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Protecting equipment by perfecting lubrication application

Proper lubrication is essential to the correct functioning of mechanical equipment and ensures its longevity. When bearings are under- or over-lubricated, it causes problems, and can eventually lead to machinery failing.

“Even over-lubricating is problematic, as it causes grease churning and overheating, which can eventually damage a machine’s motor coils or windings,” says Callum Ford, national marketing manager at Lubrication Engineers (LE) South Africa. “At LE, we advise customers to use the minimum quantity lubrication (MQL) at the correct interval to protect equipment, minimise costs and ultimately optimise their businesses.”

LE supplies various products and solutions to make this easier, as well as decreasing the risk of lubrication cross-contamination. The company’s Xport battery- powered grease gun with clear grease tube is especially useful for lubricating hard-to-reach areas or equipment that requires frequent or large-scale lubrication.

“We estimate that 60 to 80% of bearing failures are lubricant-related, including problems caused by grease cross-contamination,” says Ford. “When the wrong grease is applied to a piece of equipment, the resulting issues can be expensive and time-consuming to correct. The grease-gun allows for easy and 100% accurate visual identification, eliminates cross-contamination and enhances existing lubrication reliability programmes.”

The unit’s 19.2-volt rechargeable battery provides powerful, efficient grease delivery and its extra-long whip hose conveniently extends into hard-to-reach areas. The tubes are made of high-impact, fracture-resistant polycarbonate, capable of withstanding heavy use and high temperatures, and they fit many standard grease guns, making upgrades of existing guns easy and cost-effective.

For larger-scale applications, Ford suggests LE’s sing-point lubrication systems, which are essentially micro-computer lubricators. “With our range of top-quality Xport Perma single-point applicators, customers can ensure they deliver precise, timed lubrication without the need for time-consuming manual lubricant application,” he says.

“The exact greasing quantity and re-greasing intervals for each bearing can be easily calculated and managed by the MQL schedule. In addition, the RFID system helps customers to track, monitor and fix lubrication-related issues during routine inspections, thus simplifying and improving their plant maintenance.”

The Xport single-point lubricators can easily be installed at any location, and run on either battery or mains power. “They are ideal for equipment located in isolated or dangerous areas and help to eliminate potential human errors and improve employee safety,” says Ford. “They can be used with LE’s complete line of high-performance industrial greases, from electric motors to food-grade, high-temperature and all-purpose lubricants.”

Single-point lubricators remove the uncertainty in greasing intervals and grease volumes on each bearing, as well as ensuring no lubrication point is missed during inspection. They enable easy tracking of bearing problems and ultimately reduce maintenance costs.

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