Here's When Stainless Steel Valves Are Ideal
Stainless steel is a much coveted material in industry because of its resistance to corrosion. However, the availability of other materials such as titanium and brass can make choosing parts like valves a bit more confusing because you might not know when one material wins out over another. All of these materials are durable, but there are three specific times when stainless steel is perfect for the job.
Stainless steel can conduct heat, but it is also fantastic at withstanding the effects of heat on the metal itself. It is best for applications where very hot fluid (fluid includes both gases and liquids) needs to run along the length of the pipe, and for applications in which the pipe itself will be exposed to very hot temperatures. The steel shouldn't warp or corrode as long as nothing hits it and damages it.
Stainless steel has an anti-rust reputation for a good reason. The way the steel is made helps prevent rust from forming because of the composition and coating on the outside of the steel. However, if the surface is damaged, that can render the coating useless at that point, and you can see rust start to form there. If the valves are going to be in an environment whey are constantly being hit or subjected to rough operation, then the use of stainless steel is iffy because of the risk of damage. If you really want to use stainless steel, you can, but you'll need to inspect it frequently to spot signs of rust.
Anything to Do With Food
If the valves will touch anything food or food-related, stainless steel is pretty much your only option. The Food and Drug Administration has approved some types of stainless steel equipment (in addition to utensils, etc.) for use with food. Because not all stainless steel is approved, you need to search specifically for FDA-approved valves, pipes, and so on, but if you need a valve for a water fountain, for example, FDA-approved stainless steel is exactly what you should be looking for. Non-approved materials may end up sending tiny bits of material, such as from coatings or unfinished ends, into food that passes through them.
Valves made of other materials may work well in a pinch (except for food-related uses). However, stainless steel valves are going to give you that durability, heat resistance, and corrosion resistance that you really need.