Everything you need to know about gaskets 10/29/15

Gaskets are little useful things that are often overlooked, but play an essential role and have numerous applications in almost all industries. A gasket is a compressible material used as a seal between two stationary members. Its role is to prevent leakages of the media across the members, therefore the material or combination of materials that make up gaskets needs to be resistant to the sealed medium and withstand high pressures. The most important feature of the material is its ability to act as a seal between two mating surfaces, but resistance to temperatures is also mandatory in certain situations. Depending on its use, certain features of an Ontario gasket will prevail over others. For instance, one will need to purchase a gasket resistant to heat, if the medium that needs to be sealed can reach high temperatures.

The selection process of a gasket

You can classify gaskets into three different categories: soft cut, semi-metallic and metallic. This is why the properties and performance of a gasket will vary greatly, depending on its type and materials used to create it. It is important to take into consideration the physical properties of a gasket before making a purchase, because it can influence its performance and durability considerably depending on the application you have in mind. In fact, this is the primary selection factor, so make sure you keep in mind the following things when choosing a gasket:

  • The temperature of the media that needs to be sealed
  • The pressure of the media that needs to be sealed
  • The corrosive nature of the media to be sealed
  • The criticality of the application to determine the strength of the gasket.

Depending on the above factors, you will need to choose a different type of gasket.

Types of gaskets

There are three main types of gaskets, soft cut gaskets composite gaskets and metallic gaskets, each with its own set of advantages and disadvantages. Soft cut gaskets are generally used as seals in medium and low pressure applications, but can handle chemical and temperature services. Composite gaskets are a combination of both metallic and non-metallic materials, which makes them strong and resilient, as well as conformable. Metallic gaskets are the only seals recommended for use in high pressure and temperature servicers. Generally, high loads are required in order to seat these gaskets.