Polytetrafluoroethylene, or PTFE, is a versatile material that is dense, hydrophobic, and resistant to damage from high temperatures. These characteristics make PTFE an ideal material for commercial and industrial O-rings. At MSP Seals, we offer PTFE seals made from a combination of virgin PTFE material and various fillers to enhance or add the desired physical characteristics.
One of our more popular services is supplying O-rings made from PTFE and specialty PTFE compounds are cost-effective, reliable sealing solutions that are easy to install and built to last for years of continuous sealing.
What Are PTFE O-Rings?
O-rings are simple, circular gaskets made from a layer of hydrophobic material that can be compressed. They seal gaps and openings to prevent the escape or the introduction of liquid in closed container systems. For example, an O-ring placed between a fastener and an attached surface or component will fill any uneven spaces or gaps between the two components for leak-proof performance.
Most O-rings are made from elastomeric materials and rubbers, but PTFE is a better choice for extreme environmental conditions, such as high-heat applications or very cold environments. PTFE is a versatile plastic polymer with a high molecular weight, which makes it very dense and durable. PTFE retains its plasticity and longevity in both near-zero temperatures and temperatures up to 250°C. Manufacturers can easily fabricate and cut PTFE O-rings to meet precise dimensions and specifications.
Advantages of PTFE O-Rings
PTFE possesses several material properties that make it a good fit for O-ring production. Some of the key advantages of PTFE for O-rings include:
PTFE is resistant to oxidation and chemical corrosion. It can continuously be exposed to a wide range of chemical compounds and fluids without degrading or losing its plasticity. This is especially advantageous for applications where corrosive fluids will be caught in the edges and crevices between the O-ring and the tangential surfaces.
Long Shelf Life
PTFE O-rings are extremely durable, even in the presence of caustic and corrosive fluids. Due to their resistant characteristics, PTFE O-rings can last for years between replacements.
Wide Temperature Range
PTFE offers an even wider functional temperature range in comparison to most elastomers and rubber compounds. It’s safe to use in temperatures ranging from -325°F to above 500°F. Under this vass range of temperatures, PTFE won’t harden, contract, or lose its plasticity in low-temperature applications. Neither will it melt or lose shape in high-temperature applications.
The material is hydrophobic, or water-repelling, so it won’t absorb liquid and swell over time.
Virgin PTFE without additives or fillers is rated for FDA compliance, making it a good fit for machinery used in the production of food and other consumable goods.
Other benefits of PTFE O-rings include resistance to UV radiation damage and excellent electrical resistance.
PTFE O-Ring Applications
Some of the most common applications of PTFE O-rings include:
- Valve Stems
PTFE O-rings can be used in high-pressure environments and won’t wear when it’s exposed to a high flow rate of fluid. Commercial and industrial systems benefit from PTFE O-rings in any processing or piping system with temperature extremes and caustic or corrosive fluids.
Order Your PTFE O-Rings From MSP Seals
At MSP Seals, we offer standard and custom O-rings made from a range of sizes and materials, including PTFE. Whether you require a single piece or high-volume production, we can meet your needs with quality O-ring solutions. To learn more about our capabilities, or to get started on your PTFE O-ring solution, contact us today.