What types of seals are used in the marine industry?

Onshore and offshore, the marine industry works within vast and challenging environments, relying heavily on precision engineering to ensure the safety, efficiency, and longevity of its equipment.

Seals are used effectively in maintaining the integrity of various marine applications to prevent leaks and protect operating systems for optimal performance.

Types of seals used in the marine industry:

Mechanical Seals:  Used to prevent fluid leakage ensuring that oil, water, or chemicals don't infiltrate the machinery and cause damage to internal components, commonly found in pumps and propeller shafts, where maintaining a watertight seal is critical.

Gaskets:  Commonly used in flanged joints, providing a reliable barrier against fluids and gases. Gaskets come in various materials including rubber, cork, and metal, depending on the required properties for the application. In marine engines and boilers, gaskets are utilised to prevent the escape of steam and other fluids, contributing to the overall safety and efficiency of the equipment.

O-Rings:  Commonly used in the marine industry due to their versatility and reliability. These circular elastomeric seals create a secure barrier against fluid or gas leakage in applications. O-rings are typically placed in grooves or recesses and are compressed between two mating surfaces.

Hydraulic Seals: Designed specifically for use in hydraulic systems. These seals are vital in marine applications, particularly in hydraulic cylinders used for steering systems, hatch covers, and other moving parts, maintaining the stability and flexibility of the application.

Oil Seals:  Also known as shaft seals, designed to prevent the leakage of lubricating oil from rotary shafts. These seals are commonly used in engines, gearboxes, and propulsion systems where rotating shafts are prevalent. Oil seals help in extending the life of machinery by preventing the loss of essential lubricants.

Washers:  Thin, flat rings used to distribute loads and prevent leakage between connected components. Washers are employed in various applications, such as flanged connections, valves, and pumps. They help distribute the load evenly and create a reliable seal, contributing to the overall integrity of the application. Available in different materials, including rubber, metal, and fibre, depending on the specific requirements of the application.

Retaining Rings: Also known as circlips or snap rings, are used to secure components on shafts or in bores. In marine applications, retaining rings are utilised in propeller shafts, bearings, and other rotating components to prevent axial movement and ensure the stability of essential parts. 

Back-Up Rings: Are used in conjunction with O-rings and other seals to provide additional support and prevent extrusion under high pressures. In the marine industry, where hydraulic and pneumatic systems operate under challenging conditions, back-up rings are employed to enhance the durability and performance of seals.

FPE Seals stocks and manufactures a full range of sealing solutions and hydraulic cylinder products that best serve operations related to the offshore and onshore business of ships, boats, yachts, subsea equipment, maritime infrastructure, and technology, whether that be for naval, commercial or leisure.

Order online today or get in touch with our knowledgeable team here at FPE Seals, who will discuss your requirements based on your application, and help you find the right seal for the job.



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