Determine the Risk To Your Pump Motor Bearings

Helwig Carbon Products, Inc. has developed the BPK-Probe Shaft Voltage Detection Device. The new device will provide a tool for –pump technicians to test a pump motor for the potential for bearing failures from induced shaft currents. 

When a VFD controls a pump motor, there is a strong possibility that induced shaft currents are present. These induced shaft currents will seek a path of least resistance to ground, and that typically will be through the motor bearings. These damaging shaft currents will cause fluting and frosting of the bearing raceway and cause premature failure and a costly replacement. 

To facilitate predictive maintenance and avoid these problems, a pump technician can use the BPK-Probe to test the pump motor. The device will detect any shaft currents and display the strength of them on the device’s LCD screen or the included oscilloscope. The BPK-Probe can also simulate the installation of a Bearing Protection Kit™ that will mitigate the problem and protect the pump motor bearings. The Bearing Protection Kit utilizes a silver graphite brush in contact with the shaft to provide a least resistant path to ground. The silver graphite brush conducts the induced shaft current safely to ground and away from the motor bearings. This device will demonstrate to the pump technician or end-user how a Bearing Protection Kit can provide effective and economical protection of the pump motor bearings long before actual failure, and before vibration and temperature monitoring indicate a potential failure. 

The Bearing Protection Kits from Helwig Carbon Products are easily installed by pump motor OEM’s, pump technicians, and end-users. They can be installed in the field on most pump motors with an accessible shaft or coupling. Many end-users are willing to apply this kind of maintenance practice to their pump motors to protect their investment and reduce downtime. The Helwig Carbon BPK-Probe used in conjunction with the Bearing Protection Kit will provide an effective combination for extending pump motor life and avoiding costly repairs. 


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