In the industrial sector, sealing hardware plays a critical role in ensuring components are securely fastened within a system and preventing contaminants—such as liquids and gases—from moving through the sealed area. Depending on the type of hardware—e.g., screws, nuts, bolts, and washers—and design employed, industry professionals can also take advantage of additional functions and features.
The following blog post provides an overview of some of the benefits of using sealing hardware, as well as outlines the types of sealing hardware available at APM Hexseal.
Benefits of Using Sealing Hardware
When exposed to variable internal and external pressures and high vibration levels, fasteners in fluid systems can experience improper or inadequate sealing that leads to the leakage of process fluid and loss of pressure. These effects, in turn, affect the integrity and efficiency of the process and the performance and stability of the system—ultimately leading to lower productivity, greater downtime, and larger investments into maintenance and repair operations.
For situations where regular fasteners are unable to prevent the unintentional flow of fluids, sealing hardware serves as an excellent solution. The specialized fasteners are designed to contain and prevent contaminants, such as air, dust, water, and lubricants, from leaking out of or into sealed areas of a system. In addition to this primary purpose, specific types of sealing hardware may also perform other functions. For example:
Sealing screws and bolts, such as Seelskrews® and Seelbolts®, can be designed to perform in environments regularly exposed to high levels of vibrations and impact
Sealing nuts, such as Seelnuts®, can feature designs capable of withstanding significant internal and external pressures
Sealing washers, such as Seeloc® washers, are available in heavy-duty variations that endure higher torque values without experiencing excessive damage or wear
Regardless of the type of sealing hardware employed, ensuring it performs its critical function necessitates choosing the right solution for the system. Proper selection entails considering several factors regarding the particular system—such as process fluids and operating pressures and temperatures—and sourcing quality products from a reputable supplier. Fortunately, APM Hexseal offers several sealing solutions suitable for use in a wide range of operating conditions.
Sealing Hardware From APM Hexseal
At APM Hexseal, we understand that our customers often need more than a fastener for their industrial equipment. In addition to holding system components together, they require a solution that prevents process fluids—whether in gaseous or liquid form—from leaking in or out. As the first designer and manufacturer of self-sealing fasteners, we offer a number of patented solutions, including:
Seelskrews and Seelbolts. Our proprietary hardware is specially designed to withstand high vibrations and repeated impact—serving as reliable seals against liquids and gases—including in applications that involve constant vigorous motion.
Seelnuts. These hardware components are particularly useful for equipment exposed to exceptional internal or external pressures, such as hydraulic and pneumatic systems. They feature threads molded directly into the rubber of the interior surface, a design that allows them to form a positive seal between the threaded section and the contact surface. Their exceptional sealing ability eliminates the need for gaskets, sealing compounds, or other sealing components, thereby reducing the overall cost of hardware for the system. In addition, their superior performance saves both time and money on repairs and downtime. These qualities result in more reliable and cost-effective equipment. They are compatible with conventional fasteners like screws, bolts, and studs.
Seeloc® Washers. Our self-sealing stainless steel washers are bonded on one side with silicone rubber, enabling them to endure pressures up to 100psi.
Heavy-duty Seeloc washers. Our new line of heavy-duty washers withstands torque values at least 50% greater than our original Seeloc Washers. Wear and pressure resistance at this level reduce the need for frequent maintenance and repairs on high-powered equipment.
APM Hexseal’s UL Certification
Underwriters Laboratories (UL) is an internationally recognized safety consulting and certification organization approved by the United States Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) to perform safety testing, inspections, and audits of new technology. By achieving and maintain UL certification, we aim to meet higher safety, security, and sustainability standards when developing our innovative sealing products. As many of our patented solutions are UL recognized, they are certified to be compliant with some of the most stringent industry requirements.
For additional information about sealing hardware or assistance with a specific project,ask the experts at APM Hexseal.
Every month, Thomas—a major partner for a wide range of industrial stakeholders around the world—awards the NextGen for Industry Award to recognize an up-and-coming leader in the industrial sector. In November, that honor goes to Susanna Morse, APM Hexseal’s own Director of Engineering and Technology!
