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Ceramic bearings are 25% harder than conventional stainless steel bearings. Because of this, ceramic bearings are highly resistant to damage from debris entering the turbine. Ceramic bearings are also 50% lighter than stainless steel. Because they are just half the weight, the balls spin with less friction in the bearing retainer. Lower friction results in quieter and cooler operation, especially at high speed, these factors are responsible for significantly extending bearing life.


We use Ceramic Bearings in every High-Speed Overhaul for only $99!

When it comes to bearing selection, it does not get much more challenging than choosing a bearing for a high-speed dental handpiece.  As well as having to withstand the harsh operating environment in which the bearings are constantly bombarded with debris, the latest dental handpiece turbines typically have to operate at extremely high speeds of over 400,000 RPM.  Bearings also have to endure repeated chemical or steam sterilisation cycles, which can strip away bearing lubricant.
Ceramic Bearings Vs. Stainless Steel

Ceramic bearings, lube free turbines, or stainless steel?

We are asked this question often, so lets explore this issue now. 

While ceramic bearings certainly have unmatched anti-friction characteristics, there is still no substitution for regular handpiece lubrication. This helps flush debris from inside handpiece head.  

When the handpiece is stopped, a slight negative pressure is

created as the turbine winds down. This suction draws debris

up the bur shaft and into the head. Ceramic, tungsten,

stainless steel, titanium, uranium, or kryptonite - it doesn't matter.

Damage will take place if too much debris is allowed to remain in handpiece head. Another point to consider is that some manufacturers tend to warranty the lube type turbines a bit longer. That would seem to indicate that manufacturers expect turbines to last longer if you lubricate them, regardless of materials. 

Whether you prefer the lube free dental turbines, or those which require daily lubrication, there is maintenance involved to ensure handpiece and turbine longevity. Remember, clean is better. 

For more information, check out our maintenance tips on this web site or give us a call, we would be happy to talk to you and answer any questions you may have.



Ceramic Bearing Properties