The ubiquitous silicone O ring is without doubt one of the most widely utilized sealing elements in use today and with good reason. Cheap, effective, and simple to use, the silicone O ring is a sealing industry standard with a multitude of potential applications. The silicone rubber compounds used in the manufacture of silicone O rings lend the finished products an impressive range of positive working characteristics such as excellent weathering, ozone, acid, and heat resistance. The material does, however, have a couple of weaknesses including poor tensile and shear strength and low impermeability characteristics. These negative points notwithstanding, silicone O rings are an appropriate choice of general purpose sealant when used within their design parameters.
There are a wide range of materials that go into producing O ring seals, each of which lends the products a specific set of beneficial characteristics. Silicone compounds are one of the materials used to produce a range of general purpose O rings with good average strengths. Silicone rubbers are typically combinations of carbon, hydrogen, and oxygen in combination with a silicone base polymer. They exhibit excellent resistance to a number of environmental elements and are generally nonreactive and stable. Silicone O rings are also fairly cheap to produce, thereby making them attractive from a cost perspective.