Service temperatures are simple but your sealing requirements are not. Learn about the different types of gasket-related temperatures – and why service temperature isn’t all you need to consider.
Service temperatures are the minimum and maximum temperatures that your heavy equipment gaskets must withstand after installation. That sounds simple enough but consider that service temperatures aren’t necessarily the same temperatures at which gaskets are installed. Service temperatures also differ from the gasket material’s glass transition temperature, the point at which major changes in hardness and elasticity occur. In addition, there’s a relationship between service temperatures and thermal expansion, the increase in size that happens when a rubber material is heated.
Elasto Proxy, a trusted supplier to the heavy equipment industry, helps original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) to select the right gasket materials based on service temperatures and many other variables. We fabricate your gaskets with water jet cutting, provide a choice of gasket bonding methods, and offer gasket taping for ease of installation. Contact us to request a quote or keep reading to learn more about why temperature can get so complicated. You’ll find a helpful example and a convenient chart with service temperatures for common compounds.
The Trouble With Temperature: An Example
A heavy equipment manufacturer in the U.S. Midwest needs to install door gaskets on tractors that will be used in the tropics. Sales are booming and the manufacturer doesn’t have enough factory space to keep all of its work-in-process indoors. The manufacturer has a large parking lot, so tractors that need door gaskets are parked there. Because it’s winter, the gasket installers can’t use a liquid adhesive that cures at room temperature. They can install taped gaskets instead, but only if the tape’s application temperatures can withstand the outdoor temperatures. Otherwise, the tape won’t stick in the cold.
The gasket material also needs to support the installation. At colder temperatures, rubber becomes hard and brittle. If the glass transition temperature is reached, the loss of elasticity that occurs will make the gasket even more difficult to install. None of this, of course, has anything to do with the environment in which the finished tractors will be used. In other words, the application temperature in the wintry U.S. Midwest is much colder than the service temperatures on banana or sugar plantations. That’s why the heavy equipment manufacturer needs to think about temperature broadly.
In the tropics, the tractor door gaskets face significantly warmer temperatures. Humidity resistance is also required. In terms of temperature alone, a gasket material with a high rate of thermal expansion could be problematic. If the door seals increase in size too much, the doors won’t close readily. The warmth of the tropics could also cause the gaskets to become significantly softer, increasing the risk of compression set. If this occurs, the gaskets won’t return to their original dimensions when the compressive stress of a closed door is removed. Then, when the tropical rains arrive, the seals could leak.
Service Temperatures Chart
This chart shows the maximum and minimum service temperatures for some common heavy equipment gasket materials. Note that some temperature are rounded to the nearest integer.
Ask Elasto Proxy for Heavy Equipment Gaskets
Do you work for a heavy equipment OEM? Elasto Proxy can help you to select the best gasket materials for your sealing application. We can also save you time and money with custom-fabricated gaskets that help you to reduce your true costs. That’s not all either. With our kitting, assembly packaging, and warehousing capabilities, we can provide you with even greater value.
Contact us to learn more.