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Home > News > The difference between bearing Shields and bearing Seals
The difference between bearing Shields and bearing Seals
Ball bearings are available with and without enclosures, compared to open bearings, shielded and sealed bearings provide better protection from contamination and also add protection against lubrication migration.

The selection of a shield or seal is dependent on the bearing application and environment:
1.Shields are metallic and there is no contact between the shield bore and the bearing inner ring. Metallic shields are the most common and affordable type of bearing enclosure.
2.Seals are constructed from various elastomeric materials. The type of seal material selected can depend on factors such as application temperature and compatibility with other adjacent substances. Seals can be either non-contact or contact by design. With a non-contact seal, similar to a shield, there is no contact to the bearing inner ring. A contact seal is designed to contact the bearing inner ring with the lip of the seal.Both non-contact seals and shields allow reduced rotational torque as there is no contact to the inner ring.
3.However, non-contact enclosures generally provide less protection against contamination, as compared to contact seals.while contact seals provide better protection against contamination there is an increase in rotational torque due to friction between the seal lip and bearing inner ring. Sealing performance is a trade-off between protection and torque,

The following illustrations show section views for shields, non-contact seals, and contact seals