How to extend the service life of bearings


There are many reasons for bearing failure, but the most common are incorrect use, pollution, improper use of lubricants, damage during installation or handling, and installation errors. Diagnosing the cause of failure is not difficult, because the cause of bearing failure can be determined based on the traces left on the bearing.

Reasons for bearing failure

About 40% of the failure of ball bearings is caused by dust, dirt, debris pollution and corrosion. Pollution is usually caused by improper use and bad use environment, it can also cause torque and noise problems. Bearing failures caused by the environment and pollution can be prevented, and a simple visual inspection can determine the cause of such failures.

Through the analysis after failure, you can know which aspects of the bearing that has failed or will fail. Understanding the mechanisms of failure such as erosion and fatigue failure can help eliminate the root cause of the problem.

As long as the use and installation are reasonable, the erosion of the bearing is easily avoided. The characteristic of erosion is that there are indentations on the bearing ring raceway raceway caused by impact load or incorrect installation. Corrosion usually occurs when the load exceeds the yield limit of the material. If the installation is not correct so that a load traverses the bearing ring, it will also corrode. The pressure pits on the bearing ring will also generate noise, vibration and additional torque.

A similar defect is the elliptical indentation caused by the vibration of the ball between the bearing rings when the bearing is not rotating. This damage is called low-load vibration erosion. This damage can occur in both equipment in transit and equipment that still vibrates when not in operation. In addition, the debris generated by low-load vibration erosion acts like an umbilical grain, which will further damage the bearing. Unlike ablation, the characteristics of low-load vibration erosion are usually due to micro-vibration damage. Corrosion will produce light red in the lubricant.

The premature fatigue failure of the material is caused by excessive preload after heavy load. If these conditions are unavoidable, the bearing life should be carefully calculated to develop a maintenance plan.

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