O-rings are commonly used to seal areas within fluid-power systems. In simple terms, they assume the shape of a doughnut and are often made of rubber. Once installed in cavities (glands), they can then be compressed to completely seal the gap. In the gland is zero clearance, which provides the ultimate seal required to block the flow of fluids and gases within. As simple as it may sound, this kind of arrangement can be very effective in serving fluid-power systems. However, the successful use of rubber O-rings within such systems requires tactful design, careful selection, and proper installation procedures.
Reasons for O-Ring Failure
When rubber O rings are failing in their application, it is often due to a combination of various adverse effects of multiple environmental factors which may include incorrect O-ring size, inadequate lubrication, incompatibility between the item or accessory and various environmental elements it comes into contact with, improper installation, and improper gland design, which allows for incorrect compression and not sufficient room for displacement.
The combination of acting stressors that impact on O-rings is often complex or challenging to evaluate, which makes it very important to consult a professional engineer or technician to help with the evaluation and to advise on the best way forward. These professionals will often test the compound and size of the accessory in the real environment where it is expected to serve.
Common failures may be difficult to spot because of a lack of visible sign on the seal:
Failure pattern. Since visual clues are often lacking, this can be one of the most difficult seal failures to diagnose.
Problem sources. These are problems such as parting lines on the accessory following the molding process, insufficient compression, eccentric-shaped components, tolerance stack-up, and improper seal-gland volume relationship.
Other problems may include extrusion and nibbling, abrasion, oxidation, heat hardening, excessive swell, damage during installation, spiral failure, and weather/ozone cracking.
Choosing the Best O-Ring Material for a Fluid-Sealing Application
O-rings are commonly used in fluid-power systems to seal cavities and silicone material is often used in the manufacture of these seals. To seal off connections that exist between tubes and pipes, technicians often use O-rings, which ensure there is no air or liquid seeping through the designated area. However, for these accessories to perform effectively, they have to be made of the right material. Therefore, choosing the right material is of paramount importance if you want your installed accessory to serve you for a long time before requiring a replacement. O-ring failures can potentially cause fatal crashes. Some of the factors to consider when choosing the best material for your accessory include working temperature, the standard colors, the hardness scores (shore A), and possible limitations. While making the right choice can be very challenging, working with a knowledgeable technician to advise you on how to select the right O-ring for your respective application is often recommended.
Whether you are in London, Essex, Kent, or Heathrow, you are going to need O-rings someday. If you are having problems choosing the right accessory for your machinery, consider seeking an expert opinion of an engineer or technician with vast experience in handling such accessories.
You can also visit Completely Hydraulic on line for more spares and hydraulic related services too.