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    TPC Wire & Cable Blog

    Choosing the Right VFD Cable is Protecting Your Motor

    Posted by TPC Wire & Cable Corp. on April 16, 2020


    iStock-157619272

    Insurance, an intangible protection from a loss, provides another intangible guarantee: peace of mind. Insurance is a safety net for when things go wrong and help manage a business’s risk. It is something that can go overlooked until tragedy strikes and you’re left with unexpected financial losses. Now think about VFD cables as your variable speed motor’s insurance policy.

    Protecting Your Motor

    Variable speed motors are everywhere and play pivotal roles across all industries.  Engineers and operators have made the investment into AC drive systems, but fail to realize the importance of using the appropriate cable for the application and real damage to equipment and injury to personnel can occur as a result.

    Signs You're Using the Wrong Cable

    If you are seeing pitting or fluting of your variable speed motor’s bearings, you are using the wrong VFD cable.  Excessive fluting can lead to a vibrating shaft resulting in motor damage.  In extreme cases, a motor can even bounce out of its mounting brackets. These issues can all be resolved with the use of the correct VFD cable.

    When using the wrong VFD cable, cable failure can cause motor damage. Drive systems create voltage spikes and stray currents.  Without proper shielding and grounding of those currents, they will find their own path to ground. This is usually at the motor and noticeable when inspecting the bearings for pitting and fluting.  Sparks of electricity are attacking a variable speed motor’s bearings causing significant damage. Stray currents can also find a path to ground at the drives.  This is a very expensive replacement.  Stray currents can even cause a shock hazard and result in injury to personnel. 

    All of these scenarios can cause a financial loss through product replacement, unplanned downtime, and personnel injury. When investing in the proper VFD cable and following proper grounding protocol, those risks are mitigated. Knowing those risks are mitigated, operations can continue with peace of mind knowing your variable speed motor is protected. For grounding, whether at the drive, the motor or both, TPC recommends following the variable speed motor manual’s instructions.

    Learn More About VFD Cables

    To find out how TPC can save you money and production hours request a Total Cost of Ownership to provide timely, cost-effective, custom products and services that are within your budget. TPC can identify your application-specific challenge, recommend a solution, and compare the current product(s) you are using to the TPC product that will best meet your need.

    Want to learn more about VFD cables? Read our blog, What is VFD Cable & Why Does it Matter? For more information on learning how to select the correct VFD cable for your variable speed motor, contact us!

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    Topics: Variable Frequency Drive, VFD, AC Motor

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