Gasket Materials are essential components used to achieve effective sealing in various industries including Aerospace & Defence, Automotive, Engineering, Marine, Construction, Heavy Plant & Machinery and The Energy Sector. Selecting the right gasket material is crucial for ensuring proper performance and preventing leakage under challenging conditions, such as high temperatures, pressures, and chemical exposures.

In this comprehensive comparison guide, we’ll explore different types of gasket materials, including Rubber, Paper, and CNAF (Compressed Non-Asbestos Fibre) solutions, providing an insight into a range of materials and their physical and mechanical properties, before offering tips on material selection, installation and maintenance. 

Key Takeaways: 

  • Gasket materials are used to create a seal between two or more mating surfaces with the goal of preventing leakages. 
  • Gaskets are used for a wide variety of applications amongst many professional industries. 
  • Different types of gasket materials exist to accommodate for diverse sealing requirements including temperature extremes, pressure differentials and exposure to chemicals, fuels, oils or environmental factors. 
  • The three main types of gasket materials are Rubber, Paper & CNAF (Compressed Non-Asbestos Fibre).
  • Amongst these three types of gasket materials Neoprene, Nitrile, EPDM, Viton, Natural Rubber, Silicone, Bonded Cork, Statite Oil Proof Paper and CNAF 4324 are amongst the most popular. 
  • There are many factors to consider when choosing a gasket material including: the type of project, physical properties, chemical, oil and fuel resistance, temperature range, longevity of life and cost considerations. 
  • Delta Rubber Limited supply a comprehensive selection of gasket materials available from stock, in many thicknesses, shore A hardness and colours to suit any project.
  • Our sister company Gaskets Direct is the UK’s first online gasket building, allowing you to design, develop and purchase custom gaskets in 4 simple steps. 

What are Gasket Materials?

Gasket materials are used to create a seal between two or more mating surfaces. Found in a wide range of applications, including pipes, flanges, engines, pumps, and machinery, the primary purpose of gasket materials is to prevent the leakage of fluids, gases, or solids, ensuring the integrity and efficiency of the system.

Gasket materials are selected based on their ability to withstand various operating conditions, including temperature extremes, pressure differentials, and exposure to chemicals, fuels, oils or environmental factors. They are often required to exhibit specific properties such as flexibility, resilience, compression set resistance, and compatibility with the substances being sealed.

Different types of gasket materials exist to accommodate diverse sealing requirements. Some common gasket materials include rubber, paper, CNAF (Compressed Non-Asbestos Fiber). Each material possesses unique characteristics and advantages, making it suitable for specific applications and environments. 

The choice of gasket material depends on several factors, including the application requirements, operating conditions and industry-specific standards and regulations. Understanding the properties and characteristics of different gasket materials is essential for selecting the most suitable material that ensures an effective and reliable seal.

In the following sections, we will delve into the details of various types of gasket materials, their properties, applications, and considerations for selecting the appropriate material for your specific sealing needs.

What are the Different Types of Gasket Materials? 

There are 3 common types of Gasket Materials; Rubber, Paper & CNAF (Compressed Non-Asbestos Fibre), each offering a unique set of properties and advantages for various environments and applications. Understanding the different types of gasket materials allows you to make an informed decision and select the most suitable material for your specific application. 

Rubber Gasket Materials

Rubber Gasket materials are widely recognised for their excellent sealing capabilities, flexibility and high resilience. Some of our most popular rubber gasket materials include Neoprene, Nitrile, EPDM, Viton Fluoroelastomer, Silicone and Natural rubber, each offering specific physical and mechanical properties suitable for different environments. Depending on the grade selected, rubber gasket materials offer resistance to high temperatures, oils, fuels, chemicals, water and weathering in general. 

Gaskets manufactured from rubber materials provide reliable sealing due to their ability to conform to irregular surfaces and accommodation of slight misalignment. Exhibiting excellent flexibility, rubber can adapt to various mating surfaces and maintain its sealing properties after repeat compression and decompression cycles. Not only do rubber gaskets deliver dependable sealing performance, but also long-term cost savings. Thanks to their durability and longevity, rubber material can withstand the test of time, reducing the need for frequent, costly replacements. 

