Belt conveyor systems are excellent for regulating workforce hours and meeting customer demands in a timely fashion. However, just how inherent these benefits are to your organization has everything to do with how well you maintain the belt. A conveyor system that is operating correctly is going to perform better than one that is not.
Learn what measures to take to keep the conveyor system running efficiently.
The heart of a conveyor system is its belt. A damaged and worn belt will affect the overall operation of the unit. Inspect the condition of the belt by running periodic load-free cycles so that you can get a clear view of the belt. The main things to look for are large rips or tears because these imperfections signal a belt that is long past its expiration period.
To keep the belt in motion, these systems operate by dispersing a steady amount of tension throughout the belt. A large tear or rip disrupts the tension, putting undue pressure on the belt sections that surround the hole. This will make failure inevitable. It's important to note that small holes are often repairable, but significant damage signals a belt in need of replacement.
Having extra belts on hand for quick replacement keeps your operation moving with minimal disturbance when belts develop holes, fraying or other signs of damage. Just make sure you're storing replacement belts the proper way.
Always avoid storing a belt directly on any surface, including a floor or storage shelf because rough spots on a shelf, such as a loose or raised screw, can cause a puncture. It might not be immediately visible, but after a few cycles, the belt will form a large hole.
Keep belts wrapped in a protective material or hang them. Store belts in a climate-controlled area because high heat and humidity levels can also cause damage.
Make it a habit to include belt cleaning as part of your routine. Food and other material spills send particles traveling throughout the conveyor system. In excessive amounts, this buildup could reduce some of the tension in the belt or push it off the track. With chemical spills, the harsh ingredients can cause the belt to deteriorate, leading to premature failure.
At the first sign of a spill, stop the conveyor and promptly clean it. Afterward, ensure the belt is dry before restarting operation. Any moisture on the belt will travel to other areas of the system where it can increase the risk for corrosion development and possible electrical damage. You should also only use cleaners approved for use on conveyor belts.
A leading reason for belt damage is friction caused by loads that are too heavy. To put this in better perspective, consider a wheeled cart. Say you place an object on the cart that exceeds its weight capacity. As you push the cart along, you'll hear the wheels grinding into the ground below. This noise is the result of the friction caused by the extra weight. Continue to use the cart in this manner, and the wheels will fail.
When you transport items that exceed a belt's rating, this creates friction that makes it harder for the belt to rotate. Not only does this mean an increased risk of damage to the belt, but the overall system must work harder as well, leading to accelerated wear and higher operating costs. Ensure you know the system's capacity rating.
A Plus Industrial Installation is standing by to ensure you're paired with the right type of conveyor system, to handle all your installation needs and to provide you with valuable operating tips. Get the help you need to keep your conveyor system in motion