Choosing the right industrial hose requires careful consideration of many factors, including flow rates, media pressure and temperature, surrounding environment, and more. This, in turn, involves selecting the optimal combination of components to create the hose that can meet your application’s requirements and operational conditions. One such component that warrants much thought is the reinforcement layer, which provides strength to the hose’s core tube both longitudinally and axially to handle much higher pressures and withstand the demands of your intended use case.
Although various factors determine hose longevity, choosing a sufficiently strong reinforcement layer is among the most important. Since there are different kinds of reinforcement layers to choose from, we go over the key characteristics to take into account when working with your hose supplier to make the best choice for your needs.
Reinforcement materials come in various types, such as plastic, stainless steel, fibre, and many more, each uniquely influencing the hose’s performance characteristics. The application’s needs often determine which reinforcement material is preferable, along with the materials for the hose’s end connections, cover, and core.
For instance, a hose with a braided stainless steel reinforcement layer combined with a complementary core material will provide excellent temperature and pressure resistance. However, this comes at the cost of delivering dynamic performance and proper flexibility, which is generally required for use cases with inconsistent pressurisation.
Conductivity is another key aspect to consider when selecting the right reinforcement material for your needs, as it is often desirable in some applications but not in others because it poses a significant performance or safety risk. For example, use cases that need the two ends of the hose to be electrically isolated may require a non-conductive Teflon hose covered with a non-metallic reinforcement layer.
A hose’s reinforcement layer consists of wires arranged in one of two popular styles: braided and coiled. Braided reinforcements combine these wires in a stronger and more resilient configuration and are also not at risk of untwisting whenever the hose is pressurised, unlike their coiled counterpart. Thus, when greater longevity and reliability under pressurisation are the top priority, braided reinforcements are the best choice.
In contrast, coiled reinforcements make up for their lower strength and tendency to untwist themselves by being more cost-effective than braided reinforcements. This makes them more suited for applications with little to no pressurisation and inherently requiring regular replacements.
When opting for braided reinforcements, it is important to note that the braiding itself comes in a wide variety of pitch angles and wire thickness, which affects the hose’s pressure rating, flexibility, temperature performance, and other specifications. Moreover, ensure that the braid you choose complements the hose’s core material to achieve the best performance and value.
For instance, let us say we have a hose with a corrugated metallic core that already provides excellent hoop strength by itself. A good braid reinforcement to go with it would have a flatter design, as it will grant greater resistance to the core growing in length (instead of diametrically). The braid wires in this configuration may be arranged to intersect at many different angles to achieve different performance characteristics required by the given application.
Elsewhere, the attributes of the braid wiring can affect the other aspects that influence hose performance; some braids are made up of fewer but thicker wires with limited flexibility or consist of many thinner wires with higher flexibility without sacrificing strength and pressure resistance.
Not all industrial hoses are created equal or manufactured to the same high standard, which is evident in the varying quality of reinforcement braidings. By having a working knowledge of reinforcement braids and how they influence a hose’s overall performance, organisations are better poised to select the hose configuration that can deliver the highest possible reliability and performance in their systems.
For all your industrial hose needs, look no further than Pharmchem Engineering. As a leading supplier of industrial engineering supplies, we are your one-stop shop for hoses, pipeline pigging equipment, dry disconnect couplings, and more, all guaranteed to be of exceptional quality and robust reliability. If you can’t find the exact product you need, we also provide customisation services that can create the best possible product that fits your specific application. To learn more about our products, feel free to contact us today.