The increasing stringency of hydraulic system performance requirements means that more attention must be paid to all fluid properties. Unfortunately, there are some important properties that are often overlooked by designers. Compressibility, or bulk modulus, is one of these. Considering that bulk modulus is a property which can affect overall system performance, it is not a factor that should be ignored.
The role that density plays in the performance of hydraulic oil is key. Density is the measurement of a substance’s mass as it relates to a known volume. Water’s density has been measured at 62.4 pounds per cubic foot, but this number varies when the temperature of water changes. Where lubricants are concerned, they tend to be less dense than water, which is why water will tend to settle to the sump’s bottom and is the first thing to be drained from the lube system when a valve is opened or a plug pulled.
O-rings must be a strong contender for being the most useful and widely used component in industry. They are used in almost every engine, appliance, motor and hydraulic system. There are thousands of types of different O-rings, made from six principal materials and available in a wide range of sizes.
For manufacturers, having access to the right components when you need them is essential to running a productive operation. O-rings play an important part in most engines and hydraulic systems, and frequently need replacing, so it pays to have a consistent relationship with a supplier you can rely on.
Just how much fluid could be saved if hydraulic system leaks could be completely eliminated? The number is estimated to be in the hundreds of millions of gallons per year. Although this number may seem high at the outset, consider all of the components which use hydraulic fluid, such as sumps, pumping systems, gear cases and hydraulic machines. Approximately 80 percent of oil loss can be attributed to failure of O-rings, fittings, spills, hose breakage and general leakage.
Nitrile and Viton (Fluorocarbon rubber) are the most commonly used O-ring materials in industry. What are the differences between the two and what applications are they best suited for? Nitrile vs Viton is not an either/or consumer choice. Nitrile and Viton O-rings both have very different properties, varying in terms of tensile strength, temperature range, abrasion resistance etc. Making an informed choice of O-ring for your application involves understanding the differences between the two and how to select the most suitable component.
One of the most common concerns about oil is whether or not it’s possible to over-filter it. Some are of the opinion that maximum filtration is the best option, while others say that less is more. So which is the right answer? Increased life expectancy of equipment has been the result of using cleaner oils. However, there are also considerations which need to be made if the goal is to meet ISO cleanliness codes.
The O-ring material is an important factor when choosing the right component for your application. Industrial O-rings are commonly manufactured in 15 or so different materials. As each material has different characteristics, including varying temperature resistances, then each is better suited to a particular industry or purpose.
The degradation of oil is inevitable, regardless of the machine in which it is used. This is because, over a period of time, contaminants will enter the oil, causing damage to internal components, hydraulic seals, O-rings and the like. When lubricant degrades, an entire system and hydraulic pressure can be affected, leading to reduced reliability and performance of equipment.