Proactive Maintenance


The popularity of VFDs (Variable Frequency Drives) and their continual evolution over the past couple of decades has brought features and benefits related to control and resultant energy efficiency. Make sure you are gleaning all the benefits that you can…and will continue to do so for years to come. The Smith & Long Proactive Electrical Maintenance Services Team can be a vital part of this goal for your firm.

Not long after their introduction to the marketplace, the practical applications for VFD’s has continued to grow at an exponential rate…so much so that they are often considered as the absolute standard for equipment motor control integration…on new equipment and as retrofits.

    • Air Handling – Supply fans, return fans, HVAC, air compressors, etc.
    • Fluid Handling – Booster pumps, circulation pumps, process pumps, hydraulics, etc.
  • Production Equipment – Conveyors, assembly lines, process equipment, etc.

Energy incentives may have been received to supply and install VFDs in the first place, and if properly commissioned it should have been and continue to be a ROI win-win-win based on:

  1. Initial monetary incentive
  2. Ongoing reduced energy costs
  3. Improved production outcomes, be it comfort, quality control, reduced equipment wear and tear

Unfortunately, as time goes on and for a long and varied list of reasons, while #1 is a “given” as it was based on funds you already received for the original installation, #2 and #3, however, are not.

Sometimes due to lack of operator training, new personnel, emergency production “temporary” (and now seemingly permanent) fixes, change in production requirements, inadvertent programming changes, or misapplication of bypass modes, etc., the original intent and planned gains through the VFD have been lost.

The second category of VFD “failures” is through the literal failure of the VFD itself…often by the lack of proactive maintenance performed on them.

Whatever the concern or need, be it from a performance issue and thus needing enhanced features and operability through the various modes of acceleration, deceleration, minimum and maximum RPM, torque, current limit, multiple batching, annunciation, alarms, etc.  Or perhaps you realize since the days of initial commissioning, while the VFD or VFDs appear to be operating fine, this may also have come with a false sense of security and in combination with your daily heavy dependence on it.  

These are all perfect reasons to engage the Smith & Long Proactive Electrical Maintenance Services Team!  If it is a programming or controls need, we will be so pleased to help.  However, even if no changes are currently required, let us help you ensure your VFDs have the best opportunity to continue to play that vital role they currently play…reliably and consistently for many years to come by performing a Proactive Maintenance Procedure on them.

A VFD Proactive Maintenance Procedure involves inspecting VFDs in both online and offline modes.  Our technician will take appropriate measurements while the VFD is in operation and then document them accordingly.  Secondly, a physical inspection will take place that will include terminal maintenance, cleaning, review of ventilation fans and filters as applicable, and noting any visual component decolourization as a possible indicator of an overheating condition and or future component failure.  This inspection also includes ancillary equipment key to the functionality and reliability of the VFD system such as the associated motor, operator interface, line and load reactors, etc., as applicable.  All findings will be documented in a concise report, noting any recommendations for immediate or future servicing considerations.

Considering a VFD controls and operability upgrade through remote annunciation and control?  Or perhaps a new graphical operator interface?  The Smith & Long Proactive Electrical Maintenance Services Team can do that too!  So, whatever the need or concern related to your invaluable VFD assets, contact us and let us provide you with a quality RESPONSE™ performed by our knowledgeable and helpful VFD experts.