Selecting seal type

Seals for bearing arrangements should provide maximum protection with a minimum amount of friction and wear, even under the most arduous operating conditions. Because bearing performance and service life are so closely tied to the effectiveness and cleanliness of the lubricant, the seal is a key component in a bearing-shaft-housing system. For additional information on the influence of contaminants on bearing performance, refer to Selecting bearing size.
Many factors have to be considered when selecting the most suitable seal for a particular bearing-shaft-housing system. They include:
  • the lubricant type: oil, grease or other
  • the circumferential speed of the seal counterface
  • the shaft orientation: horizontal or vertical
  • possible shaft misalignment or deflection
  • run-out and concentricity
  • available space
  • seal friction and the resulting temperature increase
  • environmental influences
  • cost
Where full application details are available, refer to:
SKF is one of the largest seal manufacturers in the world and can assist in the selection process if little or no experience is available for a given application. For additional information, contact the SKF application engineering service.
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