A proper inspection of sheaves during operation will maximize the efficiency of the drive system. Using of a sheave gauge, you can find determine when it is time to replace a sheave. In order to maintain efficiency, sheaves should be replaced once 1/32″ of wear is visible.
Excessively worn sheaves can significantly increase the cost of operation. A 5% loss in efficiency due to belt slippage of a 30 HP drive that operates 7 days a week 24/7 at 12 cents a kilowatt hour translated to an excess of $ 1,175 more a year (22.37 KW * 24 hours * 365 days * 5% of loss).
Signs of Worn Grooves
- For systems with more than one belt, sometimes one or more belt will run lower in the drive than the others. This is called differential driving. When some of the belts run with slack while others have the proper tension, those belts will wear prematurely and decrease overall performance.
- A shinny groove at the bottom of the sheave or at the bottom of the belt could indicate that the belt or the sheave are very worn. This situation is called bottoming and this will immediately affect the efficiency of the system and the durability of the belts.