Many production lines and other industrial setups feature conveyor systems that occupy center stage. The importance of the belt that allows a conveyor to move raw materials, parts, or finished products from place to place will rarely be overlooked.
At the heart of every common conveyor system design lies an equally significant sort of component. Most conveyors rely heavily on rollers that provide support and keep friction to a minimum.
Choosing the right types of conveyor rollers will always make it far more likely that a system will serve a given purpose well. There are five especially important facts about conveyor rollers to be aware of, a look at which follows.
Wear is Always a Concern
Since it is a part designed to move, any conveyor roller will eventually wear out. Just how long it takes for a roller to deteriorate to the point that it will need to be replaced will depend upon its design and materials.
Companies that manufacture heavy duty rollers for conveyors help keep costs down for their clients by limiting the frequency of required maintenance. It will often make the most long-term sense to pay a bit more for an especially rugged roller, instead of saving a bit of money up front by purchasing a cheaper model.
Heavy-duty rollers tend to be made of high-quality alloys and include bearings with ratings that reflect small tolerances. In addition to reducing replacement frequency, high-end conveyor rollers will make costly failure-induced downtime less likely.
Proper O-Belt or Chain Alignment is Critical
Some conveyor rollers are designed to be driven by O-shaped belts made of flexible material. Others are powered by chains that link individual rollers together and connect groups of them to motors.
In any case, the belt or chain that drives a roller will need to be aligned accurately with the slot or surface designed to accommodate it. Improper alignment will stress both the belt itself and the bearings within the affected roller.
Some conveyor rollers are designed to highlight any such problems before their negative effects can accumulate to any extent. Rollers that encourage proper belt alignment tend to be the easiest to set up and maintain.
Static Electricity Needs to be Dissipated Somehow
The flexible materials many conveyor belts are made from are often effective at building up large amounts of static electricity. While this might not be a concern in some environments, it can easily become a potentially deadly danger in many others. Rollers that include means of dissipating static electricity or discouraging its buildup should generally be preferred in such situations.
Requirements Differ Depending Upon Roller Type
Conveyor rollers that support belts endure different operating conditions than those that are mounted beside them to allow the loading of products or materials. Although they often look quite similar, belt and side rollers should always be designed to account for the requirements unique to each role.
Rollers Place Limits on Rates of Operation
A conveyor that does not move quickly enough can leave expensive equipment sitting idle every day. A roller’s design and specifications will almost always impact just how fast a given conveyor can be driven. Rollers should always be chosen such they will never limit the rest of the equipment on a production line or elsewhere.
These five facts consistently impact the suitability of particular conveyor rollers to various applications. Understanding the importance and relevance of these issues should make it easier to choose a roller model that will work well in any situation.