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How Can You Reduce The Risk Of Failure In Hydraulic Cylinders?
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How Can You Reduce The Risk Of Failure In Hydraulic Cylinders?

posted in Hydraulic Components by Flowfit on 11:03 Jan 8th, 2015<< Back to Hydraulic Components

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Hydraulic cylinders are amongst, if not the, most popular product groups in the world of hydraulics. Chances are, if you’re operating a lot of hydraulic equipment, that cylinder repair is an expense that eats up a lot of your operational budget. If this is the case, then this blog will be of huge interest to you.

Lowering The Risk Of Failure In Your Hydraulic Cylinders

Certain studies have indicated that as much as 25% of mechanical equipment failures can be chalked up to failures of design. By applying this to hydraulic cylinders, you could be seeing 1 in 4 break or fail.

This doesn’t mean that they won’t work necessarily or do the job asked of them; but it could mean that their service life will be greatly affected. As such, there are number of aspects to check to ensure your cylinders are working as intended.

1. Bent Rods – There are a number of reasons why cylinder rods could bend. This could be due to insufficient rod diameter, weak material strength, an improper cylinder mounting arrangement or a combination of all three. Once the rod bends, deforming load is placed on the rod-seal. This can cause premature leakage which will result in the premature failure of the seal.

Euler’s Theorem comes into play here. This mathematical equation will determine the allowable rod loading for a hydraulic cylinder. Be sure to double check your measurements for the best results.

2. Rod Finish – The service life of a cylinder rod can also greatly affect its usability. If the surface roughness is too smooth, the resulting inadequate lubrication will reduce the seal’s life. Likewise, if the service area is too rough, containment ingression is increased which will result in an undesirable amount of leakage past the rod seal.

In many cases, the use of an alternative surface treatment with superior mechanical properties can alleviate these issues. Great examples are high velocity oxygen fuel metal spraying or nickel-chrome plating.

In some cases the installation of a shroud or bellows to protect the rod surface and its seals from impact damage and contaminants can afford similar life extension benefits.

3. Ballooned Tubes – A cylinder tube can balloon thanks to insufficient wall thickness or material strength for the cylinder’s operating pressure. Once it has been ballooned, the correct tolerance between the tube wall and the piston seal is lost. High velocity fluid can erode seals and localised heating caused by the pressure drop across the piston reduces seal life. The results of which are highly predictable: premature failure of the piston seal.

4. Insufficient Bearing - If the surface area of the bearing (wear) bands in the gland and on the piston are insufficient to adequately support the side thrust transferred to the cylinder, excessive load is placed on the rod and piston seals. This results in deformation of the seals and, ultimately, their premature failure.

It is highly advised that you double check all of the above when you purchase new hydraulic cylinders in order to get the most from your equipment.

Quality Hydraulic Cylinders Available Today From Flowfit

To ensure you’ve bought hydraulic cylinders that will last, make sure you visit our online store today. As a highly trusted supplier, with over 45,000 satisfied customers worldwide, you can be assured that your cylinders will have been manufactured to the very highest standards with Flowfit.

Should any faults occur with the cylinders you buy from us we’ll be more than happy to either repair them, replace them free of charge or give you a full, no hassle refund. Order your hydraulic cylinders from Flowfit today for complete peace of mind.

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