Consequences Of Overpressurization In A Hydraulic System

31 October 2014
 Categories: Industrial & Manufacturing, Blog

Too much pressure in a hydraulic system can leave equipment like motors and cylinders inoperable because of several different consequences. Maintaining the right pressure in your system is one of the most important aspects of keeping your hydraulic equipment operating properly; they rely on a careful balance of pressure and flow.

The following is an explanation of the three major consequences that can result from a hydraulic system operating at an excessively high pressure level:

Mechanical damage

Several types of mechanical failure can result from overpressurization. Too much pressure in a hydraulic system can cause hoses and seals to fail, and it can also lead to damage in cylinders, motors, pumps, and valves.

In motors that feature radial designs, excessive case pressure can result in pistons that rise up off the cam during the outlet cycle. This will destroy the motor, because pistons will be harshly forced back down onto the cam during the inlet cycle.

Excessive pressure in the pump or motor case can give rise to an overwhelmingly heavy load on the shaft seal lip. The seal lip may then cause a groove to develop in the shaft, resulting in oil leakage. This can cause instant failure when case pressure is greater than the design limits of the shaft seal, and it can also contribute to lubrication loss.

Loss of lubricant

Excessive pressure in a hydraulic system leads to heavier loads on lubricated surfaces. This additional pressure on lubricated surfaces can cause boundary lubrication to wear away as abrasion occurs between two surfaces.

Lubrication helps a hydraulic system handle hydrostatic force (load), which is the product of pressure times area. Thus, systems with higher pressure over the same area must handle more severe hydrostatic force, which can cause lubrication loss.

Separation of valve plate

In some systems, the cylinder barrel will be loaded hydrostatically with the load of the valve plate. These parts are pushed apart by a hydrostatic force pushing in an opposite direction that must be sufficiently offset to ensure proper lubrication of the valve plate and the cylinder barrel.

If the operating pressure of the system is too high, the hydrostatic force holding these parts together will no longer be adequate to stand up against the hydrostatic force pushing the cylinder barrel and the valve plate apart.

Unfortunately, it's not always easy to detect overpressurization before damage occurs. It's important that mechanics pay attention to pressure control devices so that they can detect any issues before permanent and costly damage is seen in hydraulic systems. Visit the site at this link for more information.