Gallagher Fluid Seals recently added the Rubber Expansion Joint Surveys & Failure Analysis white paper to our Resources page. This white paper discusses the importance of inspecting your plant’s expansion joints. Proper design and maintenance of rubber expansion joints plays a major role in the overall preservation and lifespan of a piping system.
It will also discuss failure analysis of rubber expansion joints and some of the leading causes of joint failure.
Below is an except from the white paper, discussing failure analysis of rubber expansion joints, and what it can tell you about the overall health of your piping system.
There are perceptible warning signs when an expansion joint is failing:
- Arch inversion indicating a system vacuum that has exceeded the joint’s specified expansion value.
- Cracking at the base of the arch, which indicates the joint has been over-elongated and should be replaced with one of the proper length.
- Ply separation on the outside of the cover. This is an indication the joint has been subjected to excessive movement.
- Leakage due to over-expansion, mating flange surface issues, or poor installation practices, especially (but not limited to) bolt tightness.
- Ballooning of arch, which indicates excessive system pressure.