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Seals for soft-closing systems

Novotema pioneered the development of specialist seals used in damping systems for soft-closing systems found on domestic furniture. Soft-closing technology is often found in domestic appliances, typically in the standard household kitchen, including draws, hinges, lids and sliding doors. However, with the growth in popularity, the soft-closing technology market has attracted many other industries including industrial, processing and robotics.

What types of damper seals are used?

There are two types of damper seals that are used in soft-closing systems, both of which we specialise in.

Pneumatic dampeners are known for their longevity and resilience to consistent movement, making them ideal for soft closing systems. Pneumatic damper have curves that run almost parallel to each other with large load-bearing capabilities, meaning that in domestic application, draws are able to be loaded with heavy items.

The pneumatic damper is made up of a piston rod with a ball or magnetic head, enclosed within this is an elastomer seal which is typically an o-ring.

Hydraulic dampeners are also known as fluid dampeners. The main benefits of these dampeners are that they offer dependability with a large load-bearing capacity, offering an almost seamless transition when the application is closing. The seal used in a hydraulic damper is often a lip seal which is located in a piston rod.

Elastomer materials

There are a few common types of elastomer materials suitable for soft-closing systems, however, the variant force within a hydraulic piston rod, can provide a challenging environment to certain elastomers.

Typical elastomers used in domestic damping systems are:

NBR - this elastomer is also known as Nitrile rubber and has good resistance to mineral oil-based lubricants and greases. These properties make it an excellent option for sealing solutions in the domestic household.

VMQ - this elastomer is also known as Vinyl-Methyl-Silicone, has good heat resistance and cold flexibility, and is particularly good for insulation. These properties make VMQ an elastomer for some domestic appliances.

How can we help?

We are pioneers in the development of elastomer compounds and providing sealing solutions made for dampening systems for soft-closing mechanisms.

We offer:

  • Elastomer material recommendations and expert technical support
  • Toolmaking capabilities - specialist in-house facility
  • Component design from our expert engineering team
  • Innovative surface treatments
  • Full batch traceability throughout the manufacturing process including the issuing of BS EN ISO 10204 certification
  • Laboratory testing and analysis service (including failure analysis, troubleshooting and material ID)
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