of factors to fight corrosions. Below table will show you which is better


1 SS 316 16% to 18 % Chromium, 10% Nickel, 2% Molybdenum. Molybdenum helps resistance towards chlorides.

i.e. ( Sea Water & other Salts)

2 SS 304 16% to 18% Chromium, 8 to 10% Nickel.
3 SS 202 16% to 18% Chromium, 0.5% to 4% Nickel


  • From the above table one can clearly make out SS 316 is the best no doubt expensive but it solves the purpose as it have non corrosive properties with presence of Molybdenum.
  • Rest all forms of SS will corrode over period of time.
  • Also note not only chemical construction of any metal is responsible for corrosion, but also mechanical properties such as stressed in a materials drive to corrode faster.
  • Thermal stresses & ageing of materials also are reasons to corrode.


From the above comparison it is clear & evident Low grade SS is not helpful in the long run & one daily the railing will corrode.

SS Pipes 316 Finished


SS Corroded Pipe ( either 304, 202)


Try to maximize use of better SS & bind your supplier to chemical tests & mechanical tests in any laboratory before risking the applications. Evident that to save some cost we are functionally compromising on quality of end product.



Similarly Glass constitutes important part of Railing systems. Very few glass processors & raw materials suppliers provide the right materials.

  • Ideally Laminated Glass is the right Application for any railing applications considering the safety of the occupants.
  • If you are using a tempered glass in railings the risk of breaking is 8 / 1000 due to Nis breakage & stress at the holes. So please don’t use stand alone tempered glass, use a safety film from Garware, 3m & other suppliers.
  • Laminated Glass is the right product but due to cost constraints people use tempered glass. As railings are widely used in balconies safety of the occupant is most important aspect.
  • Two sheet of Annealed, Heat strengthened , Toughened glass joined with PVB, Sentry, Saflex DG interlayer are processed in autoclave to become single integrated glass.

Precautions on has to take while selecting a right Laminated Glass

  •  In the whole process of Lamination the interlayer & Process constitutes equal responsibility for end quality.
  • Open edge application is aesthetically good as per Architects but in terms of performance in long run interlayer must not ingress water.
  • PVB is widely , but is very poor as it absorbs water & moisture from the edges, eventually failure is very high after some time.Images of Poor PVB Application with open Edge & Water, Moisture Ingression


How to Prevent Failures

  • Kindly involve interlayer manufacturer or hire a consultant so that you get the right product for right application.
  • Get the structural Analysis of the Glass done from Consultant / Interlayer Suppliers, as it is they who know their materials properties.
  • Structural Analysis of system is must.
  • With more failures & water entering open edge applications one has to know how to seal the edges & have right sealants approved in writing from Interlayer suppliers.

Recently new interlayer materials have come like Sentry Layer, Saflex DG & other but before going away with them please consult rightly if they are the right 



SS Materials & Glass constitues 75% of railing cost in terms of materials, hence ensure before going with any vendor these 2 components are perfect, else failure is imminent.

Also alternate Aluminium systems in railings are emerging to prevent problem of corrosion.


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