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What Causes a Motor to Malfunction or Fail?

Mike Jeffries | February 1, 2018

what causes a motor to malfunctionA working motor is crucial to a factory's operation. When a motor malfunctions or fails, it can cause major delays. To help avoid this, it is important that all motors are inspected and maintained regularly to ensure that they are working properly. If motor failure does occur, there are a few likely causes.

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Related Blog: Motor Failure: To Replace or Rewire?

What causes a motor to malfunction?

Low Insulation Resistance

When a motor is first installed it typically has a resistance level of over one thousand megaohms. However as time goes on, this resistance level can begin to gradually decrease. This results in poor insulation performance, which can eventually lead to motor failure.

Overheating

Too much heat within the motor can quickly lead to the deterioration of the motor winding insulation. This can be caused by operating the motor in a high heat environment or when the motor is started at a higher temperature than its design temperature. Overheating can also occur if the motor operates in an area without a proper cooling system in place.

Electrical Overload

If for any reason the motor begins to draw in too much current for what its capacity can handle, it can suffer from electrical overload. This can cause serious issues within the motor. Fortunately, there are devices available which will prevent excess currents from flowing into the motor.

Moisture

Moisture can wreak havoc on a motor. Over time it can lead to the corrosion of rotors, motor shafts and bearings. To prevent this, it is important that the motor stay dry at all times.

Dirt

When dirt is able to access the inner workings of the motor, serious damage can occur. If it gets onto the motor winding, the insulating value could be effected. Also, dirt can build up around and block the cooling fan, which can cause the motor to overheat.

Vibration

It is difficult for any electrical component to stand up against vibration and this stands true for motors as well. Vibration can lead to a number of issues within the motor, which can cause it to malfunction. This can be due to several reasons, but the main two are misalignment of the motor when it was first installed and internal corrosion.

Motor failure can occur, but with the proper safeguards in place and with regular motor maintenance you can help prevent it. If you are currently experiencing issues with a motor, contact Mader Electric, Inc., who will gladly inspect and make any repairs necessary.
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Topics: electrical suplies, electric repair, motors sarasota, pump repair, expert on motor and controls, motor and control expert, expert on motors and controls, motor and control expert sarasota, motor control center, motor failure, motor safety, motor maintenance, motor

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