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What are the pros and cons of EPDM, Neoprene and Nitrile?

December 13, 2019

PGC converts materials like EPDM, neoprene and nitrile into custom gaskets for your applications.  We work with companies in the medical, heavy duty, fluid power, electronics, defense and aerospace industries.  Our engineers will help you in the development process to ensure you have the highest quality and best performing part for your application.

What is EPDM?

EPDM stands for Ethylene Propylene Diene Monomer, it’s a synthetic rubber that was developed in the 1960’s.  The durability and flexibility of the material lends it to being useful in varying applications.  It is especially useful in applications for sealing out hot and cold, electrical enclosures and HVAC systems.

Advantages and benefits                   

  • Water and weather/ozone resistant
  • Stability in high and low temperatures
  • Steam and water resistant
  • Highly versatile and flexible
  • Resistant to tearing
  • Good electrical resistivity


  • Not compatible with most oils or acids
  • Difficult to adhere to

Common Applications

  • Seals and o-rings
  • Tubing
  • Washers
  • Electrical cable-jointing
  • Roofing

What is Neoprene?

Is another synthetic rubber that was developed in the 1930’s.  It’s produced from the polymerization of chloroprene.  Neoprene has many uses and has even been used in the clothing and the household industry.  When used correctly, neoprene fabric can be weather and scratch resistant making it a popular material for wet suits, gloves, and other outwear.  Neoprene can also be successful in other applications if used appropriately.  It can be used for gaskets, hoses and might be useful in thermal applications.

Advantages and benefits                                                             

  • Water and weather/ozone resistant
  • Chemical-resistant
  • Insulation
  • Cushioning
  • Durable


  • Not compatible with:
  • Strong acids or esters
  • Ketones or nitro hydrocarbons

Common Applications

  • Industrial applications
  • Electronics
  • Safety equipment and construction
  • Medical applications
  • Marine
  • Automotive

What is Nitrile Rubber?

Nitrile Rubber is another synthetic rubber that is one of the most commonly used in the world.  It was developed in a response to demand during WWII.  It is most commonly used in applications that need to be oil, gas and chemical resistant.  These properties make it especially useful for the automotive industry, lab and kitchen settings.  It is used for a variety of machinery and common everyday applications.

Advantages and benefits

  • Resistant to oil, fuel and chemicals
  • Resistant to water
  • Resistant to heat
  • High tensile strength
  • Compression set resistance
  • Excellent elongation processes


  • Not resistant to ozone or sunlight
  • Inadequate for high temperatures

Common Applications

  • Gloves
  • Fuel hoses
  • Gaskets
  • Rollers
  • Plumbing materials
  • Molded and extruded products

Any three of these rubbers could help you in a wide range of projects.  From clothing to gaskets.  Contact us today to see if they fit your application needs.