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Explaining Heat Damage on Bearings

Bearings are a consistently used component in machines, irrespective of the machine’s size, structural and functional complexity and its usage. Whether we are talking about a simple home appliance or a large and complicated machine used in the industry, bearings are essential for ensuring the proper functioning of machines everywhere.

However, the function and purpose of bearings remain same across all fields, which is to enable machine components to move and rotate at the required rate. Hence, bearings are some of the most important components used in a machine and are vital for ensuring that a machine remains adequately operational. This is the reason why these are to be properly protected against any potential harm and damage.

There are various external and internal factors that can affect the proper functioning of bearings, one of the most common and dominant one being heat and temperature. Though, considering the amount of heat and friction that bearings are subjected to, these are designed and manufactured to withstand significant levels of high temperatures and friction, but you may still need to take all the necessary measures for heat prevention to increase the life of bearings in your machines.

There are various lubricants available which you may consider applying on bearings, which will not only increase their lifespan but may also lead towards improving their performance. Greasing the bearings with these lubricants, you may effectively add to their ability to withstand heat and work more efficiently. These lubricants are heat tested and can protect bearings against heat and high temperatures for an extensive period. However, once the temperature exceeds the threshold level, the lubricants may no more be effective for protecting bearings against heat and the bearings might begin to underperform or show signs of damage.

A bearing when first shows symptoms of failure as a consequence of excessive heat exposure is left with the active work efficiency of only 20%. Though, the consequent decrease in the work efficiency of a damaged bearing is a result of combined effects of friction, heat and other forces, but heat is the most potent factor leading to bearing failure. Hence, you constantly need to monitor the exposure of bearing to heat so that you may take adequate measures as soon as the symptoms of heat damage start showing.

Bearings are linked with heat sensors which start vibrating when a bearing is exposed to excessively high temperature. The vibration of heat sensors signifies that a bearing is very close to failure. Once the temperature exceeds the threshold level and lubricants are rendered ineffective, the damage to the bearings occurs at a very fast pace.

Once the heat sensors start vibrating, the bearing’s lifespan and efficiency further reduces by 10%. This is indicated by the emission of a ringing noise by the bearing. The easily distinguishable, alarming ringing noise is a warning that a bearing is about to fail. This is followed by an increase in the vibration of heat sensors and ringing noise, as the bearing further nears the failure.

Ultimately, the generation of other peculiar sounds, along with the distinctive ringing noise, suggests that you bearing is damaged permanently due to heat and needs replacement.         

   

Previous article Importance of Fitting for Bearings
Next article Bearing Seal Maintenance

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