Vanguard Products Corporation is an ISO 9001:2015 certified manufacturer and complete, one-stop shop for custom extruded and molded rubber seals and gaskets. Employing custom compound formulations, we provide cost-efficient, high precision products engineered for top performance and optimized cost. We also offer in-house secondary operations, such as cutting, bonding, adhesive application, and frame and o-ring fabrication—along with extensive engineering support services. Our products are available in a variety of profiles and configurations, ranging from simple to complex, in quantities ranging from low to high volumes.
In the automotive sector, seals and gaskets are used in mechanical equipment to close up the spaces between components and prevent the escape or ingress of dust or dirt.
There are many different types of automotive seals and gaskets, such as:
Cooling System Seals and Gaskets
Cooling system gaskets are suitable for fixing or sealing matched components and pipe joints to inhibit fluid leakage. These types of gaskets are often made from sheet materials such as graphite, silicone, nitrile, fluosilicone, fluorocarbon, and neoprene.
Differential Seals and Gaskets
Differential seals and gaskets reduce the risk of dirt, grime, and other contaminants entering the axle tube, which can damage the transmission components, and maintain the positioning of gear oil. These components are affixed to the transmission axle and demonstrate excellent flexibility.
Engine Seals and Gaskets
Engine gaskets ensure that oil, coolants, fluids, and air do not leak into or out of the internal combustion engine. It is the most vital of all gaskets in an automobile engine because it absorbs all of the heat and compression produced.
Fuel Supply Seals and Gaskets
Fuel supply gaskets produce a strong seal between two static surfaces to maintain the appropriate pressure within the engine’s enclosure. These flexible gaskets are placed between the fuel pump mounting surface and the fuel pump space block.
Transmission Seals and Gaskets
Transmission seals and gaskets create pressure-tight connections between the automobile’s transmission components. There are generally two types of transmission gaskets:
- Internal gaskets (used to prevent leaks in accumulators, clutch packs, and servos)
- External gaskets (used to prevent fluids from leaking outside of the transmission axle case)
Gaskets and seals are used around vehicle windshields to maintain air quality within the enclosed space and prevent air leaks. They are also used to protect against external elements, such as water, wind, and noise.
Similar to windshield gaskets and seals, car door seals also prevent moisture and wind from entering the vehicle through gaps between the doors and body. These seals also help the doors fit more snugly in the body openings, reducing the risk of rattling during operation of the vehicle.
Electrical Junction Boxes/Fuse Boxes
These seals are used both in the engine compartment and the passenger compartment to provide protection from moisture and dust/dirt intrusion into the sensitive electrical systems in modern trucks and automobiles. They can also be made to be conductive to provide for EMI/RFI shielding for Lidar and vision systems on self-driving automobile and engine/vehicle control modules.
Food and Beverage Industry
Gaskets and seals used in the food and beverage industry are made from food-grade rubber polymers that meet FDA and USDA requirements such as 21CFR177.2600; and and are often certified by NSF International to NSF-51. These materials feature a resistance to bacteria buildup, are safe for contact with food articles, have a wide range of working temperatures both high and low temperature, have excellent chemical resistance to cleaning chemicals, fats and oils; and are odorless and tasteless. Food-grade gaskets and seals are used throughout the food and beverage industry in places like oven and refrigeration seals, peristaltic pumps, diary milking machines, and packaging and packaging equipment.
The electronics industry requires durable and easy-to-install seals with tight tolerances to protect sensitive instruments and gauges not only from water and dust, but oftentimes from electromagnetic interference (EMI). Many times these types of gaskets need to be certified to a military specification (ie. MIL-DTL-83528 or A-A-59588), or other industry standards such as UL50, UL508, and/or UL94HB or UL94V0. Some of the common applications for these seals include:
- Outdoor telecommunications/electrical equipment
- Electronic Connectors, Medical Electronics and Instruments, Military/Aerospace Electronics
These types of seals must endure extreme temperature swings both high and low while maintaining their elastic performance. They are critical in providing sealing from the elements, but must also withstand exposure to various chemical and hold up under high ultraviolet radiation. In military applications, these type of seals can even provide EMI/RFI shielding for hardened TEMPEST enclosures.
