Gear Up: Here’s what to Look for when Buying a Gear Motor
As U.S manufacturing comprises around $2.3 trillion in our economy, companies need to be using efficient tools to stay competitive. When seeking out the perfect gear motor, you need to get one that’s top of the line to perform flawlessly over and over.
Looking into every component of your motor ensures that you have something that’s built last for years.
Here are five things you have to look for in your next motor purchase.
1. Check the Efficiency
When you’re looking at gear motors, check out whether or not high-efficiency is available. They typically come rated with IE3 or in NEMA Premium. High-efficiency motors virtually eliminate downtime, giving you more of what you’re looking for in a motor.
You’ll recoup how much you invested in the motor pretty quickly. Older and less efficient motors end up turning into a black hole for your company’s profits. You’ll pay tremendous costs over time if you start using less efficient motors.
High-efficiency motors are great because they run much cooler than standard motors. The average motor gets pretty hot which then damages the item internally. This damage ends up leading to serious costs because of stress that the motor endures.
Over time, the winding gets bent out of shape. High-performing motors don’t have this issue since they have insulation that keeps the parts from being exposed to high temperatures.
You get some installation flexibility with high-efficiency motors because of their electrical capabilities. They’re easy to use without adding an adjustable speed drive. This means that your system is totally efficient as it uses just the current that it needs for each application.
That plus the lack of injuries from overheated motors and parts is enough for most people who work with gear motors on a daily basis to call for high-efficiency.
2. Look at Gearbox Energy Efficiency
When you’re looking at the gearbox connected to your motor, consider how efficient it is. While most material handling and conveyor belt applications rely on worm gears, there are some alternatives that add efficiency. Hypoid gearing ensures that you get more than 85% efficiency no matter what speed your gear is set to.
Inefficient worm gear motors don’t need to be what you rely on for your application with a motor. Try replacing your worm gear with a hypoid motor to get the same amount of torque with smaller motor power.
Since worm gears are pretty inefficient at slower speeds, then alternatives ensure that you get what you’re looking for. As your input slows or your RPMs reduce, you’ll find that worm gears slow down in ways that hypoids don’t.
In fact, hypoid gears get more efficient when you take the RPMs down. They’re able to be used with VRDs. Use with VRDs ensures they’re more effective as you transmit power at super slow speeds.
Since maximizing installation is a must, you get more out of gearboxes when you choose hollow bore. You’ll get to mount it directly on your machine. Instead of digging around for the tools, skip the chain and sprocket when you choose a hollow bore gearbox.
3. Look for Good Grease
Great grease is hard to find and when it comes to your motor, you need to use the highest grade around. High-grade grease should fill your motor and get to every part of its structure. This ensures that it lasts as long as possible.
When you install a motor with the best grease around, it means you need very little maintenance. There’s also less downtime to worry about.
A gear motor that’s got all the grease it needs enhances your installation flexibility. It won’t require breathers, meaning installation is a breeze. Mount it in any direction you’d like without you having to deal with finding the perfect mounting position up front.
4. Shaft Seals Matter
Shaft seals are another tool to combat downtime. While dual lip seals are useful for some people who work with motors, triple lip shaft seals offer you even more. They ensure that you don’t lose lubrication and that you keep dust out of your gearbox.
Dust is harmful to motors and results in grease contamination. This is one of the key factors that cause bearings and seals to fail eventually. When bearings and seals fail while your motor is in the middle of doing its work, you risk losing money or even injury.
When the lubricant is sealed inside, it prevents excessive maintenance on your motor. When you don’t have to maintain your motor as often, you also have a safer motor. When a motor fails, it causes mistakes, injuries, or even spills that lead to a slip and fall accident on your site.
5. O-ring Seals
O-rings are another tool to help you lower the cost of maintaining your motor when you use quality o-rings, you have a better seal on your motor, which is another way to ensure that lubricant doesn’t leak out. All that lubricant ending up in the wrong place leads to unexpected problems.
O-rings also stand up longer than gaskets do. They’re usually placed on an internal connection where the gearbox case meets the cover. They’re not exposed to the elements and ensure a barrier between what should be in and what should be outside of the gearbox.
While your gaskets have a portion that is exposed to the elements, your o-rings aren’t and help to ensure that your motor is properly protected.
A Quality Gear Motor Lasts for Years
When seeking out the ideal gear motor, you need to find something that’s built to withstand a lot of abuse. Treat your motor well and it’ll provide quality service to you for as long as possible.
If you’re in the market for an air compressor to keep your parts clean, check out our latest guide.