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A Snack Foods Manufacturer was experiencing short service life (4 months) used within a 7 lane food processing conveyor system. Due to daily wash-down cycles, water ingress into the bearings caused premature failure. This resulted in costly maintenance, loss of production and damage to ancillary equipment including conveyor belts. NSK engineers reviewed the bearing application and recommended the use of Stainless Steel deep groove ball bearings with Molded-Oil lubrication and DDU seals. Regular monitoring of the application showed that the bearing lifetime was extended from just 4 months to 12 months.

Key Facts

  • Food conveyor system
  • Frequent wash-down cycles using agressive cleaning fluids causing standard bearings to fail prematurely
  • Total of 84 bearings used in the equipment, replaced 3 times per year - totalling 252 bearings annually
  • Maintenance time of 24 hours per breakdown (2 engineers working for 12 hours)
  • Loss of production: 14 hours per breakdown
  • Standard bearings replaced with Stainless Steel Molded-Oil bearings increasing bearing life from 4 to 12 months
  • Snack Foods Manufacturer
  • Molded-Oil Deep Groove Ball Bearings

Value Proposals

  • NSK engineers performed a Failed Bearing Analysis which confirmed water ingress as the cause for premature bearing failure
  • An Application Review showed that the standard sealed Deep Groove Ball Bearings were inadequate
  • NSK recommended using stainless steel Molded-Oil Deep Groove Ball Bearings to extend bearing life
  • The customer benefited from reduced maintenance costs and increased productivity
  • Bearing replacement reduced to just once annually

Product Features

  • Complete stainless steel bearing assembly ideal for corrosive environments
  • Molded Oil Lubrication System provides a sealed for life bearing solution
  • Grease-free property with no oil refilling keeps operating environments clean
  • Operating life more than twice as long as grease lubrication, in water or dust contaminated environment
  • High integrity contact-seal 
  • Achieves extended maintenance-free performance as Molded-Oil provides a continuous supply of lubricant. Available for high speed applications
  • Available for ball bearing, spherical roller bearing and tapered roller bearings

Cost Saving Breakdown

Before Cost p.a. NSK Solution Cost p.a.
Bearing Replacement: Deep Groove Ball Bearings x3 times year
$729 Bearing Replacement: Stainless Steel Molded-Oil Deep Groove Ball bearings once annually $4,536
Engineering costs:
2 men @ 37/h each x 24 hours x 3 times per year
$3,432 Engineering costs:
2 men @ 37/h each x 24 hours x 1 times per year
Potential lost sales profit:
$1,360 per hour x 14 hours downtime x 3 times per year
$57,120 Potential lost sales profit:
Total Costs $61,281 $5,680