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    Common Causes Of O-Ring Failure and Solution

    The failure of O-rings can cause many accidents and bring great losses to users.

    In order to obtain the best service life and reliability of O-rings, designers must select the correct material for O-rings and have an in-depth understanding of the various factors that affect the sealing function.

    Common O-ring Failure Modes

    Causes of O-Ring Failure INSTALLATION DAMAGE

    Appearance
    The surface shows cut slashes.

    Causes

    • Cut by sharp grooves or parts
    • Contamination of raw materials during production
    • Poor quality or low hardness seals

    Solution

    • Appropriate groove design
    • Avoid sharp parts
    • Use good quality or harder seals
    Causes of O-Ring Failure ABRASION

    Appearance
    O-ring has been pressed parallel, and the surface has been scuffed by dust.

    Causes

    • Seals with rough and uneven surfaces
    • Particulate dust erosion during initial use and manufacturing
    • Movement of grooves or poor groove design
    • Rapidly rising or falling temperatures

    Solution

    • Applying proper lubricant to reduce friction
    • Reduce loading on poor grooves
    • Choose manufacturer carefully
    Causes of O-Ring Failure OVER COMPRESSION

    Appearance
    The surface shows a ragged edge in the inner diameter at low pressure.

    Causes

    • Excessive compression
    • Poor quality or low hardness
    • Seal size larger than the groove
    • Irregular or sharp nature of grooves
    • Surface voids

    Solution

    • Use good quality or high hardness
    • Proper groove design
    • Do not cut corners on the processing time
    • Be careful not to buy products that are too cheap
    Causes of O-Ring Failure CHEMICAL DEGRADATION

    Appearance
    The surface of this seal shows blisters, cracks, cavities, discoloration, and other reactions.

    Causes
    Inability to resist certain chemical properties plus or too hot environment.

    Solution
    Use a product that is resistant to certain chemicals or has high heat resistance.

    Causes of O-Ring Failure EXPLOSIVE DECOMPRESSION

    Appearance
    The surface of this seal shows blisters, unevenness, pits, etc.

    Causes

    • Rapidly rising or falling air pressure
    • Poor quality or low hardness seals

    Solution

    • Use good quality or hard seals
    • Slow rise or fall of air pressure
    Causes of O-Ring Failure PLASMA DEGRADATION

    Appearance
    Discoloration, erosion damage, and powder residue on the surface.

    Causes

    • Chemical ion and electron impact
    • Poor groove design
    • Chemical incompatibility between the seal and the process

    Solution

    • Use a seal that is resistant to ions
    • Check the design of the grooves to avoid the impact of ions
    • Use products that are resistant to certain chemical properties
    Causes of O-Ring Failure SPIRAL FAILURE

    Appearance
    The surface has been cut and spiral marks.

    Causes

    • Irregular mold line or uneven surface
    • No proper lubrication during installation
    • Tight grooves
    • Installation of grooves that move in parallel
    • Poor quality or low hardness
    • Poor installation skills of the technician

    Solution

    • Correct installation, lubrication, and design
    • Use good quality and high hardness
    • Improve technician training
    Causes of O-Ring Failure OUTGASSING EXTRACTION

    Appearance
    This shows that the seal cannot be completely sealed.

    Causes

    • Use in unsuitable grooves
    • Pressure plus temperature in a high vacuum environment
    • Low hardness or high plasticity
    • Insufficient processing time

    Solution

    • Avoid using seals with high plasticity
    • Be careful not to buy overly expensive products
    • Ensure proper size in the groove to avoid gas leakage
    • Correctly calculate the ratio of temperature to pressure
    • Choose the right material
    Causes of O-Ring Failure Thermal Degradation

    Appearance
    The surface is bursting and sticking to the workpiece due to the high temperature.

    Causes

    • In an overheated environment
    • The surface is too smooth

    Solution

    • Use thermally stable
    • Select seals with matte surfaces
    Causes of O-Ring Failure Contamination

    Appearance
    Contaminants appear on the surface or along the raw edge.

    Causes

    • Poor processing environment, raw materials, personnel, etc. …….
    • Mold is not maintained and cleaned on time
    • Aging or deterioration of the artificial rubber

    Solution

    • Specify the level of contaminants on the package, including manufacturing and packaging.
    • Molds should not be mixed according to the production rubber material.
    Causes of O-Ring Failure Compression

    Appearance
    The surface has a flat cross-section.

    Causes

    • Excessive compression
    • Rapidly rising or falling temperatures
    • Poor quality and sloppy manufacturing processes
    • Seals that cut corners on materials

    Solution

    • Switch to a higher degree of compression distortion
    • Increase the hardness of the O-ring
    • Ensure quality

    With the advantages of simple structure, easy processing, and reliable performance, O-ring seals are widely used in hydraulic components and systems.

    The above typical failure cases can show that failure analysis is a very effective method to solve seal leakage and damage. This method is simple and easy to implement, and it is easy to find the focus of the problem and target to solve it.

    Any form of structure of mechanical seal has its advantages, but there are inevitably some limitations, only through the example, master its principles, from a variety of considerations, comprehensive analysis of the causes of failure, and then for different equipment, different working conditions, respectively, to analyze, select the best matching program to solve the mechanical seal field failure.

    If you have any other questions, please feel free to contact us. Our professional technical engineers will solve your problems.

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