The outstanding physical and mechanical properties of rubber gasket materials make them the most common choice for gasket manufacturing across various professional industries including automotive, aerospace, plumbing, construction and the industrial sector. Rubber gaskets serve a purpose to prevent leaks and maintain an airtight seal for engines, oil pans, cylinder heads and fuel systems, seal pipe fittings and connections for plumbing fixtures, maintain efficiency of HVAC systems by preventing air leakage and maintain operational performance of industrial machinery. 

Paper Gasket Materials

Paper gasket materials provide a cost-effective, yet reliable and high performance sealing solution for many industries. Offering an efficient gasket material that balances affordability and effectiveness, paper gaskets can be an economical choice without compromising on quality. One notable advantage is the materials versatility in terms of cutting, they can easily be manufactured into small intricate designs using basic cutting tools, allowing you to cut gaskets on the spot when immediate sealing needs arise. 

Despite their simplicity, paper gasket materials still provide outstanding and reliable sealing performance. Demonstrating good resistance to most fuels, oils and chemicals, they ensure sealing even within harsh industry environments. Additionally, paper gasket materials are often made from recycled or biodegradable materials, making them an environmentally friendly choice for gaskets, aligning with our focus on sustainability at Delta Rubber Limited. 

Gaskets manufactured from paper materials are growing in popularity due to their multitude of benefits and low costs, they can be found in professional industries including automotive, aerospace, marine and construction. Commonly used for valve covers, oil pans and water pumps in vehicles, fuel and hydraulic systems on aircrafts, ductwork connections on HVAC systems and cylinder heads in marine engines, paper gaskets contribute to efficient and reliable operations across many applications. 

CNAF (Compressed Non-Asbestos Fibre) Gasket Materials

CNAF (Compressed Non-Asbestos Fibre) gasket materials are used for their excellent sealing performance, non-asbestos composition and unique properties. Typically composed of aramid, glass fibres, fillers and specially selected elastomers, CNAF is a highly sought after gasket material for extreme industry environments. 

Exhibiting excellent temperature resistance, fuel resistance and unrivalled resistance to oil CNAF gaskets perform exceptionally for the vast majority of applications, with standing corrosion and degrading effects from harsh substances. Additionally, CNAF materials offer good compression resistance properties, maintaining their sealing properties even under high compression forces, ensuring effective and long-lasting sealing in applications with fluctuating pressures or boat loads. 

CNAF gaskets are often the preferred choice for projects where extreme heat is present, such as boilers, heat exchanges and flange connections. They can also be found in the automotive, aerospace and oil and gas sectors for fuel pumps, oil pans, flange connection, valve bonnets and other critical sealing where exposure to fuels, chemicals and oils are common. The reliability and performance of CNAF materials contribute to the safety, efficiency and longevity of equipment and systems within many industries time and time again. 

A Comparison of Gasket Materials 

Neoprene Rubber

One of the most popular and widely used gasket materials worldwide, Neoprene rubber offers a cost-effective solution for most general purpose gasket applications. The material holds excellent resistance to water, oil, UV light and fuels, making it for a range of professional sectors. Additionally, Neoprene rubber exhibits good durability, abrasion resistance and shock absorption characteristics. 

We offer various grades of Neoprene rubber, each offering specific advantages and catering to different environments. Some of the most common include: Commercial Grade Neoprene, British Standard BS2752 Neoprene, Expanded Neoprene/EPDM Closed-Cell Sponge, Flame Retardant Neoprene and Neoprene Nylon Insertion Diaphragm. We recommended comparing each grade before selecting a material for your gasket project, ensuring the optimum choice and long-lasting performance. Read our Neoprene rubber blog for an in-depth insight into each grade available. 

(CQ Grade Neoprene)

  • Hardness: 60° ± 5° Shore A 
  • Temperature Range: -20°C to +110°C
  • Tensile Strength: 5.0 min [MPA]
  • Compression Set: 35% 
  • Density: 1.4g/cm3 [Specific Gravity]

EPDM Rubber 

EPDM (Ethylene Propylene Diene Monomer) is a general purpose rubber material and another common elastomer for gasket manufacturing. Offering unrivalled water, ozone, UV and weathering resistance, EPDM is often used for gaskets exposed to the harsh elements. The material also offers good mechanical properties and abrasion resistance. 

As well as our Commercial Grade EPDM rubber, we stock and manufacture gaskets from WRAS Approved EPDM which is suitable for use with potable water. Our Closed-Cell Neoprene/EPDM Sponge also boasts some of the benefits of EPDM, combined with that of Neoprene. 

