When designing the fuselage and skin sections of a typical aircraft, it is highly important that all joints are secure and everything is well protected from the effects of pressure. Pressure plugs are a staple of wide- and narrow-bodied aircraft alike, coming in the form of heavy-duty fasteners that seal pressurized threaded holes. Also known as threaded plugs, such components can seal an area without becoming loose or failing under extreme pressure values. As leaking pressure can be detrimental for a number of reasons, it can be very useful to have reliable aircraft pressure plugs on hand during construction and maintenance endeavors.
Pressure plugs have a design that is fairly similar to many other aerospace fasteners, featuring a head on one end and an externally threaded shaft. Despite this, they are quite unique in their additional role of sealing a pressurized passage, rather than simply serving to hold two or more parts together. Pressure plugs are the only heavy-duty fasteners to achieve sufficient sealing for aviation needs, and they are installed by being twisted into a mating surface. Pressure plugs are fairly short in terms of the length of their shaft, yet they are still able to effectively prevent any leak of fluid or air from a pressurized port once they are implemented correctly.
The most common areas in which pressure plugs are used are the oil passages. Similar to any other vehicle or machinery with parts that are in constant motion, aircraft require lubricating oil to reduce friction, heat, and particle buildup. As oil is used for various needs, it will heat up and begin to expand. With expansion comes an increase of pressure as well, and it is important the pressurized oil is kept within the system and is not allowed to leak out. As such, pressure plugs are a perfect solution for maintaining oil levels within various assemblies and passages.
Alongside oil passages, aircraft also have various sections in which heated and pressurized fluids are stored. As an example, coolant is a common fluid found in aircraft, serving to reduce heat for the efficiency and safety of various systems in operation. Similar to oil, coolant will expand over time as it collects heat and rises in temperature, and this pressure will cause an increase of force within passages. To deter the chance of any leak occurring, pressure plugs are used to seal off such passages and systems.
As threaded fasteners that serve an extremely important role in standard operations, it is highly important that pressure plugs are routinely inspected, maintained, and replaced on a regular basis to ensure airworthiness. When you are in the market for such sealing solutions and need a dependable distributor to rely on, look no further than ASAP Aviation Supplies and our unrivaled inventory of parts.
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