Rubber Gaskets and Seals

Published: 20th January 2012
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From small domestic uses to large applications in the construction industry and elsewhere, rubber gaskets and seals are massively useful and important. Rubber seals can be used for a wide range of purposes and there are many different types available. This includes high temperature rubber gaskets for processes where heat is an issue, to small rubber gaskets used for household purposes.

But for those not already in the know, what is the purpose of rubber gaskets? Essentially, the purpose of rubber seals and gaskets is to seal off a particular surface from another substance, often a liquid but solids can also be dealt with. For example, the lids of jars often have a rubber gasket in them to seal the jar and prevent the contents from spilling out.

Another good small use for rubber gaskets is for hosepipes, where a gasket is used to seal one end of the hosepipe to another in such a way that it does not leak water when it is switched on. The taps on your bathroom sink are also likely to use a rubber gasket to keep them sealed. All rubber gaskets work by this principle, no matter whether they are used in the domestic arena or for larger purposes.

One reason rubber gaskets are so often used is that rubber is really versatile. It can be bent and cut into all different shapes and sizes, meaning it can be used for lots of different applications. This is why you often find rubber seals in industries as diverse as engineering, domestic appliances, construction and automotive markets. The fact that high temperature rubber is also available means that it can be used in more applications than ever before.

There are also quite a few other different types of rubber available. These types include silicone, fluorocarbon, neoprene and nitrile. This variety means that there are rubber gaskets that can withstand use in chemical processes as well as high temperatures.

As well as lots of different types of rubber gaskets and seals, it is also possible to find a wide range of foam gaskets. Foam is another popular material for gaskets as it is also easy to manipulate and so can be created in a range of shapes and sizes, depending on the purpose it is going to be used for. Often, foam gaskets are made out of materials such as neoprene, meaning that they are closely linked to rubber gaskets. However, they are different as foam gaskets are a blown variant, which makes them lighter and easier to compress.

Due to their different properties, foam gaskets are often used to seal against water and air. Depending on what they are going to be used for, they can be applied using self-adhesive backing.

From the above explanations, it is possible to see that rubber gaskets and foam gaskets have a wide range of uses and play an important role in both domestic and industrial processes. Getting the right gasket for your needs will ensure that your product is sufficiently sealed and kept safe, keeping it in good condition for as long as possible.


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There is more to rubber than meets the eye, there being so many different types, each one being specially useful in their area of application. Graham Baylis has been working with Alanto to ensure that the rubber seals and sheeting they make are made known to a wider audience. See their site for information on the types of rubber they supply. See http://www.alanto.co.uk

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