4 Conveyor Belt Problems Encountered by the Material Handling Industry

The advent of conveyor belts brought ease in industrial processing with increased efficiency and reduction in the labor requirements, which in turn improved safety and streamlined production. Usage of conveyor belts has become a standard for moving products and materials in every industry imaginable.

While the primary goal of conveyor belts is to transport products and material throughout a facility, this is impossible without the proper implementation of the handling system. The traditional conveyor belt systems that have been deployed in the industries can show a sign of wear and tear, causing inconvenience. Besides, if not looked after carefully, they can experience occasional problems that can wreak havoc on the production line. Therefore, if your facility has some old and traditional conveyor systems installed, it is time to buy new flexible conveyor belts that can serve the purpose.

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To replace the old conveyor systems, here are some problems mentioned below that can be suspected when working with the conveyors-

1) Carrybacks or Blockage-

The material that resides on the belt after discharge is called the Carryback. The main purpose of using conveyor belts is to transport the material efficiently from one location to another, but sometimes the blockage can occur because the transported parcels catch on the sharp edges, undergo rigid directional changes to pass along the corroded chute surface only to cause a build-up. Not only it creates a mess but also degrades components of rollers, idlers, and pulleys, causing excessive wear. This can seize the production at a halt.

Prevention- Install belt cleaners at both the head and tail pulley to prevent dislodging of any material.

2) Conveyor Belt Mistracking-

The process of aligning and managing a belt to maintain a specific path is known as conveyor belt tracking. The strap can drift due to many factors, leading to mistracking. Mistracking can cause foreseen downtime, improper idler spacing, worn rollers, belt damage, product damage, and maintenance troubleshooting issues.

Prevention- Conveyor belts can fall out of their perfect alignment due to daily wear and tear; therefore, routine inspection of conveyor belt alignment and the associated components helps to prevent mistracking.

3) Belt Slippage-

Conveyor belts can experience belt slippage that typically occurs around a head pulley. A high or a low tension around the head pulley can cause an impact on the performance because the head pulley wears down. This happens because there is not an adequate amount of traction to grip the belt that leads to excessive stretching, audible squeals, and conveyance slippage to occur. It causes process upsets and prevents the right amount of material from being conveyed. Belt slippage can result in the removal of build-up, time-consuming maintenance and reconfiguring tension requirements.

Prevention- Maintaining an adequate belt tension can reduce slips, or you can install a snub pulley to increase the arc between the belt and pulley to improve friction between the two.

4) Seized Rollers-

Many industries have deployed the machinery from the time they started operating the business. Therefore, many of these industries are using traditionally constructed conveyor belts made up of metallic components like steel. When the rollers of the conveyor built from steel seize up, they develop sharp edges which cause the belt to mistrack unequally along the centre line. Not only does it damage the belt but also poses a threat to the safety of the working environment and damage the products being transported. If the complete belt failure occurs, there is a need to shut the systems for a long time until the repairs are made.

Prevention- Install conveyor belts of the latest build that requires low maintenance and increase the work efficiency.