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Some Tips For Preventing Motor Failure

Some-Tips-For-Preventing-Motor-FailureIndustrial motors are built to withstand industrial conditions. Failures should be few and far between. Quite often, one small change is all that’s needed at a given facility to slash the failure rate. Sometimes, many changes are needed. What does your facility need?

Compare these tips to your current practices:

  • Select the correct motor for the application. Horsepower is only one consideration. Others include insulation temperature rating, NEMA Design (e.g., Design B versus Design D), and how it’s enclosed.
  • Ensure the motor base and pedestal are substantial enough.
  • Install a soft starter or a variable frequency drive with the soft start feature (for any critical motor, but also consider motors that are not critical especially if they are costly to replace).
  • To your PMs, add taking voltage measurements for the purpose of calculating voltage imbalance. Try to reduce it to well below the recommended 2%.
  • Install power factor correction at the motor. But if the motor has a VFD, consult the manufacturer before implementing PF correction. Don’t just add PF correction capacitors to a VFD system; the VFD might not be compatible.
  • Set up a formal training program for motor lubrication and restrict motor lubrication work to those qualified to perform it.

Also, manually perform the following tests regularly and/or install monitoring:

  • Vibration testing.
  • Insulation resistance (IR) testing; trend the test results.
  • Bearing temperatures. For critical motors, a combination of thermography and temperature monitoring.

Source: Mark Lamendola | Mindconnection