Silicone O Rings – Versatile Seals for a Variety of Industries

Silicone O Rings – Versatile Seals for a Variety of Industries

Engineered Seal Products has a large inventory of silicone (VMQ) o rings. They are a popular choice in many industries such as aerospace, automotive, medical and more.

VMQ is resistant to ozone, oxygen and UV radiation and offers good abrasion resistance and flexibility. It is not recommended for dynamic applications due to its low tensile and tear strength.

Temperature Resilience

The temperature resilience of silicone o rings is what makes them a versatile choice for so many applications. They can be used in medical and pharmaceutical systems because they’re non-toxic, hypoallergenic and don’t interact with bodily fluids or tissues. These qualities make them perfect for drug-delivery devices like insulin pumps that need to maintain a constant, reliable seal.

Fluctuating temperatures can cause physical and chemical deterioration of o-ring elastomers, making the proper material selection essential. Some O-rings, such as those made of neoprene (polychloroprene), are better at handling high heat. This material also resists degradation from UV radiation and atmospheric agents.

Other O-ring materials, such as nitrile and FKM (fluoroelastomer) have excellent low temperature performance. Nitrile can withstand low temperatures up to -76 degrees Fahrenheit, and it has good resistance to petroleum-based oils and fuels. Similarly, FKM has exceptional high-temperature stability and can be used in environments that involve explosive gases.

Chemical Resistance

Silicone O rings are great for extreme temperature sealing applications. They are very flexible, have good fatigue and stress resistance and provide excellent ozone and UV radiation resistance. They are also physiologically neutral, antifungal and non-corrosive. These characteristics, along with their insulating properties make silicone O-rings an ideal choice for drinking taps, electrical fittings, motor shaft piping, enclosures and light fixture flange gaskets.

Nitrile (Buna N) is an outstanding O-ring material for chemical resistance. It is resistant to diluted salt solutions, animal and vegetable oils, brake fluid, mineral and petroleum fuels and many chemicals including acids, alkalis and some diluted hydrocarbons. However, it should not be exposed to ketones, esters or chlorinated hydrocarbons.

Fluorosilicone O-rings are becoming increasingly popular. They are highly stable in both low and high temperatures but have limited fuel and oil resistance like silicone. They have great ozone and UV resistance and are antifungal and antistatic. However, they have very low tensile strength and abrasion resistance so they are only suitable for static applications.


O-rings are critical components for equipment in motion and must be able to withstand harsh conditions. Silicone o-rings are very flexible and resist scratches and abrasions that may damage other elastomeric seals. They also resist degradation from environmental conditions such as Silicone o rings frost, rain and UV rays. The flexibility of silicone o-rings makes them easy to install and maintain.

Silicone is a class of synthetic polymers that are made of oxygen, hydrogen and carbon. These organic groups are added to silicon atoms via C-Si bonds. This unique chemistry gives silicone o-rings exceptional resistance to weathering, ozone and UV radiation. This bio-inert nature of silicone also makes it highly suitable for medical applications, where o-rings are frequently in contact with edible foodstuffs.

Fluorosilicones extend the upper temperature range of silicone to 260 degC while retaining the low temperature properties. They are excellent in dry heat, ozone and corona resistance while having good dielectric stability and chemical resistance to petroleum fluids, ketones, steam and water. However, they have low tensile strength and poor abrasion resistance. For these reasons, they are not recommended for dynamic applications.


A silicone o ring’s flexibility makes it an excellent choice for a number of dynamic applications. The material can easily accommodate shear forces without bending or cracking. This flexibility also makes it a popular choice for use with hoses, tubing, and electrical wire.

It can withstand temperatures as high as 225 degrees Celsius and as low as -60 degrees Celsius. It can also withstand thermal cycling, which involves repeatedly exposing the o-ring to extreme temperatures. This testing helps to capture or recognise manufacturing defects.

Silicone o rings are also extremely flexible and can be easily molded into complex designs, making them ideal for delicate or fragile applications. They are also very supple, which means they have good resilience against stress cracking.

They are highly resistant to a wide range of chemicals, including oxygen, ozone, UV radiation and diluted salt solutions. However, they are not a suitable choice for applications that will be exposed Silicone o rings to petroleum fluids, engine and transmission oils, ketones or benzene. They also do not have the best abrasion or tensile strength, which can make them unsuitable for dynamic applications.


O-rings are small, yet critical components in a variety of industries and outdoor applications. As such, they must withstand extreme temperature changes, environmental conditions and chemical interactions. Choosing the right o-ring material is essential to ensure optimal performance and longevity.

Silicone o rings are a popular choice because they can tolerate high temperatures and resist the effects of harsh chemicals and environments. They also provide excellent electrical insulating properties, as well as being odorless and non-toxic.

The o-ring market is experiencing steady growth as it adapts to new demands from diverse industries. From electronics and automotive to medical applications, the versatility of silicone o-rings is fueling their continued use.

O-rings are manufactured with elastic polymers known as elastomers, which are cured through a process called vulcanization to improve elasticity and tensile strength. The material is then molded into the desired shape, and the o-ring is ready to be used. There are several different o-ring materials available to suit the requirements of your application, including nitrile (NBR), silicone (VMQ) and fluorosilicone. Each offers a wide range of properties, but some are better suited for specific scenarios than others.

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