What can I do to Minimise Motor Failure?

51% of Motor Failures are bearing related

A Huge 51% of Motor Failures are bearing related, with the top three bearing related issues being:

  • Insufficient Lubrication
  • Excessive Greasing
  • Wrong Lubricants

Insufficient Lubrication

Re-greaseable bearings need regular maintenance, as a guide you should re-grease approximately every 2,000 hours or three months.  You can refer to your manufacturer’s operation and maintenance annual for specific re-lubrication intervals for your motor. You can also get these details on your motor plate.

Excessive Greasing

Excessive greasing can overheat bearings and lead to failure.  To prevent this from happening:

  • Ensure grease relief valves are open during the re-greasing process to allow excess grease to purge from the bearing housing
  • A bearing lip seal will typically fail at 500 psi, yet grease guns can produce up to 1,500 psi
  • Add each shot of grease slowly to avoid pressure build-up
  • Always make sure relief valves are cleaned out of any dirt or hardened grease
  • Remove the grease outlet plug or open outlet valve where fitted
  • Slowly pump grease into the bearings every few seconds (avoid quick-lever actions as pressure will build and damage seals)
  • Discontinue greasing if any abnormal back pressure is felt

Wrong Lubricant

Always check you are using the right grade or type of grease.

When re-greasing, use only special ball bearing grease with the following properties:

  • Good quality grease with lithium complex soap and mineral or PAO-oil
  • Base oil viscosity 100-160 cST at 40°C
  • Consistency NLGI grade 1.5 – 3
  • Temperature range -30°C –  +120°C, continuously

You should not mix different types of grease.  Incompatible lubricants may cause bearing damage.

Are there any specific greases I need to use in specific applications?

Yes, there are specific greases you need to use for say high temperatures or hygienic applications. Refer to the lubricants section of your motor operation manual.

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