You probably are already aware that not all stoves are made of the same material. The same goes for the stove burners. Essentially, stove burners or eyes as some may call them are made of different materials; you may find some made out of aluminum, others out of cast iron, and many others made out of brass or stainless steel.

Brass Star Burner

When it comes to cooking, getting an efficient cooktop is mandatory, and the type of burners you choose plays an important part in that. However, it’s not a matter of which is good or bad, as most of the time, It all boils down to personal preferences.

Choosing the suitable material for your stove burner will go a long way towards ensuring efficiency in your cooking and will most probably, save you a buck or two depending on the choice you make.

Today, we will look at brass burners vs cast iron banners, compare their advantages and disadvantages, and help you decide which of the two you might want to opt for depending on your use cases.

What is Brass?

Brass, an alloy, is primarily made of copper and zinc. The proportions of zinc and copper vary with the kind of brass being produced.

Although the most common type of brass is made up of 67 percent copper and 33 percent zinc, the composition of copper may range from 55 percent to 95 percent. On the other hand, the amount of zinc may vary from 5 percent to 45 percent.

Brass Burner

In terms of appearance, brass usually appears bright gold. It can, however, also be silvery-white or reddish-gold depending on the percentage of copper and zinc used. You are likely to get a rosier tone with more copper, while a higher percentage of zinc yields a silvery tone.

Advantages of Brass

  • In addition to creating a stunning and unique pop of color, brass has remarkable durability and withstands wear and tear much better than other metals. In the same vein, brass can withstand even the most severe weather conditions, including rain and snow. For this reason, it is ideal for outdoor grills.
  • Although brass has less thermal conductivity because of its high density, it spreads heat more evenly. This characteristic enables it to have superior heat retention, an excellent feature for a stove burner.
  • Brass has a melting point of around 1600 °F to 1720 °F, depending on composition. Because of this relatively low melting point, brass is more malleable and easier to cast compared to other metals such as cast iron or bronze.
  • Cleaning brass stove burners becomes effortless because brass is resistant to corrosion and more resistant stains. Even more, brass can resist galvanic corrosion from saltwater.

Disadvantages of Brass

  • Brass is quite dense, therefore, has less thermal conductivity. This means that it takes more time to heat up.
  • Brass can be quite expensive in comparison to cast iron. It’s for this reason that brass burners are more commonly used on high-end ranges.
  • Given its premium nature, brass requires more care and maintenance.

What is Cast Iron?

Cast iron consists of iron and between 2-4 percent carbon. The composition may include amounts of silicon, sulfur, manganese, and phosphorus though these are usually limited to small quantities.

Additionally, differing amounts of nickel, molybdenum, and chromium may be included to produce cast iron for special applications. This type of cast iron is resistant to wear, corrosion and heat.

Despite excellent thermal properties for burners, cast iron is rarely used these days for gas burners. In fact, cast iron material is more commonly used for the construction of stove grates and stovetop cookware.

Cast Iron Cookware

Often, you will come across two variants of cast iron depending on the silicon composition. These include the so-called white iron or gray iron.

Compared to white iron, gray iron contains more silicon, is less hard, and is more machinable. The gray iron variant is the most common one and is used to make things like car engine parts like engine blocks and cylinder heads and of course, gas burners.

Advantages of Cast Iron

  • While cast iron has less thermal conductivity than brass and heats more slowly, its high density provides excellent heat retention for stable heat radiation.
  • If you are looking for a durable burner, cast iron is not an issue. The tensile strength of cast iron is well adequate and makes it very durable.
  • Cast iron’s high melting point of 2200 °F makes it more resistant to warping and softening at higher temperatures.
  • Compared to other materials, cleaning cast iron is relatively easy. All you need is an ordinary dishwashing soap and some scrubbing with a non-metallic brush.

Disadvantages of Cast Iron

  • Although cast iron is a cheap material comparably, it has a higher melting point of about 2100 to 2190 °F. Consequently, it is more expensive to cast compared to other materials such as brass and copper.
  • Cast iron is easily stained and rusts readily. That would mean regular cleaning for you and avoiding anything that makes the burner prone to rusting.
  • Compared to brass, cast iron has half thermal conductivity. It, therefore, heats a turd slower.
  • Cast iron is more brittle, therefore, harder to machine compared to either aluminum or brass.

Other types of Stove Burners

Stove burners are not limited to brass and cast iron. Here are some of the most common types of gas stove burners on the market today;


In most households, aluminum burners are still very effective. These kinds of burners tend to heat faster, although their heat retention period is less than brass.

Although aluminum burners are less costly, they tend to have a shorter lifespan than brass burners. In terms of durability, aluminum burners are less durable.

Stainless Steel

Stainless Steel burners, on the other hand, heat much faster compared to their cast iron counterparts. This also means that they cool down faster, a factor that may save the little ones in your home from burns. However, compared to cast iron, the heat retention of steel is relatively low.

Stainless Steel Burner

Stainless Steel burners are also quite cheap to manufacture, and combined with the many advantages that they come with, they are the most popular type of stove burners available on the market today.

You can read about our comparison of Stainless Steel burners vs Brass burners here.

Summary: Brass Burners vs Cast Iron Burners

In a hurry? Here is a summary of the pros and cons of each type of metal:

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Final Word

If you’re in the market for a new gas stove or range, the choice of burners is quite an important one. Ultimately you should be aiming for a set of burners that combine durability with affordability.

While brass burners come with many advantages, their price point makes them out of reach for many people, and thus many find themselves having to choose between cast iron, stainless steel, and aluminum burners.

For most use cases though, stainless steel burners are the most recommended option as they provide the sweet spot for durability, affordability, and features.

When it comes to the brass burners vs cast iron burners debacle, we’d choose brass every day though, that might not be a practical option for many, in which case, we’d recommend buyers to first check out stainless steel burners before turning their heads to cast iron.