Polytetrafluoroethylene is commonly known as PTFE. This is a fluoropolymer that has many industrial applications. There is also expanded PTFE that can be used as a sealing agent, gasket, or filler. It has many properties that support its variety of applications. The expanded PTFE is also known as ePTFE. There is a need to understand the differences between these materials.
PTFE is a solid material that can withstand temperatures up to 260 degrees Celsius. The material has excellent corrosion resistance and can last long. This material is used in various industries, such as food and petrochemicals. The fact that it does not corrode anything close to it makes it perfect for use in food industries.
On the other hand, ePTFE is produced from PTFE. The material is mainly used as a sealant. It is easy to modify to meet different requirements, such as stiffness and hardness. The material can stretch at high temperatures, and it has a smooth texture. Other interesting properties of this material include UV resistance, water-resistant, and divergent porosity. As a result, this material is used in the biological and medical industries.
The truth is that both ePTFE and PTFE have a range of industrial applications because of their features. However, ePTFE has a wide range of applications than PTFE. Since ePTFE has a fibrous structure, it can be used in high-pressure conditions. For safety purposes, the material can be customized to offer better performance. Moreover, it is highly in demand that it is produced in varying densities, dimensions, and heights.
Advantages of Using ePTFE Sheets and Gaskets
Experts recommend ePTFE gaskets because of numerous benefits. That is because gaskets made from this particular material offer unique advantages that are suitable for different applications. These are some of the reasons expandable PTFE is a great material.
Excellent Chemical Resistance
Chemical resistance is an important quality that offers it many applications. Its resistance to corrosion and chemicals makes it suitable for use in corrosive chemicals, such as acids and bases. In fact, there is hardly any chemical that can attack this material. This means the material can be used in a range of applications that involve chemical processing.
In industrial processing, it is vital to use a strong material that can withstand high temperatures. That explains why ePTFE is widely used in the food industry, metallurgy, and chemical processing. In such industries, there is a need to use materials that resist temperature changes.
Nowadays, there are different types of expanded PTFE gaskets to consider. Due to the different manufacturing techniques and compounds used, you can find materials with varying performance characteristics. This means you can get an ePTFE gasket that suits your performance requirements. Moreover, you can find these gaskets available in different thicknesses and compressed sheets. If you cannot get what you need, you can order a custom-made from different manufacturers.
In pharmaceutical or chemical industries, you should use a material with excellent corrosion resistance properties. That is because you have to deal with harsh acids and chemicals. For instance, since ePTFE is non-wetting, it is widely used in sealing and offering protection from leakages.
Thermal and Electrical Insulation
The good thing about an expanded PTFE is that it does not become heated even if it is used in processes that produce heat. This means it is used in different industrial processes where thermal insulation is required. For instance, if the process needs thermal insulation, this material can provide the insulation required.
Nowadays, you can get a custom ePTFE gasket for a range of industrial uses. You only need to give the manufacturer accurate specifications, and your gaskets are fabricated to suit your needs.
How to Choose the Right Gasket for Your Applications
There is a need to use the right gasket for your application to prevent failure. You should note that the gasket can fail if it is exposed to conditions that degrade the material. These are the crucial things to pay attention to when choosing a gasket.
Gaskets are available in a range of materials. You have to match the material to process requirements. For instance, PTFE gaskets are designed for use in corrosive conditions and processes. Metal gaskets are used in petroleum industrial systems.
There is a need to align the gasket to the purpose or application. This means you should take into account the pressure, materials, and temperature. The gasket’s material is suitable for a given temperature range. Therefore, you need to determine the operating temperatures of the system. Also, the chemical composition of the fluid should dictate the material of the gasket. Moreover, you should consider other factors, such as oxidation, water content, and pH level.
Type of Gasket
After matching the material to the application, you need to choose the appropriate type. The common varieties include solid gaskets, spiral wound gaskets, and jacketed gaskets. Jacketed gaskets are popular and feature a metallic coating and non-metallic interior. As a result, they have improved resistance to damage. The solid gaskets have excellent durability but need a higher compression force to form a seal.
It is advisable to test the performance of the gasket before using it. There are industry standards that parts ought to meet to be safe. The organizations also set the testing conditions to ensure the gasket is safe to use. Ideally, the tests are done to ensure the gasket can withstand the pressure, chemicals, and temperatures of the process.
You should ensure you find the right ePTFE gasket manufacturer. This is necessary to ensure you find a product that suits your needs. Consider the manufacturers with many years of experience in manufacturing gaskets for different markets and industries. Make sure you find a manufacturer with testing, design, and inspection capabilities. In this way, you can ensure the product you choose is reliable and of high quality.
Before you choose an expanded PTFE gasket, ensure it has been tested. In this way, you can be sure it can meet the required parameters for your applications. Sealibility, compression, and temperature are important tests that must be carried out. Also, you need to check the material’s ability to withstand chemical degradation.