Understanding Hydraulic Seals
Hydraulic seals are an important component of any piece of machinery. Soft and non-metallic, these seals block fluid from entering the wrong parts of a piece of machinery and are critical for ensuring your vehicles, construction equipment, and other pieces of machinery work the way you expect them to.
For a seal to work properly, it cannot carry too heavy of a load. When you can, add bearings or wear rings to the machinery to ensure the load isn’t too heavy for the hydraulics. Isolated tests aren’t a good testing method because the size different between tests and applications are often different. Perform multiple localized testing to ensure you have the proper load. Don’t forget to consider impact as well. Some materials cannot handle the high loads on wear surfaces that impact conditions can create.
Hydraulic seals require the right pressure to work properly. The wrong pressure can cause deformities and change how effective the seal is. When considering pressure, remember that pressure that rises too quickly can cause fluid to get through the seal. The higher the pressure, the thinner the film is as well. You’ll need to account for potential spikes in the pressure due to the plumbing or valves as well. Finally, when testing pressure, concentrate only on the spikes to ensure the proper pressurization and speed.
Speed is also a significant contribution into how hydraulic seals perform. The motion parameters, acceleration, and cycles all factor into creating the perfect speed. Speed changes the operating cycle and must match well between each component of the seal to ensure the best performance. When one part functions too slowly compared to the rest of the parts, it can cause a pressure trap. Speed may also change the properties of the fluid by raising its temperature, causing a breakdown of viscosity, or even degrading it.
When choosing your seals, it’s important to consider all the components to ensure you purchase the right ones to meet your machinery’s needs. From basic seals to high pressure hydraulic shaft seals, the possibilities are many. If you’re unsure what you need, be sure to ask questions of a professional before making your purchase.