Deciding which type of gasket material to use can depend on many factors including temperature, chemical compatibility, joint pressure and application. Temperature is an important factor to consider because each material has a different temperature capacity. If the application reaches high temperatures, it is essential to choose a material such as metal that is made to withstand that kind of heat consistently. Choosing a material that has a lower temperature capacity would not prove useful, as the gasket would be unable to provide a proper seal for very long if at all. Chemical compatibility should also be considered; it is essential to choose a gasket material that will not break down as a result of the type of liquid or gas flowing through it. Teflon is a good material to use on applications that have heavy chemical flow because Teflon is generally very non-reactive. EPDM, however, cannot withstand certain chemicals such as petroleum-based oils and would break down in that environment. Joint pressure, the pressure that will be put on the joint that the gasket is sealing, is important because the more pressure that is used in an application, the stronger the gasket material needs to be. If a weaker material is chosen, the gasket may not seal properly and could wear out quickly. It is crucial to choose a material that will meet the specific needs of each application; otherwise, leaks could occur.
Quick links to Gasket Materials Information
Types of Gasket Materials
There are many different types of gasket materials; three commonly used types include metal, rubber and Teflon. Metal gaskets are often made from materials such as steel, copper and nickel. These strong materials work well in high-temperature, high-pressure applications. A sub-category of metal gaskets is jacketed gaskets. These gaskets have a metal jacket that surrounds a soft filler; the jacket still provides that high durability, but the added filler, often graphite or ceramic, helps give the material a more flexible seal, particularly to help cover uneven surfaces where plain metal is too flat to do so. Metal gaskets are frequently used for applications in the automotive and transportation industries. Rubber gaskets are a widely used material because they are highly durable, flexible and work very well where large amounts of chemical flow and atmospheric elements are present. Synthetic rubbers such as Neoprene and EPDM are popular choices since both materials are made to withstand temperatures from around -60° to 300° F. Neoprene is an inert substance, and EPDM is extremely water and weather-resistant, making them ideal gasket materials for applications in the automotive and waterproofing industries. Teflon is another popular material choice because of its non-reactivity. Also, Teflon cannot withstand high temperatures or pressures but has the lowest friction coefficient of any existing solid and can handle extreme cold flow and chemical flow without breaking down. Gasket materials are manufactured by die-cutting to fit the specific needs of each application.
Material Based on Application
Gasket materials are various materials with sealant qualities that are used in gasketing applications. Gaskets help seal gaps on machine parts to keep liquids and gasses from leaking; they are used in many major industries such as the automotive, aerospace and manufacturing industries.
Gaskets are used when two or more adjoining parts must be tightly sealed together. They are most commonly used in connecting items such as pipes, hoses, engines, motors and many other applications that require tight seals. Gaskets are made from many different materials including rubber, polyurethane, neoprene, EPDM, Teflon, Viton, silicone, metals, cork, felt, paper, fiberglass, and many more. They are often made from flat materials and are punched out of a sheet of that material through a process called die cutting. Here the sheet of material is cut out in the process of stamping or cutting two dimensional parts. Some gaskets are made for special applications like exhaust, high temperatures, cold temperatures, weather resistance and more. Depending on the application, there is a specific material that will provide for the best gasket and sealing combination to be made.
Types of Gaskets
Neoprene gaskets can be used in applications that have a low temperature range such as refrigeration, freezers, and air conditioners. They also have a great resistance towards substances such as petroleum, heat, sunlight, and oil which make them present in the gas, petrochemical, oil, power, and utility industries. EPDM gaskets have one of the largest temperature ranges from about -67 to 302 degrees Fahrenheit. They have great resistance to ultraviolet rays and weathering which make them best known for their use in the automotive industry as sealing devices and weather stripping on automobiles. Silicone gaskets are generally heat resistant and very flexible. They are typically found in use on consumer products such as swimming goggles and food storage containers. Viton gaskets are great for use when chemicals are involved as the material has a great resistance to chemical corrosion. They are often used in the gas and fuel industry or in use for the transfer of chemicals.