Polymer products and components may be stored for long periods of time before use. Therefore, it is important to store them in conditions that minimize degradation, such as excessive hardening, softening, cracking and other unwanted surface effects. The following tips will help prevent degradation during storage:
- Unless otherwise specified, to prevent dust, dirt, debris, oil, grease, etc. store rubber products in individually sealed envelopes; free from superimposed tensions, compressive stresses or other deformation.
- Package all rubber materials, except polyurethane, in an atmosphere with less than 70% relative humidity. Relative humidity for packaging of Polyurethane parts should be less than 65%.
- Where moisture ingress is an issue (e.g., rubber-metal bonded parts), protect parts with aluminum foil, paper, polyethylene laminate or other similar materials.
- Protect rubber from light sources, in particular direct sunlight or intense light with a high ultraviolet content. We recommend that you cover storage room windows with a red or orange coating or screen.
- Ozone is particularly harmful to rubber. Be sure storage rooms do not contain ozone-generating equipment, such as mercury vapor lamps or high-voltage equipment that could generate electric sparks or discharges.
- Protect stored products from all sources of ionizing radiation which is likely to cause damage to the products.
- Combustion gases and organic vapors can generate ozone via the photo-chemical process. Do not store these materials in the same room as rubber products.
- Gas, grease, acid, disinfectant, cleaning fluid and their vapors can cause degradation. Do not expose rubber sealing products to these materials unless they are an integral part of the product or the manufacturer’s packaging.
- Certain metals and their alloys (in particular, copper and manganese) have harmful effects on some rubbers. Do not store rubber in contact with such metals, except when bonded to them. Protect rubber parts from these materials by wrapping in or separating with a suitable material (e.g., paper or polyethylene).
- Avoid contact between products made from rubbers of different compositions. This includes products of the same type but different colors.
- Use dusting powders when packaging rubber items only to prevent adhesion. In such cases, use only the minimum amount of powder necessary to prevent adhesion. Be sure that the powder is free from any constituent that would have a harmful effect on the rubber or the subsequent application of the rubber.
- Ideally you should apply the FIFO principle, (First In- First Out), to keep inventory turning by age.
Maximize the life of your O-Ring:
- Use tools without sharp edges
- Ensure that the O-Ring is not twisted. Use installation aids, as needed, to assist correct positioning
- Do not over-stretch O-Rings
- Do not stretch O-Rings made out of cord at the joint
- Closure of the gland must not pinch the O-Ring at the groove corners
- Gland closures should be accomplished by straight longitudinal movement. Rotary or oscillatory motion is undesirable since it may cause bunching or cut the seal
Contact your Trelleborg representative with questions regarding O-Ring installation.