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Extension vs. Compression Springs: What's the Difference?

Views:701 Author:Site Editor Publish Time:2022-07-29 11:38:25 Orgin:Site

Springs are one of the most commonly used parts in a moving or stationary machine. However, did you know there are different types of springs? Well, there are two main types of springs; extension and compression springs.

Both are made of different materials, including cold-drawn steel, copper, titanium, and stainless steel. These materials determine the cost and use of the springs.

We have prepared a detailed review of the difference between these two springs to help you make a sound decision while shopping or looking for a spring to integrate into your machine.

Let's delve in!


How are Extension and Compression Springs Used?


Also known as tension springs, the primary function of these springs is to either bring pieces together or compress them. The criterion of functionality integrated into these springs ensures optimal functionality of the compressed or extended parts.

Extension springs can be used in a wide range of industries, including oil, rail, gas, and agriculture. They are quite popular in the medical industry and are mostly used in surgical lights and stretchers. Compression springs are used in industries such as automobiles and electrical.

Application of Compression Springs 


One of the most commonly used applications of a compression spring is in a spring-operated ballpoint pen. When the head is squeezed to remove the nib, the internal spring compresses and stores energy.

When the head is squeezed again to bring in the nib, this energy is released when the spring returns to its original form.

Such springs are also commonly utilized in mechanically controlled cam-follower devices, certain valves, and other applications. The trampoline has several extension springs that give the appropriate rebounding force based on its size.

When someone jumps on it, the spring stretches and stores energy in it. They then immediately release the energy by shortening their length and resuming their previous form.

Application of Extension Springs


To fit specific functions, extension springs are designed with a variety of hook or loop end configurations. Extended twist loops, headed inserts, expanded eyes, hooks, crossover center loops, rectangular ends, teardrop-shaped ends, and reduced eyes are examples of extension spring ends.

Extension springs vary by extended length, body length, maximum load, and loop or hook length. These springs are found in a wide range of products, such as garage doors, tools, washing machines, and toys.

Because of their size range, extension springs are useful in many applications, including medical equipment and off-road gear. They are commonly used in the following applications:

· Vice-grip pliers

· Car exteriors and interiors

· Washing devices

· Toys

· Garage door assemblies

· Carburetors

· Farm machinery

Difference Between Extension and Compression Spring


Extension Springs


Also known as tension springs, they are used in products such as brakes, levers, catches, trampolines, and many other applications. They work by absorbing and storing energy, which is also used to resist pulling forces.

The springs are placed on both sides of a component, and whenever they separate, the spring attempts to bring them back together.

The initial tension is what defines how firmly the spring is designed. If you are working with a heavy load, it is recommended to go with a stronger and wider extension spring. 

Simply put, these springs are designed to give an equivalent force to operating components that entails stretching to operate. As a result, they are made of materials that are quite strong and durable.

Compression Spring


Technically, a compression spring is designed to shorten the length under the action or length of external force. As compared to extension springs, compression springs are designed to compress when subjected to a load.

Compression springs are made of coiled metal that is quite similar to an extension spring. If you closely look at the two springs, you'll realize that the extension spring has a broader and wider coil.

The compression extension springs are also made of a thin strip of a coiled piece of metal, while the extension spring is made of a wider strip of a coiled piece of metal. Their criterion of functionality is also different from that of extension springs. You will note that extension springs lengthen under stress while compression springs shorten.

How to choose the Correct Spring Ends


Spring End


The spring ends are a distinguishing feature of springs. The spring ends will determine the spring to choose for a certain application or task needed. Some spring ends are hooked or looped, whereas others are closed, straight, or open. 

Resistance to Magnetic Forces


Will your spring work in a magnetic field? If so, you might need to get a spring made of non-magnetic materials, especially if the parts around it are magnetic. It will help prevent vibration when placed in a piece of equipment or instrument.

Spring Application


A spring will, of course, have to execute a specified duty or function. As a result, various springs are utilized for different applications; thus, choosing the proper one is critical. If you require springs for a mattress, for example, compression springs are more likely to be chosen than other varieties.

Resistance to Extreme Temperatures


This is the defining feature of springs. Many industries, especially automotive and aerospace, rely on the ability to work in severe cold or heat.

If your springs must perform in a tough environment, the first step in the spring design is to select a sturdy material that will not weaken or break in low or high temperatures. Inconel carbon, for example, can operate ideally at temperatures as high as 870oC.

Get Your Ideal Springs Today!


Choosing the ideal spring for your project can prove to be a daunting task. However, that does not mean that you cannot get your desired option.

If you put the above factors into consideration the next time you are shopping for spring, there is no doubt that you will experience exceptional results.

Contact us for the latest springs in the market. Let us ensure you get the best springsand we will offer cutom springs for your desired project.