Rubber Washer Reference Site

Hard Rubber Washers For Rigid Damping And Insulation


Hard rubber washers are spacing components made from a unique form of rubber that is notably rigid and sturdy. Because of this feature, they are used in many different industrial applications, including those that are equipment and structural. 
 

Key features of washers made from hard rubber are their ability to stop turning and slipping of hardware, as well as electrical insulation, vibration damping, shock absorption, and corking. Although standard rubber washers are frequently used as sealing washers, hose washers, and in other gasket capacities, hard rubber washers may not perform as well in such capacities. This is due in part to their limited elasticity and reduced flexibility. Although they may not be as effective for filling gaps, they can sometimes be used as corks or stoppers, provided they have a tapered exterior diameter.

The performance of hard rubber washers will depend, in-part, on their thickness. They can be effective vibration isolators and electrical equipment mounts when they are extra thick. They can also sometimes be layered with metal parts to function as rubber feet on various furniture and machinery bracing. The frictional coefficient of rubber gives these washers a no-slip, gripping function. Incorporating them into stands and mounts will provide added security. They can also help prevent abrasion and damage to surfaces, including those made from tile, wood, metal and other types of materials.

One of the main advantages of hard rubber washers compared to standard rubber washers is the added rigidity and support they can add to a fastener assembly. The inner diameter of the washer is threaded on to the neck of a screw, bolt, or other component. The washers can then be positioned between the fastener head and the installation surface, the nut and the installation surface, or between two joined parts. When used in such a capacity, hard rubber washers will not conform to the shape of surrounding parts as easily as flexible rubber washers, but they can offer more stability. They will be effective for keeping fasteners stable by preventing them from spinning in place. 

Rubber washers can serve as a barrier between materials that may be incompatible and can be used to prevent issues like galvanic corrosion, chemical leaching, and other reactions.

Hard rubber washers can be stamped in many shapes, sizes, and thicknesses. They are easily sourced from most hardware retailers. If particularly large quantities or special types are required, they are best purchased from a stamping manufacturer. 

Washer manufacturers and industrial fastener distributors are also better able to offer hard rubber spacing components that are made from natural and synthetic rubber-based materials. Hard rubber washers made from materials like neoprene can offer extended resistance in applications that are subject to more extreme temperatures and contact with certain chemicals.

As an alternative to hard rubber washers, rubber-backed or rubber-coated stainless steel washers will provide rigidity with damping and cushioning capabilities.

Can Hard Rubber Washers Be Used As Isolation Mounts?

Hard rubber washers can be used in a similar manner as isolation mounts, provided they are thick enough and sized appropriately to support the equipment. Rubber is useful for damping vibration and tremor and will help to stabilize some mechanical equipment. However, these washers may not be suitable for applications that require heavier isolation mounts or vibration damping. In such cases, spring-based mounts or mechanical shock absorbers will deliver better performance.   

What Are Rubber-Backed Flat Washers?

Rubber-backed flat washers are spacing discs that are made from metal, such as steel, stainless steel, or titanium. The washer is then layered with a rubber-based coating or is bonded with a rubber washer of the same size. Rubber-backed washers may have this layer on one side, which provides a cushioning and an anti-skid element. Metal washers may also be backed with rubber on both sides, which essentially creates a hard metal core within a compressible spacing element.