Mechanical seals play a vital role in the industrial world. It is necessary to understand why they degrade and when it is time to repair or replace them, so you can avoid any equipment malfunctions or downtime.
What is a Mechanical Seal?
Mechanical seals are essential to prevent leaks from occurring in pumps and equipment. Mechanical seals are used on rotating equipment like mixers and pumps, where the gas or liquid inside needs to be kept from escaping into the environment.
There are several different types of mechanical seals: conventional, balanced, unbalanced, cartridge, pusher, and non-pusher, to name a few. Mechanical seal designs can range from single springs to complex cartridge seals.
Regardless of the type of seal, they all generally work the same way. There are two mating faces, and these connect to form a seal. One surface is made from a soft material like carbon, while the other face uses hard materials such as silicon carbide.
One of these components is stationary, and the other rotates against it to create the seal!
The pressure, speed of rotation, and temperature of what is within the pump will ultimately determine the arrangement and design, as well as which specific materials are used to construct it.
A properly working mechanical seal is necessary to ensure that your pumps and other machinery are operating as they should.
When is it Time to Replace or Repair Them?
Pump repair and equipment maintenance are regular aspects of operating machinery. No matter how well you take care of your mechanical seals, they will degrade over time and will eventually need to be repaired or replaced.
This degradation can be due to normal wear and tear, worn sliding surfaces, bearing failures, or even dry running the pumps.
Even if the seal appears to be in good working order to the naked eye, it may be damaged and require repair. Some obvious damage can include broken sleeves or extremely eroded glands – problems that could potentially halt production if not addressed promptly.
Here are a few ways you can tell that it is time to repair or replace your mechanical seal.
Conduct a Visual Inspection
Although it can be quite difficult to tell if a mechanical seal needs repairs without taking apart the pump, you may be able to determine if there is some wear or minor leaks around the seal by inspecting it. If you see suction or discharge piping, that may be evidence of overheating – which means it is likely that the mechanical seal needs to be repaired or replaced.
Your Pump is Malfunctioning
There may be a few reasons why your pump is malfunctioning, but if it is not building up the correct pressure or it loses prime, it could indicate a leaking mechanical seal. In this case, the air is being pulled by a leaking seal which results in the pump losing prime. If this is happening, you might need to repair your mechanical seal.
There is a Spraying Leak
The most obvious indicator that the mechanical seal on your equipment needs to be repaired or replaced is a spraying leak. If water is spraying by the shaft seal, there is definitely a need to have the mechanical seal checked out.
Hire a Professional
The only way to know if a seal needs repairs when there are no obvious issues is to have a trained mechanical seal repair expert evaluate it.
You don’t want to wait to fix it until it is too late to be repaired. Minimize downtime by having Industrial Pump Repair Canada be your on-call expert for all things pump & seal related.
The Repair Process
So, consider you have a mechanical seal that is damaged and needs to be repaired but does not have to be replaced. What does that process look like?
The answer to that depends on the type of mechanical seal in question, and how bad the wear and tear is.
At Industrial Pump and Repair Canada, our goal is to service industrial and commercial pumps, boosters, and blowers – and all of the mechanical seals that come with them.
We have in-house capabilities for repairing almost any type of mechanical seal and machining their parts. This also includes carbon face manufacturing and lapping! This means that we can repair any brand of mechanical seal for pumps, compressors, mixers, and agitators – regardless of the manufacturer.
Our experts have years of experience in the field and provide the highest quality of mechanical seal repair in the Hamilton and Toronto area – as well as Ontario and the Northern States.
We provide repairs with a fast turnaround, and we stand behind our work. Our excellent customer service ensures we meet all of your seal repair needs and make sure that the job remains within the budget!