The NextGen for Industry Award
The next generation of leaders is taking the industrial sector to the next level with fresh ideas and a bold approach to modern challenges. These innovators are responsible for driving company and industry successes, and it’s important to honor their impact and influence. With that in mind, Thomas created the NextGen for Industry Award to recognize the industry’s most promising talent.
Every month, Thomas gives the award to a young professional who is leading his or her company into the future. These leaders are nominated by their peers or managers with consideration to their innovations, thought leadership, contributions to the team, and their specialized area of business.
November’s recipient of the NextGen for Industry Award is Susanna Morse, the Director of Engineering and Technology at APM Hexseal, a third-generation family owned business. Although she’s leading the company forward, it wasn’t her original career path.
Instead, her parents approached her after they were both diagnosed with cancer. They told her they’d probably have to sell the business—which was started by Susanna’s grandparents—unless she wanted to get involved. She made the decision to leave the fitness studio she had been running for eight years and join APM Hexseal—which she did with a 100% commitment.
That’s not to say it has been an easy journey. Many of the employees had been with APM Hexseal for a long time and they were happy with the way things were. As Susanna says, “Change is hard. People get so comfortable with what they’re accustomed to that sometimes you walk in and wonder how they haven’t realized there are newer, more effective ways to accomplish their goals.”
With Susanna’s vision, leadership, and collaborative nature, she’s been able to create the necessary changes within the company to prepare us for continued growth.
Positive Change at APM Hexseal
Susanna joined a multi-generational team at APM Hexseal, complete with a variety of opinions and levels of comfort regarding how the business operated. By creating an environment of innovation and collaboration, she made the changes she saw necessary if APM Hexseal was to continue to be a successful player in the sealing industry. Instead of trying to do everything at once, she made small, incremental changes—one or two at a time—as her team began to see her vision and trust her leadership.
From the beginning, she focused on diversifying the company—a focus that goes back to her grandmother, Riva Morse, who co-founded the company with Susanna’s grandfather, Milton. Riva was the original leader of the sales department at APM Hexseal, a role that was not typically held by a woman in this industry at that time.
That spirit of diversity and a willingness to do things differently were built into the company’s foundation, and Morse is proudly continuing that tradition. In a traditionally male-dominated manufacturing industry, she has encouraged female employees to take on key responsibilities in the organization.
Susanna has also worked to update the company’s technology and bring on younger employees as she fosters collaboration between generations and levels of management. She’s carefully balancing the company’s roots while challenging industry norms and staying competitive in today’s ever-changing market, while pursuing APM Hexseals primary objective – Ever Better.
It’s no simple task, but it’s a recipe for success that APM Hexseal can rely on. Congratulations to Susanna on receiving this well-deserved recognition!
To learn more about sealing solutions, ask the experts at APM Hexseal for more information.
Cold heading is a manufacturing method that employs cold forming techniques to produce standard and custom fasteners and components quickly and efficiently. Parts and products produced through this method are referred to as “cold headed”.
The cold heading process involves the use of a cold heading machine that contains a series of specialized hammers and dies. Pre-cut wire—also known as a slug—is inserted into the machine, where the hammers and dies form it into the desired part shape. As the name suggests, no heat is required for cold heading operations, and all of the part shaping can be done on cold metal.
Some of the key characteristics of the cold heading process include:
Little to no material waste.The initial slug is cut to approximately the same volume as the end product, and the forming process is performed by a die rather than by cutting the raw material into the desired shape and form. These process qualities allow virtually all of the raw material to consumed in the shaping process.
Versatility. Cold heading can be used to produce a variety of parts and products, ranging from small fasteners (such as screws, shoulders, lugs, and washers) to larger metal components.
Reduced production cost. The cold heading process is much more cost effective than the machining process, making it an attractive economic solution.
Solutions for Enhanced Performance
Compared to fasteners formed through other manufacturing methods, cold headed fasteners offer superior performance. This characteristic stems largely from the rearrangement of the raw material’s grain structure that occurs during the cold heading process. This alteration of the material results in end products that demonstrate greater durability and tensile strength.
Sealing hardware that is produced through cold heading methods also exhibit enhanced sealing capabilities. At APM Hexseal, our sealing screws are cold headed to ensure they protect sensitive equipment from external contaminants.
