Understanding the Risk
The internet has allowed us all to have world at our fingertips 24/7. While that can be incredibly helpful most times, there is a lot of misleading (and downright incorrect) information out there. Many companies claim that their fittings are intermixable or interchangeable with Swagelok fittings. But buyer beware. These claims are concerning on many levels:
- Other manufacturer’s components have not been made according to Swagelok engineering specifications
- Third party Regulatory and Standards organizations warn against intermixing
- Other manufacturers' warranties may only covers the replacement of the part, leaving the user responsible for the costs of damage incurred.
- There is no validation testing that covers all the combination possibilities
- Intermixing nullifies the Swagelok Limited Lifetime Warranty
As there is no industry-wide design standard for tube fittings and related components that, Swagelok strongly recommends against intermixing or interchanging parts. This is an unsafe business practice, leading to potentially hazardous situations in the case of a leak or a complete failure of a component. Swagelok hopes to enable you to make educated decisions when it comes to choosing fittings for your systems.
Independent third-party reviews have been published about intermixing/interchanging Swagelok tube fittings with three other industry leaders. This was originally published in the Journal of Engineering Design, Vol. 10, No. 4 written by Musa Mihseiin & Mike D. Seymour.
Always consider using parts, especially in critical applications, that were designed and manufactured to work together before risking that they are "similar enough". The risks can be high. To be safe, don't intermix.