What’s the right material for your gasket?
Industry 4.0 has heralded a technological transformation in factories around the globe, with smart sensors and predictive analytics revolutionising production lines.
But even with increasingly smart technology, gaskets are a mainstay of any industry. Indeed, Market Insights Reports suggests that the semi-metallic industrial gaskets market is to grow at a CAGR of 10-15 percent until 2024.
It’s a steady increase and for anyone working in procurement, it’s a solid sign of the reliability of gaskets in the industrial field.
However, with so many variations available on the market, how do you know which gasket type is the right fit for your project?
So which material suits you best?
When you’re in the research phase, ask your provider at the point of order about which material suits your needs best.
In terms of gaskets, a good provider should have different materials to choose from, depending on the application it is required for.
Our high temperature gaskets are used in applications that are exposed to high temperature, high pressure and corrosive environments. The best materials to manufacture these gaskets are normally metal, carbon and/or graphite.
Gaskets made from metal have many use cases, depending on the application. Usually they can be flat metal, corrugated metal and hard or soft metals. Normal use here includes everything from low or high-pressure environments to low or high temperature environments.
Rubber is also a popular choice as it has a multitude of uses due to its flexible nature.
“Rubber is one of the more flexible materials to manufacture gaskets with,” says Thomas McCarthy, Abbey Seals’ gasket expert. “They are especially useful in applications that are subject to fluctuating temperatures.
“They are also efficient in reducing noise or vibrations in some fields. We use various rubbers including PVC, Silicone, Polyethylene, Polyurethane, Neoprene, EPDM, Viton and Nitrile.
“We always stock high levels of rubber gaskets for normal use but if any customer has a special request, this can be manufactured and sent the same day, if ordered before 4pm,” he adds.
Other gaskets available from Abbey Seals include soft-cut gaskets which are very easy to compress and therefore provide excellent seals in applications that have a low bolt load.
This type of gasket is normally manufactured from materials such as PTFE, flexible Graphite, and soft rubber.
If your sector deals with moisture, dust, powder, and air and gas retention, suitable materials include sponge and foam. These gaskets are ideal for use in relatively light bolt loads, and can be made in open cell and closed cell configurations.
Open cell provides more compressibility and closed cell does not easily compress – which is ideal for water exclusion and sound/gas retention.
“On top of that Abbey Seals can manufacture flammability rated foams (FMVSS) gaskets too,” says Thomas.
“We also distribute a number of premium gasket brands including Klinger and Phoenix. Klinger gaskets are made for tough environments and are the world leaders in petrochemical, aerospace, and chemical industries while Phoenix gaskets are ideal for high integrity sealing for demanding applications.
“Between our manufacturing arm and our stock, we really do have a gasket to suit all applications except for the motor vehicle sector. Our customers are working in many other sectors including the food and drink industry and the power industry.”
Other key considerations
While the material of the seal or gasket is a key consideration, other factors come into play too.
- Dimension: For example, the number and size of bolts, the pipe size, inner and outer diameter, etc.
- The grade of the bolts: Including the downward pressure exerted on the gasket and the level of compression/pressure. This will align with the type of material you’ll need.
- Temperature: Temperature fluctuations or if the temperature will be extreme (high or low) will determine the material you’ll need.
- Application: What will the application be? Factors include differing liquids, any required protections, and if the gasket will need to be made from non-conductive materials.
- Lifespan: Will the gasket be serviced regularly or is it intended to be fully operational for years?
To read more about choosing the right industrial gasket, head over to our guide on industrial gaskets.
Abbey Seals – experts in seals and gaskets
With over 30 years’ experience, we strive to use only the best materials to manufacture our seals and gaskets – but we also go a step further.
Our materials are fully certified and traceable to give our customers further peace of mind.
We always have a wide range of gaskets in stock but if you require a bespoke gasket or seal that we do not stock, we can do that too. It doesn’t matter if you are in the wilds of America or in the forests of Finland, we’ll deliver.
Contact us to find out more about our products or services or to place an order, or fill in the form below to get in touch.