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Electric Motors and Maintenance

Keep Your Electric Motors Running Efficiently and Safely.

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Here's a look at ways to protect and maintain electric motors. Electric motors are used in many applications throughout your home. There are furnace blower motors, ceiling fans, sump pumps, garbage disposers, fans cooling compressors on refrigerators, dishwasher motors, exhaust fan motors, and air conditioner motors. That's just the indoor motors. Outside, on the farm you may have grain bin drying motors, auger motors, ventilation motors, air compressor motors, etc... The list goes on and on. They all need to be kept clean and oiled if possible to keep them from overheating and tripping a thermal protective device that is built in to many of the previously mentioned motors.

1. Thermal Electric Motor Protection

The term thermally protected in motors, pertains to a thermal protector placed internallly within a motor or motor-compressor to protect the motor and motor windings components from dangerous overheating that can cause motor failure.

This overheating generally occurs when the motor is overloaded, a bearing seizes up, something locksd the motor shaft from turning, or the motor simply fails to start properly. A failure to start may be caused by faulty start windings in a motor.

2. Calculating Electrical Loads For Motors

So you have an appliance or piece of machinery that has a motor on it and you are wondering how to determine what sized circuit breaker or fuse to connect it to. This motor may be on things like dishwashers, sump pumps, air compressors, garbage disposers, and even plain old fans.

3. How To Calculate Safe Electrical Load Capacities

We all have so many motors around the house, so how is one to know what sized circuit to put each of these items on? You see, the circuits are protected by either circuit breakers or fuses that limit the amount of amperage allowed to flow through that circuit. They watch over the circuit's power draw like a watchdog. But still, how do we determine the right size for these circuit breakers and fuses?

Motors have a nameplate rating that is listed on the side of the motor. It lists the type, serial number, voltage, whether it is AC or DC, the RPM's, and the amperage rating. If you know the voltage and amperage rating, you can determine the wattage or total capacity needed for the safe operation of the motor.

4. Easy Fan Motor Maintenance

Central air conditioners rely on fans to blow air through the condenser coils in order to dissipate heat. These fans are subject to the sun’s heat, rain, snow, and other adverse conditions, including dirt and grime. To keep the fan in tiptop shape, these fan motors need maintenance in the form of regular oiling.

5. Eliminating Ceiling Fan Noise

Ceiling fans have been documented to reduce both heating and cooling costs when they are used in addition to the heating and cooling units. These fans sometimes get used day and night, but sometimes not much at all. They do require maintenance from time to time and these are some things that need to be addressed when ceiling fans become noisy.

6. Electrical Safety Around the Farm at Harvest Season

Every year farmers deal with many dangers around the farms and fields of America. Slow moving vehicles, moving parts on equipment, and electrical hazards are all a part of their daily routines as they go through their busy routines. Farm safety should be an ongoing practice on the farm and now that the harvest season is upon us, now is as good a time as any to check for potential safety problems.

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