Time is Money: The true cost of belt alignment.



In some arenas there are perceptions about belt alignment. Opinions such as, close is good enough, you can eye ball it, string works just fine, a straight edge is all you really need still persist. In one case I heard of using an 8 foot fluorescent light bulb, claiming that it is best thing you can use, because they are all manufactured to be perfectly straight.

The reality is that when you are changing worn belts, pullies, bearings, motors, bases, shafts, installing a new machine or just re-tensioning belts.  Your time is money, investing resources to perform a job and getting a poor result is a waste of both.

The scenario is the same for any, municipality, hospital, hotel, water treatment facility, scrap processor, laboratory, food or beverage processor, university, paint manufacture, power plant, refinery, steel mill, foundry or in other words, everyplace that has belt driven machinery.   And belt driven machinery requires periodic attention of the drive system and there are costs associated with it.

Reduce-Extend-Align, the 1-2-3’s of reducing operating cost:

  1. The easiest way to reduce cost is to reduce the frequency of maintenance.
  2. The best way to do that, is to extend the machinery life to the maximum.
  3. The easiest way to get maximum machine life, is to get and maintain accurate belt alignment.

It is well known that belt driven machines are unreliable if misalignment is present.  Often the reason for that misalignment is due to the belt alignment procedure.  Alignment tools and alignment methods can be difficult and have various degrees of error, trying to align with an inaccurate tool and a confusing method equates to a false positive result.  Due to a false positive result, the pullies appear to be in alignment when in fact they are not.  And, with the machine in a misaligned state it will consume belts at a higher than normal rate, runs less efficient and vibrate excessively.  Vibration destroys bearings, ruins motors, breaks bases, cracks frames, weakens housings, shreds seals and can even crack foundations. The result is increased frequency of maintenance cycles, reduced machinery reliability and increased cost.

The solution: The B.A.T. Belt Alignment Tool® it is designed to deliver exact, accurate and speedy belt alignment the very first time.   What makes the B.A.T. faster and better than any other method are the super accurate dual green lasers, dual Glow Line® targets and the easy, intuitive operation of the tool.  As soon as the B.A.T. is magnetically affixed to the machine the alignment solution is instantly observed, and corrections are accurate and easy.  With the B.A.T. you reduce the time for the alignment job and are truly correcting the misalignment the very first time.  Fast accurate alignment equals a reliable machine which means real cost savings.

This is a list of some costs associated with performing a routine belt alignment or belt replacement.

  1. Time of properly trained & skilled people to perform the task.
  2. Time of personnel to schedule the job.
  3. Time of someone to order parts.
  4. Time of someone to stage parts.
  5. Time to gather tools.
  6. Time to get to job site.
  7. Time to lockout tag out.
  8. Time to mitigate risks, safety requirements and documents.
  9. Time to return from the job site.
  10. Time of administration to track labor and materials.
  11. Cost of Materials.
  12. Other