Even if you're someone who is using lip seals regularly inside an industrial facility, your knowledge of these parts may be lacking. Other than replacing them when they're worn, it's possible that you don't even think about them. However, it's important to understand that the more you know, the less time you'll spend replacing them. What should you be aware of regarding lip seals?

1-You Might Be Using the Wrong Ones

If it seems like the seals are just not working well at all, you may be irritated or concerned. Sometimes it's smart to take a step back and discover whether there is something wrong with the ones you're using. It's possible that no one ever checked manufacturer information for the seals being used; it's possible a purchasing mistake was made and never corrected. Your system's air pressure could be too high or the seals aren't made for temperatures that are common in your building. Review manufacturer data and directions to ensure that the seals are adequate for the work you have them doing.

2-Your Additives Could Be Ruining Them

Periodically you may be using additives to affect the fluids in your hydraulic systems. However, be aware that those additives also affect lip seals. If you've made adjustments to the brands, types or amounts of additives being used, that could be causing seal degradation. Therefore, double-check seal information to see if your additives mean that you need to seek new, different seals.

3-Clean Filters Are Important

Sometimes problems aren't directly seal-related. If you see metal bits or debris stuck in seals, it's likely due to a failure of other components in the system, probably filters. Torn filters will allow debris and particles to slip past, finally ending up in seals and other places throughout the system. Know how often filters are being cleaned or changed to see if that has any bearing on the condition of your seals.

4-Exterior Cleaning Must Be Done

Another smart choice regarding lip seals is to monitor them and to clean exterior surfaces when possible. Dirt, mud, ice and snow that sits on the seal surface can wear them down prematurely. Ensure someone is looking at--and cleaning--the seals frequently.

With more attention to lip seal maintenance and condition, you may notice that they begin lasting longer. Mention these issues to co-workers and others in your facility so that everyone can focus more on these seals as they monitor the health of the hydraulic systems there.