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December 15, 2021

Production increase during holidays: Prepare your conveyor belts

During the holidays, your business is likely to see some sort of production increase to help meet demand. Whether your company pushes out more products during the same period or you take on another shift, your conveyor system will be placed under additional stress during this time. Additional stress increases the change of breakage and equipment shutdown. Production downtime will put you behind schedule and, potentially, force you to cancel shipments and orders. This not only costs you money, but it may also lose you, long-term customers, as well. That is why you need to prepare your conveyor belts for the holiday rush. You also need to know basic conveyor belt problem solution methods, which will help you correct an issue quickly. Here is some guidance on basic conveyor belt problems and what to do if you encounter these situations.

Basic Conveyor Belt Problem Solution

Here are some basic conveyor belt problem solution methods that you can implement-

Prep Your Conveyor Belt

Preparing your conveyor belt system for the holidays is a three-prong approach. You need to do what you can to safeguard it, have equipment on hand to repair it, and know how to spot problems before they turn into disasters.

Regarding the prep work, it’s essential to perform your routine maintenance right before going into holiday production mode. This means not only cleaning it, but you’ll want to check rollers and replace any that are damaged, add lubrication to where this is needed, and also check the screws and other connections, tightening where required. You should also go over any torque requirements for the conveyor belt. Different rollers and pulley systems will have varying tension needs, and you will want to make sure all of the tension is at the necessary level. By performing your general maintenance practices before increasing production, you will potentially avoid a good number of problems that would otherwise arise.

Ordering Replacement Parts

You don’t want to be left with a damaged conveyor system, waiting for days (if not longer) for a replacement part to be delivered. Delivery times are longer than usual, which may mean you send someone out to drive across the state (or further) to pick up the replacement parts. Instead, order them now. You need to have replacement pulleys and rollers with you at all times. You’ll also want to have replacement screws and the lubricant used on your system. This way, if anything goes wrong and the production is forced to shut down due to damaged equipment, you will have the necessary replacement parts on hand. Sooner or later, you’ll need to use the replacement parts anyway, so you might as well have them on hand now.

Conveyor Belt Problems

Most of the conveyor belt issues you’ll run into have something to do with tracking and slipping. Understanding how to spot these conveyor belt problem solutions and making the necessary corrections will help prevent repair downtime and costly damage.

Mistracking might be the most common conveyor belt problem. If you notice some shifting in the belt, it means there is a mistracking issue. Even slight mistracking will eventually result in major problems. If you notice the belt drifting to one side, it means there’s likely either too much tension on the opposite side or not enough on the side it’s slipping towards. This may also be caused if contact pulleys and rollers are not level and squared off. By checking the tension and the level of the contact points the belt and rollers make, you will likely pinpoint the problem.

Tension issues can also lead to what is known as belt slippage. Belt slippage is when the belt actually slips, and there is not enough tension. While the conveyor will continue to function with mistracking (until either the belt or rollers seize up), a slipping belt will not be able to move because there simply isn’t any tension at all. It can also throw rollers and damage other parts of the conveyor belt. You need to inspect the rollers and conveyor belts throughout production continually. You’ll also want to perform regular inspections between shifts to ensure the belt and rollers are properly aligned with correction tension.

A blockage is a major concern, yet thankfully it is one you can easily avoid. Make sure you don’t send down too much product through the conveyor system at once. If the conveyor belt cannot handle the load, it will lead to blockages.

Seized rollers are another common issue. Over time, rollers will begin to wear down due to the added strain. During the holiday rush, you’ll either increase production or extend production periods, which will increase the chance of damage to the rollers. Contact rollers, where the roller and conveyor belt come into first contact, are under the greatest amount of tension, which means these rollers are more likely to seize up and become damaged faster. You’ll want to pay special attention to these, although do make sure to look over all the rollers when performing your routine maintenance and replace any rollers that are starting to wear down.

Cover All Your Conveyor Belt Needs

It doesn’t matter what kind of product you produce or even the quantity of what you put out; if your company runs into conveyor belt problems, it may result in all kinds of issues, both short term and long term, for your company. That is why you need to protect your business by performing several safeguards and implementing the above-mentioned conveyor belt problem solution. While you can execute many of the safeguards on your own, there will be times you’ll want to upgrade your equipment and order spare parts for your machinery. All of this is possible with the help of Gough Econ. So if you’re looking at ways to upgrade your current equipment or have questions about improving productivity and protecting the hardware you’re already using, contact the staff at Gough Econ today.

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