Finding the Right Hydraulic Seal

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If you want to keep fluid from leaking between the compartments of your hydraulic cylinder, it is vital you have the proper seal. Seals can come in two main forms: static and dynamic. Static seals are used between parts that are fixed. More commonly seals are dynamic, found between parts that are in relative motion. These seals protect the dynamic reciprocating motion between either the piston rod and head or the piston and cylinder bore. It is important to know what can cause your hydraulic seals to fail so you can know how to choose the right seal for your needs.

Causes of Failure

Some of the most common causes of hydraulic seal failure are hardening, wear, and improper installation. High temperatures caused by high fluid or operating temperatures can cause the seal to harden. It can lose its elasticity or crack, causing it to fail. Sometimes the placement of the seal or lack of sufficient lubrication can cause excessive wear or damage, rendering the seal ineffective. Lack of knowledge, contamination, or incorrect sizing can lead to improper installation, allowing your hydraulic seal to fail.

Choice of Seal

It is important to fully understand your project so you can choose the right hydraulic cylinder seals by size. Seals can come in many different sizes and types and can be made from a variety of materials. You need to know the difference between rod seals, wipers, and o-rings. You need to be prepared with the fluid type, temperature range, and hardware dimensions you are working with so you can be sure to choose the right seal. The right seal can prevent fluid leakage and protect your equipment from the common causes of failure.

Many causes of hydraulic seal failure can be prevented by understanding common mistakes and taking care to choose the right seal size.