Seal Contaminants: What They Are and How to Prevent Them
Posted on 2017/06/19 | Cliff | SealsNeglecting routine maintenance can cost you in seal performance or, in some cases, end with catastrophic failure. Prolonged downtime will incur losses that exceed the temporary cost of preventative maintenance. It’s important to identify seal contaminants and their sources before they turn into larger issues. Here are some tips on what to look for and how to deal with them.
- Here are some typical contaminants you’ll come across:
- From original manufacture: debris, casting sand, paint, pipe sealant, cleaning rag fibers and weld spatters
- Pre-existing particle matter in system fluid before being entered into the system (through lack of pre-filtering)
- Ingressed contamination through rod/piston seals, component seals or poorly fitted covers, such as dirt, mud, water, dust and oil
- Ingressed particles that attract or generate larger particles causing abrasion, corrosion, cavitation, erosion and fatigue from the chafing between moving parts
- Catalytic contamination from water, air or heat causing chemical reaction with other particles in a fluid