Proper conveyor maintenance is important for a number of reasons, including both productivity and safety. In order to keep a conveyor system running smoothly, there are a number of different tips that can be followed on a daily, weekly, and even monthly basis. Regular checks should be carried out at least every few months, in order to identify problems before they can get out of hand. It is also important to keep all of the moving components well oiled or greased, and to verify the tension of the belt from time to time. Whenever any type of maintenance operation or check is performed, it should be logged in a detailed record book.
Conveyor belt systems are typically designed to operate continuously with relatively little maintenance, though some require more attention than others. The most important tip for conveyor maintenance is to draw up a detailed plan that includes regular checks and scheduled maintenance operations. By scheduling maintenance ahead of time, and keeping on top of little problems as they develop, it is often possible to avoid the costly downtime and even potential injuries that can result from unsafe conveyor systems.
There are a number of different checks that can be made on a daily or weekly basis, depending on whether or not the conveyor system is operated continuously. If the belt is shut down each day, or at the end of the week, that is a good opportunity to perform a basic inspection. Belt tension is one area to pay close attention to, since a loose belt can indicate a number of deeper problems. The belt itself should also be checked for wear, cracks, or tearing, and repaired if necessary. If there are any roller bearings that appear sluggish, or make excessive noise, that can also indicate an impending failure.
Depending on the materials the belt carries, there are also a number of other conveyor maintenance operations that should be performed on a daily basis. If the conveyor system carries loose, wet, or gummy substances, it is important to clean off the belt regularly. Some systems have scrapers and rollers that perform this function automatically, in which case those components need to be inspected and replaced from time to time as well.
Another very important conveyor maintenance operation is to regularly oil or grease all of the moving parts. Excessive lubrication can also be damaging in some instances, but allowing the moving parts of a conveyor system to run dry can cause catastrophic failures. That is why it is important to keep a detailed conveyor maintenance log, so that lubrication services and other operations can be tracked and scheduled.