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Selecting the correct bearing seal

Publication date: 
August 2011
Tom Bishop, P.E., EASA Senior Technical Support Specialist
Type of media: 

The primary functions of a bearing seal are to keep lubricant in the bearing and bearing chamber, and to exclude contaminants from that area. The discussion in this article relates to seals that are external to the bearing and therefore not a part of the bearing itself. Key factors in bearing seal selection include:

  • the type of lubricant (oil or grease)
  • the type of bearing (rolling or sleeve)
  • shaft surface speed, connection to load (e.g., direct-coupled or belted)
  • seal friction and consequent heating
  • physical space available