How to Measure the Durability of a Product
When you’re introducing your new product for the first time, you need to be confident that its durability measures up to both industry and consumer standards. In fact, this is one of the most significant steps when preparing for your product launch.
Sourcing a product for your machine can be a difficult task if you don’t have a reliable manufacturer to negotiate with. Also, finding the perfect manufacturer can be a great challenge. However, once you discover the right one to produce your product, and a relationship is built around understanding each other’s needs, the process should run smoothly.
This article provides information on how to find the right manufacturer and products, as well as how to test new products for durability.
Finding the Right Manufacturer
Sourcing products from a reliable manufacturer takes time and effort. Having a recommendation from a friend or colleague, who has negotiated with the company already in the past, is a sensible option. If they have worked with the company for several years, for instance, and had no problems, then you can be confident that they will be able to provide you with a valuable service. However, if you still aren’t convinced, you should have the right to either do some more research into the company or even schedule a consultation.
Having at least two companies to choose from is an excellent start. You will be able to assess how the manufacturers work with clients and handles their customer service queries, then compare them. This will enable you to easily come to a decision on whether or not they are experienced and professional enough for your project. Securing the correct manufacturer will ensure that your product meets its requirements and specifications. Having a sample made of your product is even better, as then you will be able to see if it is durable enough for its intended use.
Finding the Right Product
First, you need to find the correct product to accommodate your requirements. Keeping in mind the type of company you run and the raw materials you need to have the product manufactured in can help when proceeding with your search for the right product. A few points to keep in mind when searching for the right product include:
- Can the product be produced in the material I want?
- Is the product durable?
- Has the product passed rigorous testing?
- Will the product fit in with my business?
- Is the product compatible with my machines?
Testing the Durability of the Product
Once you’ve established the kind of product you need for your machine or business, you want to be sure of the durability of the product. To get this type of data, it must have been through rigorous testing to find out the length of time the product can carry out its function with no damage arising. These tests are set up by simulating the conditions that would ordinarily develop in the products’ lifespan. The rigorous testing simulators can test for any contingency that may develop with your product. The testing that may be carried out, depending on your product, are:
- Permeation – for fuel containers and pipes
- Leakage – for all fuels, liquids and gases
- Mechanical Shock
- Thermal Shock
- Thermal Cycle
- Pressure Cycle
- Tensile – generally referred to as tension testing
- Failure Points
- Component Degradation
- Operational Limits
- Lifetime Span
- Vacuum Cycle
- Slosh – for fuel containers and pipes
- Evaporation Emissions – for fuel containers and pipes
Here is a little bit more information about these different types of testing for durability.
Temperature testing is mainly carried out in laboratories. A reliable testing machine will measure the elevated behaviours of materials when exposed to extreme temperatures. Elevated temperature testing is carried out at 1800 degrees Fahrenheit. This is brought about by setting the product in a furnace with temperatures up to 1800 degrees Fahrenheit and running the computer controlled system to regulate the temperature levels.
When tensile testing, the product is placed into a testing frame where pressure is added to the product. The extensometer measures the strain of the product as the pressure is increased. The data that arises from the strain of the pressure capacity is recorded on a computer system and delivered to you in the test report.
Corrosion can lead to permanent damage to your product. Losing business, health and safety aspects, damage to your reputation and loss of income due to the product corroding is a possible outcome if the product fails the corrosion test. Using high-quality corrosion resistant and high-pressure vessels, your product will go through electrochemical monitoring, 3D laser profiling and scanning electron microscopy to make sure the product is anti-corrosive.
Vibration testing is generally conducted out on the production floor or within a laboratory setting. The vibration testing involves using either an electrodynamic vibration table or a servo-hydraulic shaker. Both these machines will provide shock vibrations to your product using hardware and software that measures the generated pressure and control of the result of the vibration on your product.
Ageing testing uses sped up conditions to advance the ageing process to test the product to its limits. The testing is usually carried out in a laboratory setting where the sped up conditions and continuous stress imposed on the product will determine its lifespan. The ageing testing can be set to your desired frequency, whether it’s two months, two years or five years. The conditions set for the testing will simulate the number of months or years required for your product and display the results in a report. The number of samples you wish to be tested is entirely up to you.
Fatigue testing will assess how a product degrades over time. This test sets out to add force to the product for a repeated number of times until the product breaks. This produces the result of how long the product should last under strenuous conditions. The testing machine is a table top machine that creates the simulated motion in rapid progression to replicate a fatigued condition.
The first signs of fatigue appear in the form of cracks occurring on the product. As the testing continues the cracks become deeper and longer, until the product cannot tolerate the stress anymore. The product will completely break under the pressure of the stress being put on it.
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