(CQ Grade EPDM)

  • Hardness: 70° ± 5° Shore A 
  • Temperature Range: -35°C to +110°C
  • Tensile Strength: 5.0 min [MPA]
  • Compression Set: 49% 
  • Density: 1.4g/cm3 [Specific Gravity]

Nitrile Rubber 

When it comes to gasket manufacturing for demanding industries such as automotive, aerospace or military & defence, Nitrile rubber often stands out as the most suitable solution. The elastomer holds exceptional fuel, oil and chemical resistance properties, making it a popular gasket material for components in engines, fuel tanks and other fluid handling systems. As well as its resistance properties, Nitrile rubber has a high tensile strength and good abrasion resistance. 

Our most popular grade is our Commercial Quality Nitrile rubber, a cost-effective elastomer that still holds many of the important characteristics of Nitrile. We also offer Fuel Grade Nitrile, British Standard BS2751 Nitrile, Nitrile/Nylon Insertion Diaphragm Rubber and PVC/Nitrile Closed-Cell Sponge. To learn more about Nitrile rubber and the different grades available, read our informative blog

(CQ Grade Nitrile)

  • Hardness: 70° ± 5° Shore A 
  • Temperature Range: -20°C to +90°C
  • Tensile Strength: 5.0 min [MPA]
  • Compression Set: 35% 
  • Density: 1.45g/cm3 [Specific Gravity]

Silicone Rubber 

Silicone rubber offers excellent temperature resistance, chemical resistance and the ability to perform consistently within harsh environments. The elastomers FDA certification means it can be used for sensitive food and pharmaceutical gasket applications including food processing machinery and surgical tools or equipment. Silicone also offers a low compression set, high flexibility and good tear resistance and therefore stands out as a durable gasket material. 

With many types of Silicone rubber materials available, each offering unique properties, applications and benefits, it’s important to understand which material would be most suited for your gasket project. To learn about each grade in detail, click here to read our Silicone rubber blog. Our most popular Silicone rubber grade is our White FDA Approved Silicone, a cost-effective silicone with FDA and WRAS certification. Among our range of Silicone gasket materials we also offer Silicone Sponge, HT800 Silicone Sponge, MF775 Flame Retardant Silicone, Electrically Conductive Silicone, Metal Detectable Silicone and Fluorosilicone Rubber

(FDA Approved White Silicone)

  • Hardness: 60° ± 5° Shore A 
  • Temperature Range: -60°C to +230°C
  • Tensile Strength: 7.9 min [MPA]
  • Compression Set: /
  • Density: /

Viton Rubber 

Viton Fluoroelastomer is renowned as a high-performance gasket material used for harsh professional industry applications. Offering unrivalled resistance to temperatures, chemicals and fluids, the physical and mechanical properties of Viton won’t be matched by any other elastomer. Commonly used for critical sealing components in the aerospace and defence sectors, high temperature fuel seals in vehicles and chemical industry gaskets, Viton is highly versatile and performs consistently in most environments. 

Our premium grade Viton Fluoroelastomer offers a low compression set, excellent tensile strength and good abrasion resistance, making it a long-lasting and durable Gasket material choice that will stand the test of time. To learn more about Viton, delve into our blog covering the materials properties, applications and benefits in more detail. 

(Genuine Viton Fluoroelastomer)

  • Hardness: 70° ± 5° Shore A 
  • Temperature Range: -20°C to +250°C Continuous, 315°C Intermittent 
  • Tensile Strength: 7.0 min [MPA]
  • Compression Set: 62%
  • Density: 1.85g/cm3 [Specific Gravity]

Natural Rubber 

Another frequently used gasket material, Natural Rubber provides an outstanding resilience, tear & abrasion resistance as well as high tensile strength. The elastomer is resistant to water, mild chemicals and offers excellent electrical resistance properties. Natural rubber gaskets are often used to help prevent vibration in heavy machinery, for low bolt loading flanges or pipes with poor quality flanges. 

