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Flange Faces

As you start to consider purchasing flanges or gaskets, you’ll see a variety of terms used that you may not have come across before. Flange faces are the surface area that will receive the gasket, allowing them to come together to create a seal when put under...

Octagonal Ring Type Joints

A ring-type joint is a metallic ring that is machined to sit between two mating surfaces, where it will be compressed to provide a high-quality and reliable seal. Ring-type joints are vital components in various applications across multiple industry sectors,...

Blind Flange vs Blank Flange

Small pieces of mechanical equipment flanges continually play a vital role across numerous industries and applications. In essence, we use flanges to connect pipes to each other, with flanges also found in valves and specific application fittings too. Due to the...

Types of Flanges

Businesses in a variety of industries rely on flanges to join pipes or components together or to keep equipment secured to a surface. When it comes to choosing the best types of flange for your processes, you’ll want to take the time to research the different options...

Threaded Flange

Threaded flanges are probably the most recognisable of all flanges due to their screw thread design that is used to connect it to the pipe. Threaded flanges, also known as screwed flanges (for obvious reasons), require a male and female thread to create a connection...

Slip On Flange

A slip-on flange can also be known as a hubbed flange, which, as the name suggests, has a hub with a very low profile. Why is this important? Because this type of ring type joint gasket has an internal diameter larger than the connecting pipe, allowing you to slide it...

Weld Neck Flange

Also known as tapered hub flanges or high hub flanges, weld neck flanges are a specific type of gasket with a protruding ridge and long neck used to connect pipework and provide you with a high-quality seal. Weld neck flanges, in particular, are a popular choice when...

Nitrile vs Viton® – What is the Difference?

As you start to make a decision about what type of O-rings to purchase for your business, you might wonder what material is the most suitable for your unique needs. Every business operation has different requirements for their O-rings, such as the temperature,...

Aflas vs Viton

When it comes to choosing O ring suppliers in the UK, you’ll find that there are a wide range of materials on offer for you to choose from. Many people find that the options can seem quite overwhelming, with some materials having similar properties but offering...

EPDM Gasket

Both the automotive and construction industries have started to use EPDM gaskets more frequently in recent times. This rubber material is UV light resistant and has many fantastic properties that make this part highly effective for a wide range of processes. Keep...

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Common Reasons Why O-Ring Fails

Industrial O-rings common failureIntroduction

O-ring failure can have expensive and severe consequences. If you want to ensure optimal performance of your design under all possible circumstances, it is important that you acquaint yourself with the most common reasons for O-ring failure.

Common Failures

Abrasion

Abrasion is an O-ring failure that is common in dynamic applications. This is due to repetitive contact and, ultimately, friction between the O-ring surface and housing groove. There are mainly two reasons for abrasion, namely insufficient lubrication and an improper surface finish. Abrasion can be detected by looking at the sliding contact faces of the O-ring. If it has a grazed surface, you may be running the risk of abrasion.

Chemical Attack

If the O-ring’s main elastomer is incompatible with the application media, the O-ring may fail due to a chemical attack. Chemical attacks can be worsened by extreme temperatures and if the O-ring is under stress. A chemical attack on the O-ring can be detected by looking for blisters, cracking, and discolouration on the in the O-ring.

Chemical Swell

When the O-ring’s elastomer allows ingress of chemical media, the O-ring can swell and lose its sealing ability. It can also lose its tensile strength. Like a chemical attack, this failure is due to lacking compatibility with the chemical media. Monitor the size of the O-ring and compare its current size to its original size to determine if there is chemical swelling.

Compression Set

This is when the circular cross-section of the O-ring becomes less circular and flattened on the sides to increase in temperature. If the O-ring’s elastomer is not compatible with extreme fluctuations in temperature, it can diminish the O-ring’s sealing ability as it doesn’t revert to its original shape when the temperature goes back to normal.

Installation Damage

O-rings that are damaged to careless or improper installation can result in failure. Incorrect sizing, cuts on the surface of the elastomer, dirt, or twisted O-ring, can result in lacking sealing ability. Installation damage can be caused in many different ways, and it can also happen if the O-ring is the correct size for the design.

Solution

There is no one solution for common O-ring failures. Failure may be due to many different circumstances and conditions. There are, however, overlapping causes of O-ring shortcomings that one should take note of.

Incompatibility with chemical media can cause an entire array of common-ring failures. If the material or elastomer of the O-ring is not compatible with the chemical media, it can reduce the O-ring’s sealing integrity. The chemical media or operating fluid may also ingress into the elastomer. To prevent this, make sure that chemical media and elastomer are compatible with each other.

The O-ring’s ability to cope with extreme temperatures is also important to prevent a number of common O-ring failures. If the sealing properties of an O-ring’s elastomer change under different temperatures are can also lead to failure. This is especially important when it comes to aircraft or vehicles that travel or flies in extreme circumstances.

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