Advantages of Using Cold Headed Fasteners
Using the cold heading process to form fasteners offers a number of advantages, including:
Less material waste. As discussed previously, cold heading produces little to no material waste. In practice, this translates to significant material savings ranging from up to 60–70%.
Greater tensile strength. Due in part to optimized grain flow, cold headed components typically offer a higher degree of tensile strength than parts produced through other manufacturing methods. This process quality allows for the manufacture of more durable and reliable parts and products.
Better production efficiency. Cold heading allows for faster production speeds, making it suitable for high volume production runs. Additionally, the process enables manufacturers to consolidate multi-part assemblies into single-part units, which can result in significant material, labor, and production savings.
Broader design versatility. Cold heading accommodates designs of all shapes, sizes, and complexities. Depending on the dies used, even highly complex geometries can be produced to extremely tight tolerances.
Learn More From the Experts at APM Hexseal
At APM Hexseal, we design and manufacture a wide range of sealing fasteners and hardware. Like all cold headed parts, our sealing screws are strong, durable, and cost-effective.
For over 70 years, APM Hexseal Corp. has been an industry leader in the development and manufacture of sealing solutions capable of prolonging the service life of critical components—such as circuit breakers and switches—in extreme operational and environmental conditions. With seven decades of experience under our belt, we have unparalleled ability and knowledge in protecting vital components. In the field of sealing solutions, we lead the pack as the innovator, not just another imitator.
APM Hexseal’s History as an Innovator
During WWII, the U.S. military needed a way to protect vital components of electrical equipment in harsh battlefield conditions. Milton Morse, a self-taught engineer, responded with an ingenious solution. He invented a molded covering to protect the switch and the mounting panel from environmental assaults. This component was the original sealing boot and it was a huge success.
In 1947, Milton Morse and his wife Riva Solins Morse founded APM Hexseal. Their shared mission was to develop and manufacture sealing solutions that would protect circuit breakers and electromechanical switches from environmental damage, prolonging their service lives. Although APM Hexseal originally manufactured these sealing solutions for military use, in time many other industries came to value the protection they provide.
Of Milton Morse’s many inventions, one of the most commercially successful are his environmental sealing boots for electrical components. This innovative device has produced the majority of his company’s profits. Up til now, more than 50 million boots have been manufactured by APM Hexseal and sold to more than 200,000 customers worldwide.
Sealing boots are an inexpensive way to protect electrical and electronic switches from damage caused by many different hazardous substances such as water, dust, salt spray, oil, grease, solvents, lubricants and many others. The sealing boots also defend against the elements and other environmental conditions, including snow, wind, sun exposure, and pressure fluctuations from altitude changes.
The versatility of sealing boots lends the product to use in numerous industries. They have been employed in defense applications, such as aircraft carriers, submarines, Apollo space vehicles, Polaris missiles, and Patriot missile launch controls. Some of the product’s other industrial and commercial applications include use in aircraft, machine tools, pressure washers, waste treatment equipment, chemical processing equipment, and underwater lighting.
Milton Morse’s career spanned 50 years. He engineered technical solutions that have fueled development in a wide range of commercial, industrial, and military products and systems. His dedication to innovation is demonstrated by the 65 U.S. patents and 39 foreign patents he holds, including awards in Belgium, Canada, France, Great Britain, Italy, Japan, Spain, and Switzerland.
Milton Morse was still active well into his 80’s. He was even issued a patent as recently as January of 1995. In 1997, to commemorate his technological achievements, he was inducted into the New Jersey Inventors Hall of Fame. Riva remained active into her 90’s and would still visit the office frequently until she passed in 2018, at the age of 100. Today, APM Hexseal remains a Morse Family owned business and proudly carries on Milton and Riva’s visions and legacies.
APM Hexseal’s Commitment to Quality
At APM Hexseal, we develop and manufacture a wide range of environmental sealing boots that cover and protect vital components such as potentiometers, circuit breakers, and various types of switches.
We also produce a line of sealing hardware and fasteners that are reusable and suitable for high-pressure applications. This product line includes self-sealing nuts, self-sealing screws, self-sealing rivets, self-sealing bolts, and sealing washers. All of these products are designed to seal potentially damaging elements both in and out of vulnerable electronic and mechanical systems. As proof of our commitment to developing and manufacturing quality products, the majority of the products we manufacture are designed to meet IP66/68 ingress protection ratings. Additionally, they are UL recognized as meeting all applicable Canadian and USA enclosure protection standards.
