Spicer Speciality Axle Division - Technical Publications
Viton 'O' rings and seals (flouro-elastomers) - safety hazards.
It has been brought to our attention that 'Viton' material used in manufacture of oil seals and 'O' rings,
produces a highly corrosive acid (hydroflouric) when subjected to temperatures above 315° C.
The resulting contamination can have extreme consequences on human tissue since it is almost
impossible to remove after contact.
We therefore recommend the following procedure when it is necessary to inspect any equipment that
has been subjected to a high temperature i.e. fire.
Visually inspect for any gaskets or seals which have suffered from heat ; they will appear
black and sticky.
If this is affirmed :- Do Not Touch.
Any flouro-elastomer (Viton, Flourel or Tecmoflon) should be considered dangerous but
natural rubber and nitrile are non-hazardous.
If flouroelastomer seals have been used, then the affected area MUST be
decontaminated before undertaking further work.
Disposable heavy duty gloves (neoprene) MUST be worn and the affected area
decontaminated by washing thoroughly with limewater (calcium hydroxide solution).
Any cloths, residue and gloves used MUST be safely discarded after use.
Burning of the discarded items is NOT RECOMMENDED, except in an approved
incineration process where the gaseous products are treated by alkaline scrubbing.
PREPARATION FOR OVERHAUL
Before attempting to remove road wheels, drive vehicle onto a solid concrete base and over a
maintenance pit if possible, preferably after a short run to warm the oil.
Chock appropriate wheels.
With road wheels on ground, loosen wheel nuts on both sides.
Jack up axle and support with suitable axle stands.
Remove wheel nut and take off road wheels.
With suitable drip trays placed under drive head and axle casing ends
(approx. capacity drive head 14 pints (8 litres) then remove drain and filler plugs in drive head (36 & 30)
to drain oil.
Disconnect propshaft from drive head.
Manual No. 1785 Issue A
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