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High Carbon Steel Uses

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Last updated date: 21st Jul 2024
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Overview to High Carbon Steel

Kids, have you ever wondered about the utensils, in which your mother cooks delicious food, what they comprise? The material used to make utensils is high-carbon steel. We can't imagine the modern world without steel. Skyscrapers, railroad lines, bridges, automotive frames, and other household tools that must bear a huge amount of strain, wear, and tear are all constructed using steel, the most common material globally.

So, let's learn about what is high carbon steel. The term "carbon steel" refers to a type of steel that contains the element carbon, which you may be familiar with from other fields of study, as a very prevalent and versatile atom. Steel with a carbon content of more than 0.55 is known as high-carbon steel. Further, we will discuss high-carbon steel uses, high-carbon steel applications and much more. 

What is High Carbon Steel? 

High-carbon steel is any steel with a carbon concentration of 0.55 per cent or above or roughly one part in 180. High-carbon steel has the highest ratio of carbon. Although this is how cast-iron products such as wood stoves and cookware are created, increasing this concentration above 2% renders the end product highly brittle and of limited utility. As the content of carbon increases in steel, it becomes less ductile, but its strength and hardness increase.

High carbon steel has many unique features, such as exceptionally high strength, extreme hardness and wears resistance, and moderate ductility, which is a measure of a material's capacity to withstand deformation without actually breaking.

Difference Between High Carbon Steel and Mild Steel

When the primary alloying element used in steel is carbon and no other elemental requirement, i.e., chrome, cobalt, or nickel is stipulated, steel is referred to as "carbon steel." High and low carbon steel are the two subcategories of carbon steel. In accordance with what their names indicate, high-carbon steel has a higher proportion of carbon than low-carbon steel.

Low Carbon Steel comes in the form of mild steel. The primary distinction between carbon steel and mild steel is the amount of carbon in the former, which is more than in the latter.

Content of Carbon

  • Carbon content in carbon steel can range from 0.05 to 1.70 per cent by weight.

  • Mild steel contains 0.05–0.25% carbon by weight.


  • The cost of carbon steel is higher.

  • Mild steel costs less.


Mild steel is weaker than carbon steel. In comparison to mild steel, it is also fragile and susceptible to breaking readily. Since it is softer and weaker, mild steel may be easily welded into various shapes.

Heat Treatments

  • Heat treatments can be successfully applied to carbon steel.

  • Heat treatments cannot be properly applied to mild steel.

High Carbon Steel Uses

Wires of High Carbon Steel

Wires of High Carbon Steel

  • High carbon steel is used in cutting tools, springs, great-strength wire, and dies because of its high wear resistance and hardness.

  • Higher carbon steel is used in tyre reinforcement, forging grades, rail steels, spring steels, pre-stressed concrete, wire rope, and high-strength bars.

  • High carbon steel is used in cars to make chassis, vehicle frames, door panels, bushings, and many more.

  • Because of its ability to maintain an extremely sharp edge under pressure, it is used in cutting tools. High-carbon steel is also used to make masonry nails, which can easily be driven into the rock. 

High Carbon Steel Used In Cars

High Carbon Steel Used In Cars

Properties of High Carbon Steel

  • High carbon steel contains a carbon content of 0.60-1.25 wt %.

  • They are the least ductile.

  • High carbon steel has the highest hardness and toughness.

  • High-carbon steel is resistant to wear.


To conclude the article, if we look at our surroundings, most things are made up of high-carbon steel. Steel is an alloy, which is a mixture of elements and contains iron in high amounts. High Carbon Steel is a type of steel with high carbon content. It is widely used because of its unique features and properties such as high strength, wear resistance, hardness, ductility and many more.

It is used in kitchen wares such as knives, wire rope, and rail steel. In the automobile industry, it has its application as well. High Carbon steel is used in cars to make door panels, brushes, and much more.

FAQs on High Carbon Steel Uses

1. What are the examples of high-carbon steel?

Tool and die steels are some examples of high-carbon steel, which also contain extra alloying elements such as tungsten, molybdenum, vanadium, and chromium.

2. Is high carbon steel rust resistant?

Because carbon steel lacks the corrosion-resistant qualities of stainless steel, it does not rust. Stainless steel is tougher and more robust than carbon steel, however, when exposed to moisture, carbon steel can rust and corrode.

3. Is high carbon steel harder than stainless?

High Carbon steel is harder than stainless steel, has a matte surface, and has a higher tensile strength. Knives and other bladed tools that need to keep their groundbreaking longer are made from this material.