Contact APM Hexseal Today
At APM Hexseal, we are proud of our long history of innovation and unwavering commitment to delivering high-quality solutions. We carry a comprehensive inventory of sealing hardware and silicone switch covers, including reusable, self-sealing fasteners and sealing washers.
For more information on the different elastomers we use for our products, download our eBook, “Elastomer, Shlastomer, Right?”. For assistance finding a sealing solution suitable for your unique application, Ask The Experts at APM Hexseal today.
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Different elastomer formulations affect your parts’ physical properties, functions, and service life. Therefore, it’s important to test a few different elastomers, when assembling your product, to determine the best one for your needs.
Our eBook, “Elastomer Shlastomer, Right?” explores different types of elastomers that APM Hexseal uses, as well as some of their most common applications. Some of these types include:
Fill out the form to access your copy of the eBook, “Elastomer Shlastomer, Right?”
How to Select the Right Elastomer for Your Sealing Boots and Fasteners
Elastomers are the key to providing effective sealing solutions for applications in outdoor, marine, medical and any environment where sealing stuff in or sealing stuff out is imperative. Elastomers are versatile materials typically composed of polymers, and manufacturers prize them for their ability to bend and stretch in a variety of ways before returning to their original shape.
However, not all elastomers are the same. Elastomers can incorporate a wide range of designs and materials depending on the needs of their intended application. More than 20 different types of standard elastomers exist, and each possesses unique functions in both process equipment and finished products.
Different elastomer formulations affect the physical properties, functions, and service life of your components and systems. This is why it’s essential to test a few different elastomers to determine the best one for your needs. In this post, we outline ways to evaluate elastomers for their capacity to perform well in your application, and we also describe some of the best uses of each different type of elastomer.
Questions to Ask When Selecting an Elastomer
When you’re trying to determine the best kind of elastomer to use for your sealing or fastening application, keep the following few questions in mind:
Where and how will the sealing boots or fasteners be used? Applications that use elastomers can appear in many different environments, such as:
Drilling and downhole
Food and beverage (some elastomers have FDA approval; others don’t)
What kind of contaminants will the sealing boots or fasteners come into contact with?
Different elastomers hold up better against specific environmental conditions or contaminants.
Will the sealing boots or fasteners experience extreme temperatures or wide temperature fluctuations?
Will the elastomer be exposed to sharp objects or coarse surfaces or need to withstand a high number of actuations or repeated human contact?
What is your budget compared with the cost of failure?
Additional Elastomer Properties to Consider
Even though many differences exist between the types of elastomers on the market, they all bring unique advantages to injection molding processes and products. The injection molding process forces rubber compounds into a mold using high pressure. Elastomers perform well in this type of environment because they’re made of similar materials as those used in injection molding.
Compression molding is another area that benefits from the use of elastomers. The compression molding process takes high-viscosity compounds and processes them into a pre-form. It then compresses the pre-form into a mold before curing it.
Elastomers work well in a variety of hostile environments, such as:
Corrosive oils and chemicals
Food and beverage applications
Road salt distribution
Dirt, dust, and sand
Top-Quality Elastomer Sealing Solutions from APM Hexseal
Building quality sealing boots or fasteners involves accounting for many variables. Fortunately, we at APM Hexseal bring years of experience to the elastomer design process, helping customers across the globe find ways to get the most from their elastomer options.
We’ve compiled our extensive experience from working with elastomers into our eBook, “Elastomer Shlastomer, Right?”, which is available for download here. If you would like to learn more about our full selection of products and services, contact us today and Ask the Experts at APM Hexseal.
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At APM Hexseal, we know the importance of producing military-grade parts that work well under extreme conditions. Since World War II, we’ve been providing crucial sealing solutions for use in military applications, protecting sensitive electrical components from water, dust, dirt, inclement weather and a plethora of other environmental hazards. Our sealing solutions are robust, long lasting and are an economically intelligent choice. For these reasons, we have been the established industry leader in providing military-grade sealing boots and fasteners for more than 70 years.
