Today's alternative powered vehicles and reformulated gasoline’s are causing increased occurrences of solenoid valve seal swelling and cracking in service. This has created the need to reformulate existing FKM compounds to maximize their properties in reformulated gasoline’s, which have significant amounts of MTBE and alcohol.
Only a small amount of swell can shut off valve flow. For that reason, FKM seals are now installed for gasoline and propane solenoid valve applications. Note the seal swelling on the right...more than enough to impede plunger travel.
Additives also have been causing problems with seal integrity, frequently in propane-powered vehicle applications. These fuel applications involve seal swelling with existing standard fluorocarbon elastomers, generically called FKM, but available with trade names such as Viton and Fluorel. Peter Paul discovered that, by maximizing the fluorine content of their FKM, the swelling was reduced. Further enhancement of the physical properties was made by removing the traditional colorant and adding carbon black. Therefore, the normal color of this new FKM is black.
Peter Paul sees more and more FKM problems in vehicle applications involving solenoid valves, both gasoline powered and alternative fuels (e.g. propane). In the state of Connecticut, for instance, reformulated gasoline can be up to 15% MTBE, causing problems with traditional FKM systems. Swelling and rubber decomposition appear with time. Beyond vehicular applications, other related uses, particularly in the medical field, have shown to be more stable and long-lasting when the new FKM is applied.
The 50-year-old Peter Paul Electronics Co., through a worldw1de distributor network, provides a broad range of standard and miniature solenoid valves; Explosion-Proof, High-Flow, and High Pressure models; complimentary manifolds and stacking valves in stainless, brass, or aluminum; solenoid valve operators for OEM use; and a vast array of body, housing, and coil options for standard and special applications. Most Peter Paul solenoid valves are UL recognized and CSA listed.
For further information, write:
Peter Paul Electronics Co., Inc.
480 John Downey Drive, P.O. Box 1180
New Britain, CT 06050-1180