It’s no secret that the intensely hardworking crushing, conveying, and screening equipment in your material processing operation requires regular maintenance to remain reliable and optimally productive. But what are those maintenance “must dos” that maximize uptime and ultimately lead to longer service life expectancies? And how often should you be inspecting and changing wear parts on machinery?
Maintaining Rock Crushers
All rock crushers, especially the cone and jaw crushers commonly found in quarry operations, utilize steel crushing chamber liners fortified with the element manganese. The percentage of manganese in the steel depends upon the hardness of the material being processed and might look something like the following chart:
Due to abrasion and general wear from regular operations, these liners break down over time and need to be replaced on a regular basis.
In fact, changing out manganese (the industry short-hand term for replacing the crushing chamber liners) is one of the most important regular maintenance items that crushers require.
With regard to manganese changes in crushers, your goal is to maximize wear lifetime while not suffering huge production losses by waiting too long to make the change.
According to many industry resources, manganese changes should take place when you begin to experience a 10% decline in production. It is important to be sure that you have all of your replacement parts on hand before you begin the change process. Otherwise, you will be setting yourself up for excessive downtime, which can carry a dangerously high cost for your business.
Our parts department at Kemper Equipment offers a ROCK & STOCK program so a plant operator does not have to wait 2-3 weeks for wear parts. Kemper will stock parts for customers, then ship to the customer and charge them upon shipment. For more details, contact: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Other crusher maintenance priorities
It’s true that the way you operate your crushers will determine how often maintenance is needed, both in terms of regular manganese changes and in how often other wear parts will need to be replaced. On crushers, those other parts may include blow bars (on impact crushers), shoes and anvils, and wear plates, among others.
Checking oil and filters daily, and changing those out at manufacturer-recommended intervals is also of utmost importance. Like the car or truck that you drive every day, oil is the lifeblood of crushers!
Maintaining Screening Equipment
As we discussed in a previous post here on the blog, your screening equipment works hard to sort aggregate of different sizes so you can further reduce larger pieces while moving smaller pieces along the production line.
The nature of the work that screens perform during regular operation, which involves intense vibration of heavy material, is somewhat brutal and requires a lot of parts changes and maintenance. The main maintenance concern with screening equipment is regularly replacing screen media.
Screen media replacement
Depending on the types of panels you’re using for screening: wire cloth, urethane, or rubber, your time to replacement will vary. Additionally, proper screen media support and tensioning will help maximize your screen media’s life expectancy. Following your equipment manufacturer’s recommended replacement intervals for screen media will go a long way to assuring that you don’t wait too long and inadvertently damage support frames, screen hardware, or other components.
And, as with planned maintenance for all of your equipment, do not begin the process unless you have all of your screen replacement parts on hand.
Other screen maintenance priorities
Beyond replacing screen media, staying on top of machine oil changes is critical. Again, the manufacturer will be able to guide you on recommended change intervals, and how often you need to change oil will also be dependent on how you’re running your screens. Keeping material buildup from forming around moving parts on your screening equipment, for example, benefits your oil life by preventing abnormal contamination from occurring.
In fact, preventing accumulation of dust and stone from around the moving parts of your screen through daily cleaning practices will also help guard against unexpected part failures. Things like pivot motor bases, support springs, and the vibrating frame can easily be damaged by debris left behind on your screening equipment, so keep those screens clean!
When it comes to conveyors, your goal is to keep product moving, and that means keeping belts in prime working order. Belts should not need to be fully changed out unless excessive damage occurs from improper operation of the conveyor system.
With conveyor belts, many issues can be fixed by making repairs to the belt and adjusting machine components to assure that the belt is running properly. That said, conveyor belts must also be kept clean to prevent material from sticking and building up, which can lead to belt damage, as well as dirty return rolls and snubs.
To clean conveyor belts, scraping is the method that’s most commonly employed. You can make your own rubber scrapers, but purchasing belt scraper assemblies to install on your system and then keeping up with regular scraper blade changes, is a much smarter option.
As you can see, staying on top of your quarry equipment’s maintenance needs can be challenging based on the sheer amount of service these machines require to minimize downtime. The good news is, you don’t have to go it alone. Here at Kemper Equipment, we offer our ROCKSTAR inspection and maintenance program designed to bring maximum efficiency to your production.
Kemper safety and factory-trained service technicians will perform regular maintenance and inspections on your crushing and screening equipment. Proactive maintenance avoids costly repairs now and downtime in the future. Contact us today to learn more about how our factory and safety-trained techs can help you keep up with your crusher, screen, and conveyor maintenance.