We design and manufacture molded, sealed products that cover and protect various types of switches and circuit breakers, as well as panel openings, from harsh elements like extreme heat, strong winds, heavy rains, and fluid contamination. Along with our boots, we’ve developed a full line of self-sealing fasteners that can operate in a variety of environments.
Advantages of Silicone Sealing Solutions
Our sealing solutions offer a number of advantages that make them ideal for military components. Today’s soldiers operate in grueling conditions both at home and overseas. For this reason, we ensure that they can always rely on our products, under the most extreme conditions.
Our products provide protection from:
Grease and grime
Dust and other particulates
Dirt and sand
Snow, sleet, wind, and rain
Extreme temperature fluctuations
Mold and mildew
Due to their unique design, our sealing solutions offer 360° protection from hazardous substances and silicone rubber provides greater flexibility than other materials because it won’t interfere with mechanical, electrical and metal properties and functions. In addition, utilizing our reusable sealing hardware, to properly seal your systems and units, will greatly reduce the number of resources you spend on maintenance and repair, reducing costs, failure rate and downtime.
Rubber That Fights Back
Much like those who use them, our products don’t take sick days. We design our sealing solutions for optimal performance 24/7. A few of their most popular applications include:
Seal inside and outside of vehicle doors, windows, and hatches
Personal protection items, like helmets
Insulation for interior engine compartments
Vibration mounts for electronic displays
A variety of other custom molded rubber products created for choppers, tanks, missile defense systems and personnel carriers
Solutions You Can Rely on From APM Hexseal
Since the 1940s, we’ve provided top-quality parts for military and defense applications in the United States and around the globe. Our sealing products have helped us establish our place as a leading supplier for military manufacturers.
When you’re looking for ways to create tough, durable and long-lasting components, contact us and let us help you on your next project. Ask the Experts at APM Hexseal.
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At APM Hexseal, we work with a wide range of elastomers to deliver precision transfer and compression molding solutions for a variety of applications. Clients working with our dedicated Custom Design Department can expect top-quality consulting on how to develop an optimized sealant tailored to their needs.
We work with clients from conceptual stages all the way through production. You can find APM Hexseal products all over the world, playing indispensable roles in the manufacture of products ranging from doughnuts to drones. Below are some of the most unique ways that our standard or custom products have been used to protect sensitive electronic and mechanical equipment and keep them functioning at peak efficiency in hostile conditions.
Our Products Can be Found Working In…
Our products benefit doughnut makers by keeping the tools used to inject jelly or cream into the center of the dough free of contamination. Our self-sealing boots and fasteners allow these machines to handle sticky or viscous material without it clumping or leaking, resulting in the efficient creation of delicious products around the clock.
The FDA mandates that all commercial dairy farms use mechanical milking machines to improve sanitary conditions in barns. Many dairy milking machines take advantage of our range of self-sealing boots and fasteners to keep milk flowing from cows to storage tanks while preventing leakage or outside contamination.
Boats and Marine Equipment
Many boats use our long-lasting, corrosion-resistant, and waterproof self-sealing boots and hardware to prevent moisture, salt and dust contamination to sensitive onboard equipment. Our sealing solutions allow you to easily use navigational and other electronic equipment come hell or high water.
Luxury Sports Cars
APM Hexseal creates sleek, low-profile seals and fasteners that help high-end vehicles maintain their performance without hurting their appearance. Using our products, luxury vehicle manufacturers can deliver cars with trusted performance and chic aesthetics.
Drones experience a variety of environmental and pressure extremes. Our products help prevent moisture and dirt contamination when drones are hundreds of feet in the air, and they naturally adapt to the changes in pressure and temperature that drones regularly experience.
Commercial Fishing Reels
Our equipment protects sensitive switches and components from climate extremes on commercial fishing fleets. Because our sealants can adapt to pressure changes, they can withstand conditions on your ship’s deck as well as those hundreds of feet underwater.
Our sealants allow you to efficiently channel the flow of beer and other liquids into and out of kegs and taps. Because they’re comprised of silicone and rubber polymers, they resist corrosion that may result from the basic properties of beer and other alcohol.
Professional Music and Sound Equipment
Our sealing solutions keep instruments and sound equipment at optimal functioning capacity in indoor and outdoor venues. With APM Hexseal, your equipment will sound great no matter where you go, sealing against rain, dust, sand, and salt.
