As drives age there's often the thought of replacing them for newer, shinier models - smaller units with more functionality. No doubt there is a time for what can be a significant CAPEX cost, but what if your dedicated drive (which has given good service for years) just needs some basic maintenance, or a preventative maintenance kit changeover? This ACS624 low harmonic, 12 pulse drive was recently delivered to EDC for a replacement PM upgrade kit. The drive, which runs on a blower application with a 200kW motor, will be fitted with genuine ABB parts, so when the work is completed it will be as perfect an upgrade as possible.

variable speed drive repair in-house at edc

Once the PM kit has been replaced the drive will be cleaned and load tested to ensure it's fully functional before being properly packaged and returned to the customer. Normally, drives will be shipped to us for repair, but if you don't have an account with a courier, don't worry, we can arrange the collection of your drive from site, ensuring a fast turn-around and a speedy return. Not convenient to remove the drive from site due to it being mission critical? We'll come to it. Our engineers, accompanied by ABB service suitcases and PM kits can effect a repair or overhaul on site, at a time convenient to you.

By following best practice and having this low harmonic drive maintained in line with ABB's detailed maintenance schedule, it's likely that this VSD will continue to give years of uninterrupted service.

vsd reciving new PM kit at EDC

But wait - surely it's unrealistic to expect a drive to go on forever? Yes, it is. But EDC is still annually servicing drives which were installed 20 years ago - proving maintenance works. But before you proceed with repairs and PM kits, what should you consider? How do you balance the short-term fix and smaller costs with the long-term option (and increased cost) of replacement? Well, let's have a run through.

1) Do you expect an old dog to learn new tricks? Are you going to be making increasing demands of your drive in the future? Or is its application and programming firmly set for the foreseeable future? In this case: an oldie is a goodie.

2) How much money would your plant lose if this drive went down. What did you say? How much????!!! Per hour? Wow! There comes a time when plant-critical machinery has to be replaced. It's a sad day, but it happens. If a drive going down can cost you thousands in lost production then the answer is probably to buy a new drive, but get the old unit repaired and keep it as a spare. There's nothing like having a fall-back or plan 'B' to help you sleep easier at night.

3) Budgetary constraints. It's a problem as old as the hills CAPEX versus OPEX.... versus TOTEX -  beyond your control.

VSD undergoing preventative maintenance at EDCUltimately, most companies can only afford to replace drives when absolutely necessary - when the VSD installed is regularly having issues and production (and profit) are suffering. But you can help your VSD achieve its full potential by looking after it, providing routine maintenance, keeping it in a dry, dust-free non-corrosive, well-ventilated environment and checking that its connections remain tight (which prevents arcing). Some drives have enhanced ingress protection, but as a rule of thumb water + drives = trouble. In short, good preventative maintenance can literally make or break your variable speed drive. Contact EDC today to see how we can assist in advising what maintenance your VSD is due - all we need is the serial number of your drive, we'll do the rest. Contact EDC Service.

Read more about variable speed drive repair.