British Standard BS1154 is our most popular Natural rubber material, available in both white or black and in Shore A hardness ratings from 40° to 60°. We also offer Natural shotblast gasket materials in Tan (Pure Gum), Black or Red colours and CQ Natural/SBR rubber sheet. You can find more information on our Shotblast Rubber solutions by clicking here

(BS1154 Z60 Natural)

  • Hardness: 60° ± 5° Shore A 
  • Temperature Range: -20°C to +70°C 
  • Tensile Strength: 17.0 min [MPA]
  • Compression Set: 30%
  • Density: 1.15g/cm3 [Specific Gravity] 

Nitrile Bonded Cork Rubber 

A premium material manufactured from high-quality cork oak, bonded with a Nitrile synthetic elastomer, Nitrile Bonded Cork is a general purpose gasket material providing high mechanical strength and compressibility, together with a highly unique resilience. Additionally the material holds resistance to fuels, oils, heat and ozone, making it a versatile gasket material for many applications. 

Some of the most common uses for Nitrile Bonded Cork include sound and vibration absorption in heavy machinery and equipment, valve or sump covers, electrical transformers and general gaskets in automotive or engineering applications. 

(Nitrile Bonded Cork)

  • Hardness: 70/80° ± 5° Shore A 
  • Temperature Range: -20°C to +110°C 
  • Tensile Strength: 1.72 min [MPA]
  • Compression Set: 25-35%
  • Density: 0.7-0.75/cm3 [Specific Gravity]

CNAF C4324 Fibre 

CNAF C-4324 (Compressed Non-Asbestos Fibre) is a high quality and high-performance asbestos free gasket material, manufactured from a carefully selected mix of aramid and glass fibres with a Nitrile rubber binder. The CNAF material is recommended for general industrial service applications including those with oils, hydrocarbons, low pressure steam and water, where its long-lasting performance and durability makes it stand out over elastomeric materials. 

CNAF 4324 meets the requirements of BS 7531 Grade Y and is WRAS approved and suitable for use with potable water. If you’re looking for an alternative grade of CNAF fibre gasket material, please contact us for assistance. We can source alternative grades at your request. 

(CNAF 4324 Fibre)

  • Hardness: /
  • Temperature Range: /
  • Tensile Strength: /
  • Compression Set: /
  • Density: 1.85/cm3 [Specific Gravity]

Statite Gasket Paper 

A low cost gasket material, Statite Oil Proof gasket paper provides reliable sealing and resistance to oils, fuels and mild chemicals on a budget. The impregnated paper is frequently used in the automotive industry where its resistance properties and operating temperature range make it suitable for many applications. 

Although we recommend Statite Gasket Paper for most general purpose applications involving fuels or oils, we can supply other grades upon request. Contact us with your enquiry and our team will guide you on the most suitable gasket paper for your project. 

(Statite Oil Proof Gasket Paper) 

  • Hardness: /
  • Temperature Range: /
  • Tensile Strength: 13.0 min 
  • Compression Set:
  • Density: 0.7/cm3 [Specific Gravity]

How to Select a Suitable Gasket Material?

Selecting a suitable gasket material for your project is vital, ensuring effective sealing, preventing leaks and ultimately giving you the confidence of long-lasting performance. With a multitude of gasket materials available, there are essential factors to consider to determine the most appropriate for your project including physical properties, chemical resistance, oil and fuel resistance, operating temperature range, suitability for intended usage, longevity of life and cost considerations. 

  1. Type of Project: Begin by evaluating the type of project the gasket is required for, consider the industry in which the gasket will be used such as automotive, aerospace & defence, industrial, marine or engineering, as this will dictate the environmental conditions the gasket material will likely encounter. 
  2. Physical Properties: Access the physical properties required for your project and determine whether flexibility, elasticity, compression set, tensile strength, hardness or density are important factors to consider. An understanding must be had into whether the gasket material needs to conform to irregular surfaces or withstand slight misalignment. 
  3. Chemical, Oil and Fuel Resistance: If you require a gasket for an application where exposure to chemicals, oils or fuels is a possibility, it’s critical you choose a gasket material that’s compatible with these substances. This ensures resistance to degradation, swelling or potential breakdown of your gasket. 
  4. Temperature Range: Taking into account the anticipated operating temperature range of the gaskets intended environment, select a gasket material that can withstand the expected temperatures without compromising on its crucial sealing properties. 
  5. Longevity of Life: Ensuring you select a gasket material offering durability and a long life-span in the environment you operate will help to reduce overall maintenance and repair costs in the future. 
  6. Cost Consideration: If you’re operating on a budget, carefully consider the cost of each gasket material and its effectiveness. Consider both the initial investment and the potential long-term savings based on the materials performance and durability. 