Snow blowers use sensitive electronics in cold and wet conditions. Our sealants help ensure that you will always be able to dig yourself out after a winter storm, as they prevent damage from occurring to the parts of the machines that shouldn’t contact snow, ice, sleet or salt!
Emergency vehicles demand optimal performance across all kinds of extreme conditions, meaning that they require components capable of withstanding intense work. APM Hexseal’s products seal against weather, chemicals, and dirt, so they function when you need them most.
At APM Hexseal, we’re proud of all the things our products can do, and we’re always seeking new ways our customers can use them. If you’re looking for a unique sealing solution customized to your needs, contact us and request a free quote today. Ask the Experts at APM Hexseal.
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Conventional fasteners, such as nuts, bolts, rivets, and screws, are relatively efficient at mounting a broad range of items to surfaces, or surfaces to each other. However, in some industrial applications, regular fastening is not enough to prevent the unintentional and unwanted flow of potentially damaging liquids and gases.
Fasteners integrated with embedded O-rings compress when torqued. This compression causes the elastomeric (typically silicone rubber) O-ring material to distort and form an effective seal between the mating surfaces.
Why Use Sealing Hardware
In fasteners subjected to internal or external pressures and excessive vibrations, the thread and bearing faces can act as ideal pathways for the seepage of fluids. Selecting the right sealing hardware is, therefore, essential to ensure that electronic, hydraulic and pneumatic systems operate at maximum efficiency.
Improper sealing can result in unwanted leaks and loss of pressure in some applications. This can lead to equipment damage, inefficient processes, and cross-contamination which can ultimately lead to reduced productivity, operational downtime, and expensive maintenance or repair operations.
Chemical processing industries, in particular, rely on sealing hardware to prevent the leakage of potentially hazardous gases and liquids. Other sectors, such as the petrochemical industry, require reliable sealing fasteners to contain flammable substances and mitigate the risk of ignition or explosion.
Sealing hardware technology is used in a variety of machinery applications, particularly in harsh or hazardous environments. Sealing hardware ensures that a proper 360° seal is achieved around the base of the fastener through the compressive action of the O-ring. This attribute makes sealing hardware ideal for various hydraulic and pneumatic systems, including:
Internal gear pumps
Aircraft refuel systems
Food and beverage processing machinery
Marine tools and equipment
Chemical processing systems
Oil and gas/petroleum equipment
Benefits of Using Sealing Hardware
A major advantage of sealing hardware compared to traditional sealants (such as deformable washers and liquid thread sealers) is its reusability. This means that sealing hardware products can be easily removed and reapplied with the same sealing pressure when torqued.
In APM Hexseal’s sealing hardware, the silicone rubber is positioned within a specially designed groove which requires minimum compression and deformation when the desired torque is applied. This results in a reliable 360° metal-to-metal fastener contact and minimum friction even over multiple reinstallations.
The silicone rubber sealing material is also resistant to myriad aggressive chemical compounds, making APM Hexseal’s fastener solutions capable of operating in harsh environments without the risk of seal degradation. For additional vibrational resistance, self-sealing fasteners may be integrated with locking features, including self-locking pellets, strips, and patches.
APM Hexseal Sealing Hardware Solutions
APM Hexseal offers numerous types of sealing hardware for almost any metal-to-metal fastening and sealing needs. Our range of sealing hardware can achieve pressure seal ratings of up to 20,000 psi. These products include:
Seelskrews® and Seelbolts® Our self-sealing bolts and screws provide reliable seals against various liquid and gaseous substances. Seelskrews® and Seelbolts® products are also vibration-resistant and reusable.
Seelnuts® APM Hexseal’s self-sealing hexagonal nuts are designed to be compatible with conventional screws, bolts, and studs. The single piece design is molded directly into a special cavity and helps provide superior sealing without compromising the nut’s original thread count.
Seeloc® washers Our self-sealing, reusable washers are constructed from a stainless steel disc bonded on one side with a specially designed silicone rubber. Seeloc® washers are capable of controlling pressures of up to 100psi. APM Hexseal is also introducing our newly developed Heavy Duty Seeloc® Washers, capable of handling torque values at least 50% higher than our original Seeloc Washers.