Medical Equipment Seals
These types of seals must be able to withstand the rigors of sterilization and aggressive cleaning chemicals. They are often constructed of very clean compounds that have been tested to USP Class VI.. In many cases, they are fabricated to be electrically conductive to shield from the extensive EMI/RFI that is present in hospital settings.
Other Applications for Custom Rubber Seals & Gaskets
Vanguard’s custom rubber seals and gaskets are used in many applications and industries throughout the world. Vanguard has vast experience in designing and manufacturing for virtually any requirement including:
- Industrial And Commercial Food Oven And Cart Seals And Gaskets
- Washers And Seals For Electronics And Electrical Equipment
- Architectural And Window Seals
- Electrical Connector Seals
- Industrial Louvers and HVAC Equipment
- Automotive Electrical Enclosure Weather Seal
- Outdoor Electrical Enclosures
- Outdoor Cellular Telecommunications Enclosures
- Water Purification and Filtration Seals
- Fiberoptic Sheathes
- Silos and Storage Tank Seals
- Dairy Seals
- Peristaltic Tubing
- Plastic Case Seals
Materials for Custom Rubber Seals and Gaskets
Custom seals and gaskets are available in a variety of rubber materials, including:
Buna-N—also known as nitrile butadiene rubber (NBR) or nitrile rubber—exhibits good elongation properties and excellent resistance to petroleum-based fluids, fats, oils, greases, and chemicals. Buna-N seals and gaskets are commonly used with fuel and hydraulic components..
Ethylene-propylene-diene (EPDM) has exceptional electrically insulative properties and are resistant to aging from weather, ozone, water, and chemicals. EPDM tubing is typically black in color, and are resistive to steam as well.
Isoprene/Natural Gum Rubber
Gum rubber is characterized by its very high tensile strength and elongation. It has had extensive use in the medical industry, but is commonly avoided now due to the prevalence of latex allergies.
Neoprene demonstrates relatively good chemical resistance., but does not exhibit as much electrical insulation or low temperature performance of other elastomers. It is commonly used where a high degree of toughness is required in an elastic product.
Styrene Butadiene Rubber (SBR) is a copolymer of styrene and butadiene that exhibits very low gas permeability and a good degree of toughness. This makes it ideal for use in bladders and inflatable seals as the internal pressure is held for long periods of time.
Silicone is characterized by its stability, lack of odor and taste, excellent weathering properties, extreme temperature capabilities, and resistance to ozone and oxidation. Common applications for silicone tubing and gaskets include the medical, pharmaceutical and food processing industries; architectural and construction seals, and electronic seals. It is easily compounded into a broad array of colors and hardnesses, and can be formulated to be electrically conductive for EMI shielding applications.
Fluorosilicone exhibits many of the same mechanical characteristics of silicone, but provides an extra degree of chemical resistance to many fuels and oils. It is commonly used in the military and aerospace industries.
Commonly known by their trade names Viton® and Fluorel®, these elastomers exhibit excellent resistance to oils, greases, and concentrated acids. These qualities make it suitable for use in extreme applications (e.g., exposure to potent chemical, fuels, and explosive conditions), such as those found in the oil, gas, and mining industries. Since these are organic based elastomers, their temperature range is not as broad as silicone or fluorosilicone.
If you are not sure which material is best for you application, please contact one of our application specialists today to assist you.
Capabilities and Ranges for Custom Rubber Seals & Gaskets
- Liquid Injection Molding (LIM Silicone)
- Insert Molding
- Single, Coextrusion, and Triextrusion capability
- Multiple Durometer/Hardness
- Multiple Material Extrusion
- Insert Extrusion
Custom Formulation for Mechanical Properties, Chemical Resistance, Temperature Resistance, and Color Matching
- Die Cutting
- Adhesive Application
- Frame & O-Ring Fabrication
- Special Put-Ups
- Special Packaging
- PSA Application
Contact Vanguard Today for Your Rubber Material Needs
There is a wide range of rubber materials available for use in seals and gaskets, and the ones outlined above represent a small portion of the total material options.
At Vanguard Products Corporation, we offer a diverse selection of custom extruded and molded gaskets and seals in a variety of high quality, high performance rubber materials. For further information on the seal and gasket materials available or assistance with selecting the right material for your sealing or gasketing application, contact us today.