Taking A Look At The Top O-Ring Uses You Were Not Aware of

Monday, March 9th 2020, 4:16 am
By: News On 6


You probably use an O-ring of some kind at least every day, but do you know what an O-ring is or what the top O-ring uses are? Unless you’re a plumber or in a related field, we’re betting you have a few things to learn about O-rings.

O-rings are sealing gaskets that are round in both circumference and cross-sectionally. They look a little like rubber bands, but with a somewhat different shape. This shape is called a torus (informally, a donut).

Among the materials used for O-rings today are nitrile rubber, silicone, polyurethane, neoprene, and fluorocarbon. These synthetic materials have advantages over other flexible materials, like rubber.

About O-Rings

One place you’ll find O-rings is your plumbing. There might be one in your kitchen faucet right now that you need to replace. O-rings seal pipe joints, so they don’t leak water. There’s a small groove around the joint where an O-ring is seated.

A benefit of O-rings is that if the system they’re part of comes under pressure, the ring is squeezed against the opposite wall of the groove. Therefore, it holds a perfect seal—even when pressures fluctuate.

O-rings seal gas as well as liquid storage or conduits and have numerous different applications.

Top O-Ring Uses

Since O-rings get little notice, it can be surprising to learn all the places they can be found. The following represent a few of the industries besides plumbing that use o-rings and how they use them.


From automobiles to construction equipment, o-rings can be found universally in fuel and transmission systems.

Medical and Dental

O-rings are used in pumps, syringes, filtration devices, and connectors to prevent leakage and contamination. In dentistry, o-rings keep liquid out of implants, thus preventing infection.

Oil, Gas, and Petrochemical

O-rings are employed throughout these industries to prevent leakage of potentially dangerous fluids in pipes, tanks, and other storage or transport devices.


O-rings seal semiconductors from potentially damaging substances, including dust.

Food and Beverage

O-rings protect food and beverage storage units from contamination and spoilage. Drinking water systems also use O-rings. Any O-ring material used in food and drink applications must be FDA-approved.

Chemical Processing

In this industry, O-rings protect both workers and the environment from hazardous chemical leaks.

Fluid Power Systems

O-rings are essential to the functioning of hydraulic and pneumatic power systems, O-rings help maintain the water- and air-pressure seals.

These devices do need replacement fairly often—more than most of the parts they seal (plumbing pipes, for instance).

How to Replace O-Rings

If you’re interested in doing DIY plumbing or other projects, you can buy O-rings online at multiple outlets, as well as in local hardware and home supply stores. To order o-rings in large quantities, contact a manufacturer or distributor.

Instructions for replacing an O-ring will depend on the type of equipment you’re working with. If it’s a faucet or other home device, you can probably find an O-ring replacement guide online.

Uh-O, Time to Conclude

We hope you’ve enjoyed this brief foray into the top o-ring uses, maybe even learned some new things.

O-rings are pretty remarkable devices. They save a lot of problems that would otherwise come from leaking pipes, tainted food, machinery that won’t function, and all sorts of other difficulties.

So, if you see a worn-out O-ring lying around, don’t throw it into the trash. Instead, save it so you can get a replacement of the exact same size so that whatever faucet it came from can be restored to 100% functionality.

If this topic interests you, keep reading our blog. There’s always something of interest!

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