Where Are SKF Bearings Made?

Who doesn’t want to install the best bearing in their vehicle? The SKF is one of the best and largest bearing manufacturers in the world. That said, it’s essential to know the brain behind the SKF bearings and where they are made.

The SKF manufacturers produce and distribute seals, bearings, lubricants and lubrication systems, mechatronics, maintenance, condition monitoring systems, power transmissions, and other related product and services on a global scale.

If you are contemplating where are SKF bearings made? Read on to find out. You’ll also learn their manufacturing processes, origin, applications, pros and cons, and how to identify a fake SKF product.

skf bearing company

What are the SKF Bearings and their Manufacturing process?

SKF bearing company is the largest bearing manufacturer in the world. They operate under two segments; automotive, which has a broad and concentrated customer base, and industrial, which has a fragmented customer base.

The SKF group develops, produces, markets, and distributes products, services, and solutions in the bearing and seals industry. Their product lineup includes specialty bearings, roller and ball bearings, linear motion products, sealing systems, tools for installing and removing bearings, and monitoring and measuring instruments.

A typical SKF bearing consists of an outer ring, inner ring, cages, and rollers or balls as rolling elements. The SKF bearings are capped with a shield or seal on both or one side. The ones capped on both sides are factory-filled with grease.

The bearings are made of hardened steel that can withstand the stress placed on them. To achieve this, the steel used in manufacturing SKF bearing rings must be 1000Cr6, containing 1.5% chromium and 1% carbon.

SKF bearings are produced with steel according to the SKF bearing specifications. The specs cover all aspects that will enable the bearing to stand the test of time. Based on their requirements, SKF uses high-temperature steel or stainless steel.

The rollers or balls transfer the load between the outer or inner bearing ring. SKF also uses the same stainless or high-temperature steel used in producing the inner and outer bearings to forge the rollers and balls.

However, SKF can produce their rolling elements with ceramic. Balls and rollers produced with ceramic are known as hybrids. And they are becoming more common in the bearing industry.

The primary purpose of the cage is to reduce the heat produced in the bearing when the vehicle is in motion. It also helps space the balls and rollers evenly to enhance load distribution. Cages are radially centered either on the outer ring, inner ring, or rolling elements. 

Rolling elements centered cages allow easy lubrication of the bearings. Cages centered on the rings offer more precise guidelines. They are primarily used when the bearings are installed on high-speed vehicles with inertia forces or high vibration levels.

SKF-bearing cages are mainly;

Machined metal cages: They are forged with light alloy, sometimes steel or brass.

Stamped metal cages: Stamped metal cages withstand high temperatures due to their lightweight. They are made with sheet brass or sheet steel.

Polymer cages: These types of cages are forged with polyetheretherketone (PEEK), polyamide 46 (PA46), polyamide 66 (PA66), or any other polymer materials.

Spin-type cages: Spin-type cages are forged with metal materials. It has low weight and can allow several rollers to be installed.

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skf products

SKF Bearing origin Explained

According to the SKF official website, SKF began its operation in 1907 by establishing an office in Gothenburg, Southwestern Sweden, with the initial capital and start-up project for bearing manufacturing.

In 1907, engineer Sven Wingqvist invited the first self-aligning bearing. A small component that solved big problems with misaligned machine rims, axles getting stuck, and issues that could lead to bearing failure or worst. By understanding the challenges of the factory, Sven was able to find the right solution. And his introduction of the SKF bearing revolutionalizes the bearing industry.

Today, SKF bearing company has 11 processing plants in Sweden. Aside from these 11 SKF Sweden processing plants, there are 61 other plants located in various countries of the world. Processing plants in different SKF locations produces bearings of the same high-quality level.

The plants are scattered in Sweden, Spain, South Africa, Netherlands, Mexico, Malaysia, South Korea, Japan, Italy, Indonesia, India, Germany, Finland, France, China, Brazil, Austria, and Argentina. Other countries include the United States and the United Kingdom.

However, to ensure efficient and high-quality performance, over 80% of the raw material for SKF bearings is supplied by the factory steelmaking plant in Sweden. So, if you purchase an SKF bearing not made in Sweden, don’t think it will not perform up to the mark. The Sweden SKF steelmaking plant supplies the same raw material to all SKF processing plants all over the world.

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Is SKF made in America?

Twenty-eight of the 140 SKF’s manufacturing sites are in the United States. This includes factories for seal production, rolling bearing production, and lubrication systems. The SKF bearings are manufactured in several countries, including America. If an SKF bearing is made in the States, the pack will say made in the US.

Which country made SKF bearings?

As explained earlier, SKF bearing is a Swedish seal, bearing, and lubricating system manufacturing company established in Gothenburg, Southwestern Sweden, in 1907. However, the company has several processing plants in different countries where they produce their products for the local markets.

SKF bearings Applications

The SKF bearings are used in different applications to enhance system performance. SKF understands that performance means different things to different people in different industries. They put these into consideration when manufacturing bearings for various applications. SKF bearings are used in railways, mining, metals, construction, agriculture, material handling, wind energy, forklifts, and trucks.

Pros of SKF bearing

Like other bearings in the market, SKF bearing has pros and cons. Here are the pros you should look at when considering buying a bearing for any application.

  • Low friction
  • Consistency of roller sizes and profiles
  • Rigid bearing application
  • Separable and interchangeable
  • Enhanced operational reliability.


  • Costlier than other brands
  • Requires regular maintenance, such as cleaning and lubrication
  • Not available in all sizes and designs.

How to check SKF’s original bearing?

SKF company has a Solid Gold Reputation in the bearing industry. But the only problem is that some people are faking the SKF products. This is a problem among several final customers. You don’t want to pay a premium price for an SKF bearing only to get a fake product. Thankfully, you can check if you got an original or fake SKF bearing in several ways.

  • Certain SKF products have a DMC code marked on the product or package. Scan the DMC code with your phone, and a response will appear on your screen if the DMC code is valid or not.
  • Examine the SKF carton appearance. The markings, castings, or printing of original products are usually clear. If the appearance is rough, you are likely dealing with a counterfeit product.
  • Examine the SKF product logo. On some regular parts, the manufacturers mark the carton with top gear, gear marks, and other assembly marks to help you install the product correctly. Do not buy the product if any of these markings are not present.

Final Words

In summary, whether you are asking where are SKF wheel bearings made or where are all their bearings made, all SKF bearings are made in their processing plants across different countries. The bearing pack will always indicate where the bearing is made.

For instance, if a certain SKF bearing is manufactured in one of the SKF processing plants in India, the product pack will indicate made in India. Rest assured, SKF India bearings and the ones produced in other countries have the same high quality.

Osuagwu Solomon

Osuagwu Solomon is a certified mechanic with over a decade of experience in the mechanic garage, and he has over five years of experience in the writing industry. He started writing automotive articles to share his garage experience with car enthusiasts and armature mechanics. If he is not in the garage fixing challenging mechanical problems, he is writing automotive repair guides, buyer’s guides, and car and tools comparisons.

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