What are the Commonly Used Materials to Manufacture Hydraulic Seals

Hydraulic seals are exposed to varying temperature ranges, high pressures, harsh liquids, and chemicals when used in industrial applications. To offer unfailing performance in critical environments, they should be manufactured using quality tested raw materials. Since the quality of raw materials greatly determines the durability of the end product, it is important to select the materials with utmost care.

In this blog, four major polymeric material groups that are commonly used in the manufacture of hydraulic seals are discussed.

Hydraulic Seals Manufacturing – Material Options

Hydraulic seal manufacturers rely on the below listed materials to produce seals that last longer with prolonged usage under stressful environments.

  • Thermoplastic Elastomers: Polyurethane (PU) and Thermoplastic Polyester Elastomers (TPC) are suitable in producing seals, as they feature:
    • Outstanding chemical and hydrolysis resistance.
    • Good extrusion resistance.
    • Excellent wear and pressure resistance.
    • Easy to install.
    • Outstanding elasticity and flexibility.
  • Rubber: The commonly used options under this category include, Nitrile Rubber (NBR), Hydrogenated Nitrile Rubber (HNBR), Fluorocarbon Rubber (FKM, FPM). They are chosen as they:
    • Can withstand a variety of hydraulic fluids
    • Are suitable for a wide range of temperatures.
    • Exhibit outstanding resistance to weathering and UV rays.
    • Exhibit excellent wear resistance.
  • Polytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE) : PTFE and its compounds possess several superior traits, making them a suitable choice to produce hydraulic seals. They are widely accepted as they:
    • Show outstanding chemical resistance.
    • Exhibit low coefficient of friction.
    • Possess good wear or extrusion resistance.
  • Thermoplastics and Thermosets : When the requirement calls for producing seals with outstanding mechanical strength, then thermoplastics, thermosets, and their composites are the best options. They are largely preferred as they showcase:
    • Extreme hardness and stiffness.
    • Good chemical resistance.
    • Excellent frictional properties.

Selection Criteria

Selecting the right seal material is crucial, as it determines the overall quality and durability of hydraulic seals. Your manufacturer can suggest appropriate materials, which will meet specific application needs.

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