A Guide to A36 Steel Properties

May 15, 2023 in Steel Supply / Structural Steel
a36 steel used in construction

Did you know that more than 1.6 billion tons of steel are produced each year?

Steel is popular for structural applications. It is strong, durable, and flexible, making it ideal for constructing buildings and infrastructure. What’s more, it is resistant to fire, moisture, and pests.

There are many different types of steel available, including A36 steel. To learn more about the properties of this type of steel, keep reading this helpful guide.

What is A36 Steel?

A36 steel is a type of low-carbon steel with a carbon content of less than 0.3%. This makes it easy to machine, weld, and form, making it a versatile and popular general-purpose steel. The low carbon content also means that heat treatment has limited effects on the steel.

Additionally, A36 steel contains small amounts of other alloying elements such as sulfur, silicon, manganese, and phosphorus. These elements help improve the steel’s mechanical and chemical properties.

However, since A36 steel does not contain high amounts of nickel or chromium, it may not exhibit excellent resistance to corrosion.

A36 Steel Properties

A36 steel is often labeled by mechanical properties and not a chemical composition. Here are some notable A36 steel characteristics:

Ultimate Tensile Strength

The ultimate tensile strength (UTS) of A36 steel ranges from 58,000 to 79,800 psi (400 to 550 MPa). UTS refers to the maximum stress a material can withstand in tension.

Usually, the A36 tensile strength is used to evaluate the material’s strength. The precise ultimate tensile strength is often determined by factors such as forming method and chemical composition.

Yield Tensile Strength

Yield strength is the stress at which the steel starts to bend or deform and will no longer return to its original shape once you remove the stress. A36 steel’s yield tensile strength is 36,300 psi or 250 MPa.


Density is a measure of a material’s mass per unit volume. It helps calculate the weight of a structure or component made of the material.

The A36 steel density is approximately 7.85 g/cm³ (0.284 lb/in³). Since it is relatively low, it makes it easy to work with. What’s more, it is suitable for applications where weight is a concern.

Elongation at Break

Elongation at break is a measure of a material’s ductility—the ability of it to deform without breaking. The elongation at break of A36 steel is 20.0% when tested in a 200mm gauge length. This means that when you stretch or pull A36 steel, it can extend up to 20.0% of its original length before breaking.

Additionally, the A36 steel has an elongation at a break of 23.0% when tested in a 50mm gauge length.

Modulus of Elasticity

The modulus of elasticity is a measure of a material’s ability to return to its original shape after subjection to stress. For A36 steel, the modulus of elasticity is 29,000 ksi or 200 GPa.

Bulk Modulus

Bulk modulus refers to the measurement of a material’s resistance to uniform compression. It is vital for evaluating the performance of materials like steel in applications where it is subjected to compressive loads. The bulk modulus of A36 steel is typically 20,300 ksi or 140 GPa.

Poissons Ratio

The Poisson’s ratio of A36 steel is 0.260. This means that for every 0.260 units of transverse strain, there will be 1 unit of longitudinal strain.

Shear Modulus

The shear modulus refers to the measure of a material’s resistance to shear stress. A36 steel sheer modulus stress is 11,500 ksi or 79.3 GPa.


A36 steel hardness depends on the heat treatment. But it’s usually around 119-162 Brinell hardness (HB).

A36 Steel Equivalent

A36 steel has equivalent materials with different standards. These include:

  • EN 10025
  • JIS G3101
  • DIN 17100

While the materials may have similar chemical and mechanical properties, they may differ in some specifications, such as the thickness or width range.

Get High-Quality Steel Today

Need A36 steel? Look no further, Intsel Steel East. We are your go-to steel supplier and deliver to your location.

Contact us today to learn more.

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