Rubber hoses represent a ubiquitous part of the industrial landscape, used to control the flow of fluids such as water, hydraulic fluid, and coolant. Those who want to ensure smooth, trouble-free use of their equipment should always invest in high-caliber hoses from a reputable dealer.
Of course, even the highest-quality hoses won't do you much good if they aren't attached with equally capable hose clamps. However, many people fail to realize the variety of different clamps available today, each of which possesses its own unique set of strengths and applications. This article will act to improve your knowledge of hose clamps by discussing three of the most widely used styles.
1. Ear Clamps
Ear clamps consist of a circular stainless steel band with two "ears" across from each other. Also known as pinch clamps, they are frequently used to attach PEX tubing to plastic fittings. A particular ear clamp must have a diameter just large enough to slip over the end of the hose you intend to secure. In order to tighten the clamp, you must have a special pair of pliers - known as ear clamp pliers.
The ears on an ear clamp are hollow rectangular protrusions. An installer uses ear clamp pliers to squeeze the ear closed - thus, shortening the overall circumference of the clamp and ensuring a tight seal. An ear clamp's method of fastening means that it can only be used one time. Should the hose need to be removed or repositioned, the original clamp will have to be taken off and a new one installed.
2. Worm Drive Clamps
When a more adjustable clamp is needed, a technician will often reach for what is known as a worm drive clamp. Worm clamps possess a secondary benefit in that they can be installed on hoses that are already connected to their fitting. This reduces the amount of disassembly necessary to re-secure a hose or replace a bad clamp.
A worm drive clamp consists of a slotted metal band, usually constructed from stainless steel, and a threaded screw. The band circles around the hose and into the screw's slot. There, it can be adjusted to the desired tightness by means of either a flathead screwdriver or a nut driver. Their ease of installation makes worm drive clamps a popular choice for securing hoses in the automotive, aviation, and manufacturing industries.
3. Wire Clamps
Wire clamps represent one of the most heavy duty types of hose clamps. They consist of heavy gauge wire, which has been bent into a circular shape so that the two ends overlap one another. Each of these ends contains a hole. Through one hole passes a captive nut - in other words, a nut that cannot be removed from the clamp. Through the other hole passes a matching screw.
The principle behind a wire clamp is that, as the screw is tightened, the two overlapping parts of the wire are pushed in opposite directions. This acts to tighten the clamp's main loop in such a way that the pressure being exerted at each point of the loop is precisely the same.
Wire clamps possess a much greater fastening ability than ear clamps and worm drive clamps. Installers frequently prefer them for serious industrial applications, as they are able to withstand a much greater degree of wear and tear without working loose. For lighter-duty applications, however, other types of clamps may be preferable for their lower price tag and ease of installation.
Once you have found the right rubber hoses to meet your needs, you will need to determine the best type of clamp to secure them with. For professional assistance in making this critical decision, please don't hesitate to contact the experts at California Industrial Rubber Company.