Updated at: 29-04-2022 - By: Helen Skeates

Tightening washers are what they sound like. Axles, moving parts, bearings, pins, and rotating components can all be found in machines, appliances, power tools, transportation vehicles, and recreational equipment.

Shaft movement or axial load is supported by this device, which also prevents movement of the shaft. As an added benefit, it gives it a place to rest.


Tightening washers are what they sound like. Inventing a wheel is a necessary step. This flat-shaped bearing helps to prevent the sideways movement of wheels on axles by using a flat bearing. There is no axial or thrust load on the bearing that handles radial loads, like roller bearings or bushings. When it turns a corner, the typical axial or sideways loads occur. In addition, the vehicle’s curved exterior causes it to veer sideways.

What Is a Thrust Washer? | It Still Runs

Other uses include water wheels, grain mills, rotary drills, and turntables in which the central movement has both axial and radial forces that compete. These thrust bearings should be installed on all propeller shafts, from the largest to the smallest. In this way, the spinning propeller’s axial and linear propulsion forces are resolved.


For the greatest maintenance, performance, and pricing, a combination of different materials is used to create thrust washers. Oilite washers, which are made of a porous bronze substance, are commonly used in applications involving hardened and steel shafts. It contains more than a third of its weight in oil. Thus, Oilite is self-lubricating.

Stainless steel and other alloys can be produced using the thrust washer, as well as hardened steel and bronze. High-temperature applications can even make thrust washers from graphite. Light loads and slow speeds are required when working with plastic.

Water-lubricated bearings benefit from the usage of lignum vitae and rubber. Manufacturers of thrust washers use uniform thicknesses regardless of the diameter of the outside or inside of the washer. Parallelism and flatness, heat treatment, surface polish, passivating, plating, and through-hardness are all important factors.


A grub screw or dowel pin fixes the thrust washer in the housing recess, preventing it from rotating. The heads of screws or nails penetrate the sliding surface by 0.3 millimeters. As a result, there should be support accessible throughout the thrust washer.

Thrust Washers explained - YouTube


Thrust washer standards are published and maintained by a variety of international and national organizations. The ISO, for example, maintains Standard 3031, which covers the thrust washer’s boundary tolerances and dimensions. Standardized testing for thrust washer lubrication can be supported by the American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM). For the treatment of stainless steel thrust washers and steel raw material, the SAE also maintains AMS-H-6875.

Common Applications

All electric motor-powered appliances, such as washing machines, have a single thrust washer. The endplay, or axial displacement, is its primary function. A single thrust washer is used on the propeller shaft in both inboard and outboard boats. Afterwards, it converts the axial thrust of the propeller into forward and reverse motion. Stiffness dampers and weight-bearing thrust washers are found in all types of machinery.


The thrust washers are integrated into the shaft sleeve bearings, which are commonly referred to as flanged sleeve bearings. The axial and radial forces in an electric motor are resolved by one on the end of the motor shaft.

Another variant on the usual thrust washer is to use many in series if the maximum velocity or Vmax in the RPM exceeds the typical sliding bearing specification.

Using a viscous fluid, such as heavy oil or silicone, on the thrust washer enhances the thrust by adding this damping function. Washer performance is improved because of this, which also serves as a dynamic brake by absorbing rotating vibration.

What is a thrust washer?

When a revolving surface comes into contact with a stationary component, a flat washer called a thrust washer is required. They stabilize a shaft’s axial load or side-to-side motion and prevent it from moving along the shaft. Using a thrust washer, a bearing can be supported on a flat surface. They are designed to withstand the rigors of heavy-duty use.

Where are thrust washers used?

Axle assemblies, motors, transmissions, pumps and winches are all examples of high-wear applications where they are used. Wear surfaces can be used in a wide range of applications.

What materials are thrust washers manufactured from?

Material for a thrust washer is chosen by the intended use. When it comes to choosing a material, speed, load, and temperature all play a role. Many different materials can be used to make thrust washers such as plastic, stainless steel and graphite. Low and high carbon steel are the primary materials for thrust washers. Case hardening or through hardening are both options for carbon steel.

AMG engineers can help you choose the best cost-effective materials and production processes to meet the needs of both you and your customers, no matter what your application is. The best way to help your customers is to get in touch with AMG immediately.

Crankshaft in the Thrust Washer

Stabilizing the crankshaft is done by thrust bearings, which locate and hold it in position. They have a predetermined amount of end play in a crankshaft. Engine block webbing can accommodate most of them. Main bearings have thrust washer integrated in them.

Transmission Thrust Washer - International Auto Parts - YouTube

It’s A Wrap!

You now have a clear idea of what a thrust washer is, thanks to the explanation provided above. From all of the thrust-bearing alternatives, this one is the simplest and most cost-effective to use. It’s just like any other mechanical system in that it operates best when well-lubricated and well-maintained. Check out our articles on what a washer is and how to use a washer for more information. Thank you for stopping by and reading this post!