If you are unsure on the most suitable gasket material for your project, consult with our in-house gasket experts to gain valuable insights and recommendations. We are on hand to answer any technical questions and help to make an informed decision aligned with your project requirements. 

Installation & Maintenance Tips of Gaskets Materials 

Proper installation and maintenance of your chosen gasket material is vital to ensure its effective performance, whilst extending its overall lifespan. Now we will explore the correct measures to take to enhance the sealing capabilities of your material and reduce the risk of leaks, damages or failures on your project. 

  • Clean and Prepare Surfaces: Before installing a new gasket, first ensure mating surfaces are clean, smooth and free from debris, old gasket material or residue. Take time to thoroughly clean and degrease surfaces to allow for optimal adhesion and sealing. 
  • Apply Proper Torque: When tightening the fasteners, it’s important not to use too much or too little torque. Over tightening can deform or damage the gasket, while under-tightening can lead to insufficient compression and compromised sealing.
  • Use the Correct Gasket Sealants/Adhesives: In certain applications, a gasket sealant or adhesive may be required to enhance the sealing properties of the gasket. Choose a sealant or adhesive that’s 100% compatible;e with the gasket material and the mating surface. 
  • Monitor and Inspect Regularly: Regularly monitor the performance of the gasket and conduct visual inspections to check for signs of wear, damage or deterioration. Look for indicators of leaks such as fluid sleeper or discoloration. Be sure to address any issues promptly to prevent further damage and maintain the gaskets effectiveness. 
  • Handle with Care: Exercise caution when handling gasket materials to prevent unnecessary damage. Avoid sharp objects or rough handling that could result in tears, cuts, or deformations. Follow proper storage procedures to maintain the integrity of your chosen material. 
  • Replace as Needed: Although it’s important to select a gasket material that offers good longevity of life, gaskets don’t have an infinite lifespan and will eventually require replacement. Regularly assess your gasket’s condition to determine when a replacement is needed. 

Where to Buy Gasket Materials?

At Delta Rubber Limited we take pride in our comprehensive material selection, developed over decades of manufacturing gaskets and supplying materials to our partners in various professional industries, we offer an extensive range of high-quality gasket materials to meet even the most diverse requirements. Whether you need Rubber, Paper or CNAF, we are more than equipped to help. 

Available in a vast range of sizes from 0.5mm up to 25mm thick, various Shore A hardness ratings and different colours, our off-the-shelf range includes Neoprene, Nitrile, EPDM, Viton, Natural Rubber, Silicone, Cork, CNAF, Gasket Paper and much more. Click here to browse our full buy online range today! 

We understand the importance of time for most projects, therefore we ensure all gasket material orders are shipped promptly, utilising our reliable courier service for fast and efficient delivery. If you require a large volume order, please contact us to gain access to our exclusive wholesale discount rates before placing an order. 

If you require a gasket material unavailable online, allow us to source a solution for you. Leveraging our buying power and extensive network of suppliers, we can locate and procure almost any gasket material you may require. We aim to pass cost-savings directly onto you, ensuring you receive the most competitive prices without compromising on quality. 

Design Bespoke Gaskets Online 

In 2020 we launched our sister company Gaskets Direct, with the goal of serving our customer base looking for rubber, paper and CNAF gaskets. After years of development, we are proud to offer the UK’s first online gasket building platform, allowing you to design, develop and securely purchase standard of bespoke gaskets online. Whether you need a one-off custom gasket for a small project or large scale supply, head over to Gaskets Direct today and take advantage of our innovative service today

The process couldn’t be easier, begin by selecting a gasket shape from our range of pre-existing templates (for unlisted shapes, select ‘custom/specialist’ gasket to continue), now fill out the customisable options such as length, no. of holes, OD and ID. Choose a material from our range and the thickness required for your project. Once you enter your contact details, you’ll receive an instant quotation straight to your inbox, with a link to buy securely online. 

If you require assistance in designing your gasket or have any technical questions, our team are always on hand to help. Boasting over 90 years combined skill and experience in the sector, our goal is to support you, ensuring you receive a cost effective, high performance and durable solution each and every time.