Sometimes we get so caught up in the innovation, the technology, growth and the ability to create the complex that we just don’t see how a very simple component can make the process so much easier – the nylon washer.
You would expect that someone who works with tools as much as we do would know everything there is to know about nuts and bolts right? The problem is that fasteners and particularly washers are one of those topics that seems just too simple, even unimportant. But as in all things, simplicity is just an illusion, and even the simplest component such as the nylon washer has much more depth than you would imagine.
Before we get into the reasons, we do want to comment that in many circumstances, non-metallic nylon washers have the edge over other washers made of other materials. It costs a lot less, is hygienic and has a significant number of other advantages. But before we go into the distinct advantages, let’s discuss what these types of washers are and how we can use them.
Nylon Washers and Their Uses
Washers are used in many different products, especially those that you would never imagine. It is a product used in everything from your refrigerator and stove to your vehicle and even on a space shuttle. These hardware items usually have an outer diameter that is about twice the width of their inner diameter and are used to offer a smooth threshold between two surfaces. They also help distribute the pressure of a threaded fastener like a screw.
In most applications where two surfaces are fastened together, you need to use a washer as these hardware items play an important role in the assembly process and you shouldn’t overlook their use.
So Why Nylon?
Washers are made of a variety of materials, and most people use stainless steel, plastic, aluminum and more, but nylon washers make an excellent modern-day choice. Nylon is a synthetic polymer and in many cases this material can be a great option for your project.
Nylon is the perfect material for washers because it is resistant to abrasion, clean and smooth. But beside these benefits, it is also non-corrosive, and used in seatbelts, parachutes, nontoxic products, food procession, oil refineries and other types of fabrication.
Why consider using nylon washers in your manufacturing process. Here are just 15 reasons you should use non-metallic nylon washers:
Nylon non-metallic washers are very durable and they outwear other washers by about 20 to 1. Plus they offer a natural smoothness that promotes strength and wearability of the fastener itself.
Non-metallic washers do no scratch other parts. They are non-abrasive.
As we have seen before, stainless steel washers often cause friction and eventually abrasion to adjacent parts. However, nylon washers have a lower coefficient of friction make the attachment smoother and help in the long-lasting functionality of the parts.
Nylon washers also reduce noise and shock because they reduce vibration.
Nylon is a type of plastic, so it won’t rust. Nylon washers are not subject to any corrosion from liquids or from other environments.
Because of its composite material, the nylon washer offers improved compression under pressure so they are ideal for unfavorable fastening situations.
Nylon is also a better insulator and protects against electricity flow, which make it a successful contender for electronic equipment.
A Lightweight Alternative
Nylon washers minimize weight and can make a big difference when used in products where excessive weight is of concern. For instance in the automobile, aerospace, avionics and medical product fields. In this case it makes sense to use a plastic composite material like this.
Nylon and polyurethane absorbs impact and shock. It isolates stress and protects the surrounding components more efficiently.
Medical and Food Industry
Plastics are a mainstay of the food and medical industry, precisely because these materials are lightweight and non corrosive. Nylon washers hold other plastic components together and help the components remain sterile and free from other health risk factors.
Several plastics are available in fire-safe and fire-retardant grades. These products have reduced the cost of previously necessary fire-suppression systems, and, in some cases, reduced insurance costs in high-liability applications.
Plastics have long been used when high-purity applications are needed (fluids and gas). These plastics eliminate the risk of out-gas, leaking and contamination.
Everyone likes to know how to save money. So the biggest advantage to Nylon washers is low cost.
Given all the reasons for using the nylon washer, you really should look into it. After all, the lowly nylon washer is the basis for the durability of an entire product.
Choosing plastic washers for your next project
Plastic washers of any type can be the right fit for your application, but because you have so many choices, it’s extremely important that you seek professional advice before you make a purchase.
At E&T Fasteners, we are experts at understanding the benefits and drawbacks of fasteners and components that are made out of a wide variety of materials. Simply speak to one of our knowledgeable representatives and we can help you find the right plastic washers for your project.