One of the most common issues we’ve come across is that plants run into trouble when their conveyor belt isn’t aligned properly. A crooked conveyor belt can interrupt the process of transporting product across a plant, ultimately delaying production. Properly aligning a conveyor belt, also known as conveyor belt tracking, can be done in-house by following a few simple steps.
Here are a few factors to watch for.
- The majority of conveyor issues occur when the conveyor belt is either not level or the conveyor bed isn’t square which results in a faulty connection. To check if your conveyor bed is square, simply take measurements of each corner of the bed diagonally. If the measurements aren’t equal, the bed is likely not square. This fault can easily be resolved by acquiring squaring rods from the manufacturer. Attaching squaring rods to the bottom of the conveyor pulls the frame, thus re-aligning the conveyor.
- A common solution- yet poor mistake- to conveyor belt tracking is to manipulate the end pulley. Doing so only contributes to the problem, as any minor adjustments to one concentrated area could be too much. Instead adjust the smaller rollers underneath the unit to help re-align the belt. Another potential explanation for conveyor belt mis-tracking is debris stuck underneath the belt or at the end pulleys. Accumulated debris could raise the area around the pulleys resulting in mis-tracking to either side of the belt.
- Another tip that can help you get your conveyor belt on track is to make sure the belt was factory-cut properly. If a belt is not cut straight, it could cause a bend in the belt, which leads to mis-tracking. To check that your belt is straight, remove the belt and lay it on the floor.
Tracking a conveyor belt can be simpler than you think.
- Undo the bolts closest to the end pulley. Doing so will loosen the smaller rollers, also known as snub roller. The snub rollers are responsible for navigating the conveyor belt.
- Use a rubber hammer to softly pat on the bolts in the direction you want the belt to shift. Knocking on the bolts will cause the snub rollers to move. Repeat this step a few times until the middle of the belt is within a quarter inch of the middle of the end pulley. Longer conveyor systems may require more snub rollers to be adjusted. If so, begin with the rollers near the ends of the conveyor and work towards the middle.
- After the snub rollers are modified and the conveyor belt is aligned, tighten the bolts so the snub rollers remain in its new spot. It’s important not to adjust too much in a single attempt. Little modifications can make a significant difference.
If after following these steps you’re still having trouble, give Best Packaging a call at (888) 930- BEST. We’ll gladly help!