Here’s How Mechanical Seal Failure Affects the Pump Shaft

Mechanical seal parts are used in many industries such as metals and mining, petrochemical, food and beverage, and oil and gas. Seals are a crucial part of a process pump, and they have a direct link to the operation of the machine. It is vital to have quality engineered industrial parts as they contribute to the performance of a pump.

An example of such machinery is a centrifugal pump. Mechanical seals are installed at both ends of the machine. Their primary job is to ensure adequate fluid sealing solutions and absorb pressure. Without proper mechanical sealing solutions, leakages and dirt can find a way through to the pump, resulting in the machine’s breakdown and the potential need for mechanical seal repair services.

A mechanical seal failure can have disastrous implications on many parts of a pump which includes the shaft. It is essential to know the effects and how to mitigate them.

Indentation On The Shaft

As mechanical seals break down, they leave a lasting effect on the sleeve of the shaft. A rut develops on the shaft as the seal spins on it. Once the indentation occurs, the whole shaft has to be replaced—it can’t be reused it.

Scratches On The Shaft

If the mechanical seal crumbles into pieces, it can have a disastrous effect on the shaft. Tungsten from the crumbs can scratch the sleeve. Moreover, if you replace the seal on the scratched shaft, it will damage the o-ring on the new part. Therefore, the whole pump shaft will need to be replaced.

Corrosion On The Shaft

Not having a regular maintenance plan or overlooking small leakages can corrode the shaft. Gradual corrosion can weaken the shaft make it susceptible to breakdowns. Therefore, it is necessary to have a maintenance plan which provides a regular mechanical sealing solution. An effective fluid sealing solution can increase the longevity of the pump.

picture showing a corroded old gear

Fretting On The Shaft

Excessive vibrations or movement of the mechanical seal can create fretting on the pump. Damaged faces, mechanical seal parts, and inappropriate installation are the significant causes of fretting.  

It is advisable to replace the entire pump shaft if the mechanical seal has damaged it. If you choose to overlook it and continue with the broken part, it can result in disastrous consequences increasing the repair cost.

If you are unsure about repairing the pump shaft or require engineered sealing solutions, contact Robco of America at 1-800-662-0585 or email us at We provide mechanical seal repair services and custom engineering with technical and onsite support. Our products are 100% manufactured, assembled, and tested in America.  

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