1433 Conveyor Systems

Conveyor belts, in-floor towlines, and similar chain- or belt-driven equipment have three important areas where proper maintenance can save energy and money. These are in controls, drive motors and gear, and the actual moving belt or line.

Conveyor Controls

One way to save energy on controls is to install and maintain controls that cause the conveyor to move only when there is material to be moved. This measure has saved significant amounts of energy in coal mines and in pneumatic conveying systems, for example, where in one case the total energy consumed was reduced by 90%. The additional wear and tear on starting motors was not found to be significant when these motors were maintained according to the original procedures specified at the time of purchase of the equipment. Adding a load-related starting control saves on conveyor wear and on each part of the equipment that is no longer operating continuously.

Drive Motors and Gears

Drive motors should be checked regularly using the Tornberg procedure for motors described in Section 14.1.1. When the motor is being inspected, the rest of the driving gear should also be inspected, with the details being dependent upon the power transmission system being used by the conveyor.

Conveyor Belts or Lines

The belt, towline, or other equipment used to move the material should be checked regularly. The kinds of problem to include in the inspection are worn belts; noisy rollers, indicating possible bearing problems; belts that are too tight or too loose; and any place that shows conspicuous wear. Such an inspection should be performed regularly and coupled with regular lubrication of appropriate points. Manufacturing specifications should be consulted as a source for specific lubrication directions for all conveying equipment.

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