There are many aspects of overhead crane maintenance that are crucial to ensuring that the system remains operational and can continue to provide the service it was designed to do. Many companies ignore specific components like the pressure cables because they assume these are safe and not worth investing in. Overhead cranes are very complex pieces of equipment and failure to keep them operational can cause severe problems. It is important to have a thorough understanding of how the various components work, and what type of maintenance is required on each piece. When you have an understanding of the different parts and their required tasks, you will be better able to assess whether there is a problem and how to deal with it efficiently.
The most common reason overhead crane maintenance is necessary is because certain parts wear out or break down. As the name suggests, the lifting equipment is primarily used to lift large and heavy objects and so it needs a strong foundation to ensure that it stays in operation. Careful attention is needed so that any part that is used for lifting is checked regularly. Remember that this list is by no means exhaustive. Crane manufacturers should always be consulted for proper machine-specific inspection and maintenance guidelines.
The pressure cables are another area of overhead crane maintenance that most operators fail to pay enough attention to. These cables are essential, but they can be fragile and so they require careful handling to ensure that they remain operational and do their job correctly. Also, if these cables break there is a chance that the entire lift tower could come crashing down, which is why regular maintenance is so important. By having the right qualifications, operators can ensure that the cables are properly manipulated at all times.
The hoist is another vital piece of overhead crane maintenance that most operators ignore. The hoist is responsible for lifting the heavier loads, especially when they have to be transported long distances. While they look like simple devices, they are complex pieces of machinery. And while the operator is responsible for ensuring that the hoist is doing its job properly, he or she has to make sure that it does not break down as well, which makes proactive maintenance a must. Regular inspections and maintenance will ensure that it lasts for many years.
One of the most common ways overhead crane maintenance is carried out is by inspecting the hydraulic system. This is because this system is what lifts the heavy loads and ensures that they are kept on course, as well as making sure that they release at the right time. By having inspectors check on this system at least twice a year, operators can be confident that the machinery and equipment are working in the best possible way.
Most overhead cranes have a mechanism for slowing the hoist, or in other words stopping it from moving too fast. This slow motion is used to prevent the crane from getting out of control. It is a complex and often neglected system but checking it regularly can go a long way in avoiding costly repairs. Each operator should make it a point to see that the brakes are in working order. The overhead crane maintenance checklist will list all of the required components for checking the brakes, as well as a process for cleaning them in between checks.
While the main function of overhead crane maintenance is to prevent catastrophic damage to the equipment itself, it also makes sense to have inspection procedures in place to protect the lifting equipment itself. For example, a lot of metal fatigue can be caused by bad years of exposure to salt air and excessive vibrations, both of which can damage the moving parts. An inspection schedule should include a check of all moving parts to find any signs of wear and tear, and a plan for repair or replacement whenever necessary. It is also important to consider the possibility of oil leaks and the possibility of a catastrophic mechanical failure.
There are other types of inspections that should be included as well, including inspections of the guard system. This is especially important in heavy-duty applications, where failure to detect problems with the guards could lead to catastrophic damage to the equipment. By doing regular inspections, operators will be able to detect problems before they lead to greater damage. Ultimately, the goal of overhead crane maintenance is to prevent accidents that can easily cost millions of dollars in repairs. This can be achieved by having a regular inspection program and a close eye on any part that require attention.