To produce their goods and get orders out the door, manufacturers rely on an array of containers and equipment. There are usually two options available for Automotive Manufacturing. Let’s compare Wire Baskets vs Plastic Containers.

Comparing Wire Baskets vs Plastic Containers for Automotive Manufacturing

While both metal and plastic are extensive material categories that may get broken down into hundreds of different alloys and formulae, there are a few common characteristics that should help you decide which basket material is ideal for your application:


When it comes to tensile strength, metals like steel outperform plastic any day. While the tensile strength of different metals varies depending on the alloy, when ventilation holes get added, plastic’s overall strength diminishes considerably more quickly than wire mesh or sheet metal. Furthermore, many metals can be twisted or molded without losing their strength, unlike plastics.

Ultimately, metal is a far more appealing material option for a cleaning basket design when the parts are heavy, given the ventilation requirements of most elements in cleaning baskets.

Water and Chemical Absorption

In general, steel is a lot easier to clean than plastic. Some substances, such as water, oil, grease, and even solvents, tend to penetrate plastic, causing it to discolor.

Because chemical residue continues to build up, this can even jeopardize the cleanliness of the parts cleaning basket. It is also possible for the residue to go into the cleaned areas. It is considerably easier to clean and disinfect steel because it does not stain as deeply as plastic polymers.

Corrosion Resistance

Many plastics get made with a certain chemical resistance in mind. On the other hand, most plastics are not well suited to getting submerged in strong acid or alkali solutions. Once damaged, plastic baskets quickly decompose and become unusable.

Depending on the alloy, the corrosion resistance of metal varies substantially.

For example, normal iron or simple carbon steel has weak corrosion resistance and rusts quickly when exposed to chemicals when exposed to chemicals. On the other hand, many stainless steel alloys are extremely resistant to corrosion, even when submerged completely.

Therefore, the advantage depends on the type of plastic or metal you use for the basket and the chemicals you utilize.

Making the Choice

When it comes to wire baskets vs plastic containers, the answer really depends on your application. Metal makes greater sense for a parts cleaning basket in most industrial applications, notably in automotive. Formed wire inserts can be used in plastic containers for the best of both worlds. Keep you parts protected with a custom solution from Salco.

Salco’s custom wire baskets:

  • Are stackable
  • Reduce contamination
  • Last longer
  • Can be made to withstand heat treating processes, wash processes, and other treatments.

For your custom steel wire basket needs, contact Salco today.