SELECTING THE PROPER GASKET MATERIAL
Service Condition Sheet / Factor Affecting Gasket Performance Sheet
The optimum gasket material would have the following characteristics. It would have the chemical resistance of PTFE, the heat resistance of graphite, the strength of steel, require zero seating stress such as soft rubber and be inexpensive. Obviously there is no known gasket material that has all these characteristics and each material has certain limitations that restrict its use. It is possible to overcome limitations partially by several methods such as including the use of reinforcing inserts, combining it with other materials, varying the construction or density, or by designing the joint itself to overcome some of the limitations. Obviously mechanical factors are important in the design of the joint but the primary selection of a gasket material is influenced by three factors.
As a consequence, it is often necessary to "field-test" materials for resistance to corrosion under normal operating conditions to determine if the material selected will have the required resistance to corrosion.