APM Hexseal’s range of sealing hardware is designed to meet the needs of any metal fastening application. Our engineers can also customize products for more unique sealing requirements. If you are interested in increasing the longevity of your equipment with effective sealing solutions, feel free to contact us or request a quote today.
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Industrial mechanical equipment must reliably perform essential tasks, even while operating in challenging conditions. The slightest error or malfunction can lead to time-consuming and costly maintenance or repairs. A lack of appropriate or complete sealing can cause failure in industrial machinery, so using appropriate sealing solutions and checking them regularly during maintenance operations can help to avoid unexpected downtime.
Improper sealing of critical elements, such as switches, circuit breakers, and control panels, can leave them vulnerable to adverse environmental conditions. Corrosion, contamination buildup, and electrical malfunction can arise from unwanted indoor or outdoor environmental exposure.
Sealing boots and bushings are employed by numerous industries to preserve the reliability and longevity of various tools, equipment, and their components. These elements act as barriers to protect sensitive components by sealing them from the external environment. Sealing boots are elastomer-based covers that are placed over various types of switch configurations, while bushings are specially designed to protect the mounting holes.
Eliminating the Risk of Contamination
Sealing products can be used in a broad range of industrial applications to form an impenetrable seal that either keeps contaminants in or locks them out. Boots and bushings are typically used to protect equipment against numerous indoor and outdoor contaminants including:
Extreme temperatures Extremely high temperatures can cause overheating, which can damage sensitive electrical components in switches. Conversely, extremely low temperatures can result in the formation of ice in the actuator wells if moisture isn’t kept at bay. Sealing boots and bushing seals can prevent these issues by providing effective insulation against extreme hot and cold environments.
Oil and chemicals Oils and chemicals resulting from leaks in HVAC systems, elevators, security systems, and other industrial machinery can travel down mounting holes and negatively affect internal circuitry. Sealing solutions, such as boots and bushings, are designed to form a 360° airtight seal around the switch, base, and mounting hole to prevent the intrusion of unwanted fluids. This form of protection also applies to spilled food and beverage items.
Environmental contaminants Contamination from the environment occurs as a result of both indoor and outdoor exposure. Rain, snow, dust, and sand are just some of the environmental elements that can seep into the vulnerable areas of electrical equipment and cause a multitude of problems. The presence of salt in the environment can also be especially damaging to various mechanical equipment and components. Salt-rich environments, which can be found near seawater and on roadways with deicing chemicals, can promote or accelerate corrosive processes.
Sealing solutions protect against contamination by forming a hermetic seal which shields sensitive components from these undesirable contaminants and conditions.
Common Industrial Applications
As technology continues to advance, so too does the reliance on electronic and automated mechanisms. These sophisticated systems, however, are highly sensitive to adverse external conditions and prone to frequent malfunction and failure.
Some electrical components also have interdependent systems where the malfunction of one element can impact the entire system. Sealing boots and bushings may be used to protect numerous interdependent mechanical and electrical systems including:
Aircraft control panels
Emergency systems – fire, ambulance, EMS
Utility systems – electricity, gas, water
Drilling systems and drilling monitoring systems
APM Hexseal Sealing Solutions
APM Hexseal offers a broad range of sealing products to help protect almost any mechanical or electrical device. Our seals are specially designed to extend the life of a wide array of switch configurations in the most demanding environmental conditions. Some of the sealing solutions offered by APM Hexseal include:
Toggle boots: These seals are ideal for switches that are actuated in a back and forth motion.
Pushbutton boots: Our pushbutton boots are engineered to protect switches that are operated by a push or press motion.
Rotary boots: These boots are designed to accommodate the rotational motion of rotary switches and can also withstand friction without impeding actuation movement.
Circuit breaker boots: Circuit breaker boots help to seal and protect breaker switches, preventing short-circuits and potential fire hazards.
Rocker boots: These seals protect rocker switch panels while accommodating their unique actuating movements.
Our engineering team can also provide customized engineered solutions to meet the requirements of any unique application. If you are interested in using our sealing solutions to protect your electrical or mechanical equipment, feel free to contact us or request your quote today.
We have been developing and manufacturing quality Sealing Solutions since 1947. Have a project in mind?