16 tips to extend the belt lifetime

16 tips to extend the belt lifetime

The lifetime and performance of a belt can be significantly extended through simple maintenance and preventative care. In today’s blog I will discuss how you can best lengthen productivity through easy upkeep, alteration and repair.

Storage

  • Belts should preferably be stored in their original packaging
  • The belts should be protected against damage, contamination, moisture, extreme temperatures and UV light. Ideally, they should be stored in a dark room or in an opaque plastic wrap which will also protect the belt against dust and other contaminants. Products containing polyamide should always be wrapped in airtight material to avoid undesirable absorption of humidity or drying out.

Checking the conveyor and assemble the new belt

  • Ensure that all parts of the installation in contact with the belt are clean and free from oil, grease and dirt, etc.
  • Ascertain that all pulleys, rollers and nosebars are set axially parallel and exactly at right angles to the belt’s running direction. Also, ensure that the supporting structure is not distorted and is accurately aligned on all planes.
  • Check that the installation’s dimensions are correct. The best method is to measure across the diagonals
  • The tensioning device must be fixed on the lowest setting of the take-up
  • Check and/or replace the drum lagging on the drive
  • Make sure not to press any kinks into the belt. The belt ends must be protected from soiling and damage and must not be twisted or kinked at any time during assembly.

First-time tensioning

  • It is important to make sure that the driving pulley can drive the belt without slipping even under maximum load. Therefore, the correct tensioning procedure and the observation of a minimal initial elongation are important.
  • Minimum initial elongation for belts with Polyester fabric is 0,3% and for belts with Polyamide fabric, it is 0,5%. Attention: in case of a conveyor belt with a knife-edge transfer, stretch the belt just enough so that it does not slip on the driving drum.

Belt alignment

  • Since the conveyor belt is following the alignment of the structure and components on which it is operating, it is essential that the conveyor itself is accurately aligned and that the belt is properly fitted by trained personnel.
  • Carry out adjustments in small steps, working on only one pulley at a time. Adjustments to multiple pulleys or rollers can adversely affect the tracking characteristics of the belt, causing the system to become unstable and vary under different operating conditions.
  • After each adjustment, allow the belt to rotate a few times to position itself to the new alignment before making any further corrections
  • Prevent rubbing of the belt edge against the installation which may lead to irreparable damage

Cleaning

  • It is important that all parts of the installation which come into contact with the belt are kept as clean as possible. Oil, grease, moisture, rust, dirt, traces of conveyed products, etc. on pulleys, rollers, slider beds and other parts of the installation in contact with the belt may cause operational and belt performance problems and will certainly shorten belt service life.
  • A few general points on the cleaning of synthetic conveyor belts:
    • Cleaning should, wherever and whenever possible, be carried out when the installation is at rest. This is a matter of safety.
    • In the case of light dirt deposits (dust, etc.), clean with a soft cloth; dry or moistened with cold or warm water.
    • Oily, or greasy soiling can be removed with hot water and a general, non-abrasive household detergent (low foaming types can aid the rinsing process).
    • Spot cleaning can be performed via a damp rag application of a suitable solvent.
    • Heavy soiling can be removed by scrubbing with hot soapy water or washing with a mild solvent.

These straightforward maintenance methods can make a drastic difference in the life of your belt and save you countless hours of labor and unnecessary delay. If you have any questions or concerns about how to best care for your belt, please don’t hesitate to contact us.

Please download our Fabric Conveyor Belts Installation and Maintenance Guide (6040) for more information.

2017 June 1  |  Posted by

René Grevengoed is an Application Engineer who has worked at Habasit in the Netherlands since 1996. He speaks native Dutch and he is also fluent in English. Grevengoed specializes in general conveying, including fabric conveyor and power transmission belts. His expertise is applicable in several industries, including food, material handling, as well as printing and paper applications. Grevengoed’s experience began in workshops and onsite fittings where he was able to acquire the necessary special skills in order to progress to where he is today.