Why Should You Choose Helium Testing?

Over time helium testing has become the method of choice for the majority of high sensitivity leak testing applications. This testing facility is helping transmission suppliers improve quality and reduce the cost of producing new automatic transmissions developed to improve fuel economy.

Why is helium-leak detection so important?

Due to the complex operation of new multi-speed transmissions, transmission-fluid leaks can significantly affect performance. Detecting leaks at the earliest stages of manufacture, post-casting and pre-assembly, improves quality and customer satisfaction while reducing costs.

Leak points don't necessarily look like cracks or perfectly circular holes so may not be obvious when inspecting it through standard procedures. They may resemble a cave-like system of cracks and pockets within the metal. Air-pressure testing may take days to detect these types of leaks, whereas helium testing can take just a matter of seconds with a total part-to-part test time of roughly 30-40 seconds.

Helium testing is superior to other more traditional methods in a number of other ways as well. Compared to helium, air tests can be significantly affected by changes in temperature caused by hot or cooling components. They also take longer when larger components are involved.

Additionally, manufacturers may test transmissions with helium at the end of the production line. The finished transmission is filled with helium and sealed inside a vacuum chamber. If a leak exists, the helium molecules can be detected as they emerge from the transmission. The process is designed to replicate and identify transmission-fluid leaks that might occur under normal operating conditions.

Why test with helium?

Helium is extremely rare in the atmosphere, which makes it easier to find leaks. In addition, it is inert and therefore is safe to test with. Due to its small molecular size it is very searching enabling it to penetrate tiny holes that other testing fluids may not be able to. Helium with different levels of purity up to 99.99999% pure helium (N7.0), is available depending on your requirements.