O-rings are the inevitable component are widely used in food processing equipment as they perform the critical task of sealing the connections in pipes, tubes, and other elements tightly. There are a wide range of O-rings manufactured from different materials. However, not all O-rings accommodate the stringent quality requirements of the food industry. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), the agency responsible for ensuring food safety, strictly recommends the use of O-rings that are manufactured from specific materials to reduce contamination and ensure higher efficiency. With the use of such FDA approved materials, food grade O-rings not only withstand the speed and abrasive demands of continuous operation, but also meet a rigorous standard of quality and cleanliness. This post lists a few of the highly recommended materials that go in the making of FDA O-rings for dynamic applications.
The food industry demands O-rings that withstand the build-up of micro-organisms, and intrusion of chemicals. Also, the seals must be non-marking, non-toxic and non-allergenic, and must work in a range of temperature and pressure differences. The following are the most popularly used FDA grade sealing materials that meet the aforementioned criteria and more.• Silicone:
Odorless and tasteless, silicone is widely known for its specific thermal, chemical, and electrical properties including excellent thermal stability, low chemical reactivity and low toxicity. Using food-grade silicone is a great way to prevent bacterial and fungus build up. The material can be effectively sterilized in a cleanroom environment, adding to its popularity for use in food grade equipment and systems. One of the notable features of this material is its capability to withstand the widest operating temperature ranges from -55°C to +225°C. • Nitrile:
Nitrile rubber (Butadiene Acrylonitrile), abbreviated as NBR, is known for its durability even after repeated daily cycles. This is one of the most economical FDA grade materials that exhibit excellent impact, oil, and grease resistance, high tensile strength and excellent abrasion resistance.
Nitrile’s excellent flexibility throughout various cooling and heating cycles makes it one of the most widely used elastomers for FDA O-rings manufacturing. It can also withstand daily cleaning, which is a critical requirement for food grade applications. Made to withstand a temperature ranging from -25°F to +220°F / -32°C to +104°C, it has desirable set of properties suitable for the food industry that demands high level of cleanliness.• Ethylene-Propylene:
Ethylene-propylene, or EPDM, is yet another sough-after material for FDA O-rings manufacturing and is known for its excellent chemical resistance.
Odorless and tasteless, EPDM is widely chosen in the making of O-rings that demand both flexibility and ruggedness. Offering excellent resistance to heat, steam, alkali, dilute acids, ketones, and oxygenated solvents, and sunlight (UV), it meets the FDA regulatory standards with temperature range -40°F to +230°F / -40°C to +110°C. • Fluorocarbon:
With its impeccable resistance to bacteria build up, harsh chemical and ozone attack, Fluorocarbon, also known as Viton®, is popularly used in the making of FDA O-rings for dynamic applications
. With high temperature resistance, low compression set, and excellent aging characteristics, the material is highly valued in the food industry. These are highly fluorinated carbon-based polymers that can handle high temperature ranging from 15°F to +400°/440°F/ -26°C to +205°/230°C.
With the stringent guidelines put forth by FDA, it becomes a responsibility of seal manufacturers to use the aforementioned materials while making O-rings specific to the food industry. Decision-makers in the industry also pay utmost attention to source only FDA O-rings for dynamic applications. If you are searching for such a manufacturer who owns expertise and experience in making O-rings utilizing FDA approved materials, then your search ends right at SSP Manufacturing, Inc (SSP Seals). Being a leading FDA O-rings manufacturer
, SSP Seals brings you high-quality O-rings that prevent cross contamination when used in food grade equipment and systems. You can get in touch with the team at the firm to understand their capabilities in FDA O-rings manufacturing.