The job of a mechanical seal is to make sure pumps don’t leak; otherwise, the entire machine will be damaged. A mechanical seal is the lifeline of a machine containing fluid within the machines, like mixers and pumps, where a stationary housing sees a rotating shaft passing through it.
If there’s one cause of pump downtime, it’s a mechanical seal failure. Since a seal can be exposed to a range of operating conditions, issues may occur later in its life. Sometimes, operating conditions may change to something the seal wasn’t initially designed for.
However, even if your seal is exactly what the job requires, it may fail faster than you think. This is especially true in plants performing a variety of functions.
Here are five reasons why a mechanical seal fails.
1. No mechanical seal flush plan in place
If there’s no coordinating flush plan in place, your mechanical seal recommendation is incomplete. Remember, in case of no plan, contaminants and dewatered products may build up, exposing the seal to erosion and excessive heat. This may shorten the seal’s life.
2. Pounding couplings onto the shaft
Hammers are the pumps’ greatest enemy. The faces of mechanical seal can be quite fragile. By hammering couplings onto the shaft, the mechanical seal will receive substantial damage.
Cavitation, misalignment, and improper installation are all factors that can cause excessive vibration in the pump. While mechanical seals don’t contribute to vibration, they’ll be exposed to a lot of wear and tear when the pump vibrates more than it should.
4. Allowing the pump to run dry
Nothing can damage your mechanical seal more than allowing your pump to run dry. Under certain conditions, mechanical seals can shatter within half a minute after experiencing a thermal shock.
5. Not using the right seal
Never use a wrong seal for a particular application. Before choosing a seal, always familiarize yourself with the fluid’s chemical aspects, fluid viscosity, temperature, and pump specifications. Sometimes, even the most experienced engineers may overlook important considerations. Try contacting a pump specialist and get them to review the application before they recommend a seal.
Robco of America’s mechanical seal repair service is positioned to solve your challenges
Our technicians have extensive machining experience and knowledge. These skills allow our team to process to offer mechanical sealing solutions efficiently and quickly. This helps us get your equipment back into operation with almost no interruption.
Call us now for more information on our custom design mechanical seals—we take the time to understand the specific requirements of your job to offer the right materials for your individual application!