If you have recently started running a manufacturing plant with large electrical motors, then you need to be concerned about the regular maintenance of these motors. This is especially true if you are concerned about costs, since the motors can cost tens of thousands of dollars. One of the best ways to ensure the motors are running properly is to invest in regular electrical motor tests that measure resistance, energy usage, and vibration. While these tests can alert you to potentially catastrophic motor failure well before a part breaks, so can some of the following signs. Make sure to look for these signs every day as you walk around your facility.
Rattling Or Banging Noises
An electrical motor test will generally be used to determine whether or not your motor is vibrating more than it should. This type of test is utilized to find out whether or not the bearings in the motor are about to fail. However, bearings will start to wear down over time and emit different vibration frequencies when they do so.
You may be informed by the testing professional that bearings are emitting a vibration frequency between 250 and 350 kilohertz. If you are told about the vibrations, then you will need to also look out for rattling or banging sounds so that bearings can be replaced in time. This will mean that bearing vibrations have increased substantially and have caused the motor casing as well as other parts within the device to start vibrating as well. This means that bearing failure is imminent.
A mechanic should be contacted immediately to replace bearings attached to the shaft and rotor assembly. Once this happens, make sure bearings are lubricated often to extend their life. You will need to utilize electric motor grease for this. The best grease is one that is viscous, consistent in composition, resistant to oxidation, and able to withstand a great deal of friction or wear. A polyurea grease is often ideal for use with electric motors. You should fill the bearing as well as the housing about halfway full. A tool called a bearing grease packer can help you with this.
Burning Rubber Smells
Electrical motor testing is also used to help determine resistance within the motor. If resistance seems high and electrical usage has increased, then this is one sign that the drive belt in the motor has started to deteriorate, crack, or stretch. You will also notice a smell of burning rubber when this starts to occur, because the belt will start to rub up against the pulleys attached to it. When this problem is detected, then it is time to have the belt changed.
Most electrical motors contain v-belts. These belts have v-shaped grooves that help to attach them to pulley systems so they do not slip. The belts must be aligned properly and have the right amount of tension for an electrical motor to perform in an efficient manner. This means it is wise to have an experienced mechanic change the v-belt when a new one is needed.
Once the v-belt is replaced, make sure that the rubber belt remains in good condition. The use of solvents and other cleaning chemicals to remove debris from the drive train, motor shaft, and other moving parts within the engine can damage the rubber belt. Try to stay away from these cleaners and instead change the air filter in the engine every few months.
Also, make sure to use dust control systems or air purifiers within your manufacturing facility so air intake openings do not pull dirt and debris into the motor. Also, belts can deteriorate if the engine is exposed to extreme temperature changes. Make sure your facility is heated so the engine is relatively warm upon start-up. As the engine warms up and starts working at full capacity, make sure a fan is blown across the engine to reduce excess heat.