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Common Maintenance of Stepper Motor

If you are worried about stepper motor maintenance, you have every right to be. Sometimes, these small negligences can cause big issues; the same is true for stepper motors. Discover the consequences of not paying attention to stepper motor maintenance.

January 25, 2024

Most stepper motor applications need high-accuracy control. When stepper motor maintenance difficulties arise, they may rapidly lower machine performance and output quality. If maintenance needs aren't detected early, they generate knock-on issues that could damage the motor. While repairs are made, downtime will rise. Let’s look at some of the results of not taking stepper motor maintenance seriously.


Breakdown of the Bearings

Stepper motors often have bearing degeneration as their primary issue. Wear and tear on the bearings and bearing race may lead to friction, reducing the accuracy of the machine's motion control and ultimately lowering its performance. If not detected promptly, Bearing failure may lead to further issues, including misalignment of the encoder and overheating, which we will address in the next section.

 

Vibration, friction, severe heat, and wear and tear are the most common causes of bearing failure. Unlubricated motor shafts, connection misalignments, or both might cause bearing difficulties. Bearing failure usually sounds like a warning. A "grumbling" or pitch change in industrial stepper motors' high-pitched sound may signal a problem. Bearing failure might also result from extreme vibration. A bearing problem might cause an encoder misalignment with the machine, resulting in an error message.

 

Bearing deterioration may lead to more significant concerns if not identified quickly. If the motor is kept running after the bearing fails, the rotors and magnets may damage or misalign the windings or core, causing significant damage.

 

High temperature and lubrication breakdown may cause bearing failure, which is as terrible as fusing them. The rotating motor's momentum will spin the outer race; thus, a sleeve must be manufactured to restrict the bearing housing from spinning with the shaft. This involves system disassembly.

 

While lubricating openings are included in certain industrial stepper motors, the majority of stepper motors are sealed. Greasing frequently and monitoring the lubricant's condition for hardening or burning spots are necessary. To fix a stepper motor bearing, we take the motor apart and clean it well so that we may examine the bearing unit in detail.

 

Investing in high-quality bearings for the industrial stepper motor is an easy way to extend its service life. We also provide high-speed and high-load bearings, which are better equipped to handle the friction and torque demands of certain applications.

Maintenance of Servo Motor

Damaged Rotor

Problems with the rotor might also lead to vibration. The rotor's balancing weights might break loose with time and excessive heat, which can cause vibration. A balancing machine can precisely add weight to a rotor until it is evenly distributed, eliminating vibrations produced by an unbalanced rotor.  

 

Industrial stepper motors may seem sturdy, but the magnets within the rotor are fragile and need special handling without stepper motor maintenance. If the magnet is fractured, the stepper motor will spin unsteadily or experience speed fluctuations. A total motor lockup is the worst-case scenario.

 

Detecting them early, generally by feeling vibrations or a temperature rise, and then replacing the magnets is crucial. Careful handling of a motor is also required during installation and maintenance.


stepper motor

Heat Exhaustion

When an industrial stepper motor becomes too hot, the insulation between its core and brass windings might break, leading to an earth fault. This happens because of not doing stepper motor maintenance. Damage to the motor's magnets, bearing breakdown, or an encoder defect are all possible outcomes when the issue reaches this level, accelerating temperature growth.

 

Having the right input is crucial because overheating may occur when the voltage or frequency is too high. Maximizing airflow around industrial stepper motors is often necessary due to their small size, which means they do not have a large surface area from which heat may be dissipated. Similarly, you should clean them often since dirt and dust may trap heat.

 

A sensor or careful manual examination, while being careful to avoid injury, might identify overheating. Like many other maintenance issues with industrial stepper motors, the solution to overheating is cause-specific, meaning that it might be anything from an overload to bearing difficulties. Recognizing overheating promptly is crucial since the damage it causes, even after repairs, might increase the likelihood of future overheating incidents in the engine.


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