How To Choose Seal or Gasket Material?
The importance of selecting the correct material for your die-cut seals or gaskets cannot be overstated. The wrong material can lead to seal or gasket failure, which can result in equipment damage, production delays, shortened product life, and even injury. Material selection should always begin with an evaluation of the die-cut seal or gasket application to ensure it meets your specific needs. However, several common factors should be considered, such as temperature, environment, industry standards, compression permanent deformation, and durometer.
Let’s take a closer look at these five things.
When choosing a material for a seal or gasket, the first thing to consider is temperature, because it changes the properties of the material. Very hot, very cold, or dramatically fluctuating temperatures can affect the material sealing performance, maximum allowable stress, and overall performance. Typically, material selection becomes more limited as the application temperature increases. In addition, the amount of time material is exposed to the maximum temperature will guide your material selection.
Several environmental factors can affect the life of a gasket. In addition to the temperatures mentioned above, these four factors are critical to the success or failure of the seal or gasket.
- UV exposure: UV exposure can cause seal or gasket degradation.
- Moisture resistance: Absorbent materials will deteriorate when exposed to moisture, which can lead to gasket failure.
- Chemical resistance: Acidic, corrosive, toxic, or abrasive chemicals can affect the integrity of the seal or gasket.
- BSR and NVH reduction: Vibration can damage sensitive components, leading to product failure and distracting noise.
3. Product/Industry Standards
The standards for seals or gaskets vary depending on your product, industry and location. Industries such as automotive, food service, and pharmaceutical have specific material requirements that must be met. It is important to work with a manufacturer who can ensure you meet the proper certifications.
In addition, the following are some of the broad certifications that may apply.
ASTM – American Society for Testing and Materials
UL – International Safety
Military Specification – Military
AMS – Aerospace Material Specification
FDA – Food and Drug Administration
ANSI – American National Standards Institute
NSF – National Sanitation Foundation
4. Compression Permanent Deformation
Compressive deformation of a material is the amount of permanent deformation that a seal or gasket undergoes under pressure or external force. The performance of the seal or gasket will degrade over time and repeated compression due to gaps, leaks, or application failures will reduce the effectiveness of the seal.
It is important to note that material recovery capability is more important for cyclic compression and constant compression. The criteria for measuring compression permanent deformation vary; therefore, you should work with a trusted partner to help you select the best material for your application and perform real-world testing to determine if it is suitable for your intended use.
5. Hardness tester
A hardness tester is a standardized method of measuring the hardness of a material or, for foam, its hardness. The hardness tester has a measurement scale ranging from 0-100, indicating the force required to achieve a certain level of indentation. Lower numbers indicate soft, pliable materials, while higher numbers indicate harder materials. Variations in material hardness require a tester with different probe shapes and spring loads to produce a specific amount of indentation. Testers are selected by material classification, as listed below.
Shore 00 – Extremely soft materials such as foam and cellular sponge
Shore A – solid rubber materials used for O-rings and rubber sheets
Shore D – Hard plastics and very hard rubber compounds
The hardness gauge is a critical factor in sealing performance. The seal or gasket material must be soft enough to fill the gap between two surfaces without extruding from the joint, yet hard enough to withstand the pressure or impact it will encounter. Selecting the material hardness for your application can be challenging. It is recommended to work with an experienced manufacturer to determine the best, most cost-effective material for your application.
Sealing solutions supplier
BEIJING JIANKE HUIFENG SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY is a manufacturer of high-performance sealing for hydraulic tester and pipeline solutions with an emphasis on safety, longevity, and productivity.
We are the largest international supplier of sealing solutions from China in terms of volume, while we are also leaders in terms of quality of product and customer care.
We work in partnership with our customers, industry associations, and governmental entities to understand their unique sealing challenges and respond with innovative solutions that keep people safe while increasing their profitability.