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Cleaning the Cleaners – A healthy Conveyor System begins and ends with Cleaning and Maintenance

Written by Stein, M. edited by mhd on 30. Apr. 2020
Belt conveyors are an integral part of almost any plant in the base materials industries. Their function is of paramount importance for the entire plants. Following you’ll find the “Why’s” and “How to’s” for an effective conveying plant.
In aggregates business, for example, equipment is subjected to harsh materials and weather. (Pictures: © Flexco)
In aggregates business, for example, equipment is subjected to harsh materials and weather. (Pictures: © Flexco)

When you buy a product, you expect it to perform as well on day 365 as it did on the first day you installed it. You don’t have time to spend wondering if or when it will break, and you certainly don’t have time to buy a new one. The truth is that maintenance can make all the difference with equipment, and this is especially true with belt conveyor cleaners. Belt cleaners are an important part of keeping systems clear and running. But while the cleaners are busy maintaining your belt, what are you doing to keep your cleaners running smoothly?

Maintaining Belt Cleaners

Over the years, advances in belt cleaner technology have not only made them easier to use, but also easier to maintain. Maintaining cleaners enhances the performance of the actual cleaner as well as the other components in your system. Keeping an eye on the cleaners also extends the life of the cleaners, the belt, and your splices. Properly maintained cleaners are less likely to cause damage to belts and fasteners in comparison to cleaners that are installed and ignored.

Your Cleaners, Your Budget

Cleaning the Cleaners – A healthy Conveyor System begins and ends with Cleaning and Maintenance – Carryback costs can affect your overall budget multiple times. Well-maintained belt cleaners help reduce carryback significantly.

Carryback costs can affect your overall budget multiple times. Well-maintained belt cleaners help reduce carryback significantly.
Carryback costs can affect your overall budget multiple times. Well-maintained belt cleaners help reduce carryback significantly.

Carryback costs can affect your overall budget multiple times. Well-maintained belt cleaners help reduce carryback significantly.
You would be hard-pressed to find a business in the world that isn’t trying to cut costs in this economy. That’s why it’s more important than ever to maintain the systems you already have. There simply isn’t money in the budget to replace something if it breaks, or time to withstand a major shut-down that could have been prevented.

Carryback costs, for example, can affect your overall budget multiple times. Maintenance costs, along with safety costs top the list, but the cost of the material wasted and the housekeeping costs to remove the material can also be pricey. CEMA (Conveyor Equipment Manufacturers’ Association) conservatively estimates carryback to be as high as three tons per week, given a 60-inch-wide belt traveling at 800 feet per minute. Over the course of a full year, that adds up to 150 tons of material for only one belt.

Poor belt cleaning also contributes to after-the-fact maintenance costs related to belting, pulleys, idlers, etc. While good maintenance and quality replacement parts cost a little more up front, they can be worth it in the long run.

Maintaining Your Cleaners

When approaching cleaner maintenance, there are three simple principles to remember: Clean It, Inspect It, Tension It.

Clean It – It may sound obvious, but the first rule of thumb with cleaners is to remove any debris from the blade and tension springs. Tensioners can’t do their jobs with debris stuck in them and removing material build up from blades will make them much more effective. Plus, a dirt free cleaner is much easier to inspect.

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