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Chrome vs. Stainless Steel Fixtures


What is the difference between a chrome plated fixture and a stainless steel fixture? Which is better and how can you tell the difference?

Roger Peters
Home owner - Concord, California, USA


What kind of fixture are you speaking of, Roger? There are chemical exposures that chrome is more resistant to, but chrome is a very thin plating whereas stainless steel is a solid material. And there are many types and grades of stainless steel. Chrome is shinier, and more specular in reflectivity; you can clearly see the clouds in the sky reflected in the best chrome plating.

It is possible to chrome plate truck bumpers so well that they withstand the worst possible exposures for a decade and more, but as a general rule I think stainless steel will be more durable.

pic of Ted Mooney Teds signature
Ted Mooney, P.E. RET
Pine Beach, New Jersey

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