Steel Mills & Metal Processing

Steel Mill Seals and Metal Processing Seals


High-quality, custom-made steel mill seals and metal processing seals

Nearly a decade ago, System Seals transformed the reliability of steel mill hydraulics nationwide when it first applied HNBR material as a replacement for the old Viton. The breakthrough came from a single customer concerned that fire-resistant fluids were degrading Viton seals. 

This one request inspired System Seals to create an industry-wide advancement. After extensive laboratory testing with a variety of new materials, System Seals focused on the leading design and verified the results through independent labs. In the end, the new HNBR seal design become the industry standard.

Most steel mill operators don’t realize the extent to which they can dramatically improve performance. Using finite element analysis and advanced engineering techniques, custom products from System Seals for both OEM and maintenance and repair can dramatically extend the time between scheduled maintenance.

In some cases, advanced seal technology allows mills to skip an entire outage and save millions of dollars in the process. For OEMs, System Seals can help design more compact hydraulic systems that save time and money in production.

Today, System Seals continues to help steel mills improve their designs and materials every day. System Seals creates its own proprietary PTFE compound blends that consistently outperform competitor seals in side-by-side testing. The results offer longer life, greater reliability, and the option to extend time between outages.

System Seals’ custom seal solutions include both rolling mill and steel making solutions.

We offer a full spectrum of rolling mill seals, including for:

  • Hydraulic Automatic Gauge Control (HAGC) Cylinders
  • Automatic Width Control (AWC) Cylinders
  • Work Roll Bending Cylinders
  • Back-Up Roll Balance Cylinders
  • Coiler Mandrels
  • Tension Reel Cylinders
  • Castrip Pinch Roll Cylinders
  • Back Table Seals
  • Hydraulic Quick-Change Cylinders
  • Strand Guide Cylinders
  • Cantilever Mill Stand Seals
  • Plate Levelers
  • Tension Levelers

For steel making facilities, our custom seal solutions include options for:

  • Ladle Lift and Turret Cylinders
  • Mold Oscillation Cylinders
  • Slewing Cylinders
  • Furnace Tilt Cylinders
  • Furnace Slewing Cylinders
  • EAF Roof Support Cylinders
  • Argon Gas Seals for Ladle Transfer Cars
  • Furnace Door Cylinders
  • Caster Segment Cylinders
  • Caster Roller Bearing Seals

Steel Mill Seals

Hydraulic Automatic Gauge Control (HAGC) Cylinder seal

There are many types of seals used in steel mills, but one of the most common types is the Hydraulic Automatic Gauge Control (HAGC) Cylinder seal. HAGC cylinders are used to control the gauge of the steel during production. If a HAGC cylinder seal fails, it can cause serious problems for the steel mill.

HAGC seals are made from a variety of materials, but the most common material is polyurethane. Polyurethane is a durable material that can withstand the high pressures and temperatures found in steel mills. However, polyurethane is not invulnerable to failure. The most common cause of failure for HAGC seals is abrasion.

Abrasion is caused by the friction between the seal and the steel. This friction can wear down the seal, causing it to fail. Abrasion can be prevented by using a seal that is made from a more durable material, such as Teflon. Teflon is a synthetic material that is much more resistant to abrasion than polyurethane.

Another cause of failure for HAGC seals is chemical attack. Chemical attack can occur when the chemicals used in the steel mill come into contact with the seal. This can happen if the seal is not properly protected from the chemicals or if the chemicals are allowed to build up on the seal. Chemical attack can damage the seal and cause it to fail.

HAGC seals can also fail due to poor installation. If the seal is not installed correctly, it can be damaged during installation. This can cause the seal to leak or come loose from the cylinder.

To prevent HAGC seals from failing, it is important to follow the manufacturer’s instructions for installation and use. It is also important to inspect the seals regularly for damage or wear. Damaged or worn seals should be replaced immediately.

Search System Seals:

  • The new seal performed flawlessly in initial lab tests and then for more than a year in the field. System Seals now produces all new pitch-bearing seals for one of the largest wind turbine manufacturers in the world.

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Download the System Seals Steel and Metal Processing catalog to learn more about our proprietary seals and how we help steel and aluminum mills save millions of dollars in uptime and productivity.


“System Seals consistently produces high quality seals for our products, and I highly recommend them for all high-performing seals”

– Peter Pfund, Schuler Incorporated

Contact our Steel Mills & Metal Processing Specialist

Julian Webster-Gigg

With more than 25 years of experience, Julian Webster-Gigg has spent his career trouble shooting seal issues around the world and developing innovative solutions for difficult applications. Trained in machine and elastomer technologies, Julian has worked extensively with steel mills, mining operations, heavy-duty equipment, hydraulic repair shops and pharmaceutical plants.

Tel: 216-904-0956