Gaskets and seals don’t last forever. However, they are designed, or they should be, last for a considerable period.
In this sense, it is vital to look at ways to preserve your gaskets in order to avoid any application downtime.
Downtime that involves additional expense and inefficiencies to you.
That’s why in this post, we look at some safeguarding measures that can be taken to achieve the longevity of your gaskets and seals and how your gasket manufacturer can help you.
Types of gasket failure
Unfortunately, there are two types of gasket failure:
Catastrophic failure – leading to instant leakage of your application.
Gradual deterioration – leading to leakage occurring over time, causing small yet significant leaks and problems.
Neither failure is a good sign for you or your production lines, and most gasket manufacturers like Specialist Sealing Products will work with customers to help provide the most suitable gasket and seal for the application intended to avoid such failures from occurring.
Common factors affecting gasket failure
- Torque loss and stress relaxation
- Uneven pressure experienced at the joints
- Uneven flange surfaces
It’s essential to keep a record of all failures as well as the reasons behind these failures, allowing you to ascertain any trends or patterns which may be occurring. It also helps to provide the right corrective measures to prevent failures from happening again.
In some cases, it’s not just about replacing the gasket but rather finding the root cause of the problem.
How to avoid gasket failure
Gasket failure can be a major headache for all those involved. It can wreak havoc on processes and systems as well as leading to costly downtime for you and your production lines.
Ultimately gasket failure can lead to a loss of productivity, it can be a significant drain on resources, and it has the potential to cause injury to personnel if not managed appropriately.
These are just a handful of the main reasons why it’s important to continuously ensure the safe and efficient running of all your plant machinery.
Preserving your gaskets
Below we’ve provided some of our top tips to help get the most out of your gaskets and seals.
Check for quality
Cheap gaskets are usually cheap for a reason. Often cheaper gaskets use more inferior quality materials as well as being found to be poorly manufactured.
Check the type of material used
Choosing the right filler material is vital to ensure its suitability within the intended application. Avoid dire consequences by opting for a gasket that is chemically compatible, and which works well in the required temperature exposure and fluctuations.
If a gasket is installed incorrectly, it will fail prematurely, linking it with downtime and replacement costs – both areas that you will want to avoid.
Rubber gaskets and drying out
If you’re using rubber gaskets, it’s crucial to be aware that these types of seals can dry out.
Typically found between the lid and the opening of a jar, for example, these rubbers are used to provide an airtight seal.
However, when exposed to heat, sun, and even dirt, these seals can, and do, dry out. This then makes them brittle, with the increased risk of the seal cracking, hence losing their overall effectiveness.
If you are using rubber seals, to help, we would recommend:
- Storing your product/application inside wherever possible, avoiding heat and direct sunlight
- Cleaning seals when you begin to notice dirt appearing (hot soapy water and a clean cloth is ideal)
- Drying seals thoroughly before using them again
- Conditioning the seals using olive oil and a polishing cloth can help to increase the longevity of the seal
At Specialist Sealing Products, we don’t manufacture any inferior products. We use our experience, knowledge, and expertise to supply the right gasket for the job every time.
Producing precision gaskets and joints is what we do best. Designing and manufacturing the highest quality seals all with laser precision, we work with companies and individuals all over the world, distributing the right gasket suited to the perfect application.
Read the next article: The Evolution of Gasket Solutions