Maintenance of Allen Bradley AC Drives

17th May 2013 | Posted by Charlotte Miskell

During the lifespan of any drive, there comes a time when you may have to consider whether it is necessary to replace the drive. Many Allen Bradley AC drives have been in use for around 20 years and with careful maintenance throughout this period, they should still be in good condition. However, nothing is completely infallible and the drives may need maintenance, or to be completely replaced. The question is, do completely upgrade your drive or simply replace parts?


By their very nature, the components of AC drives will be likely to deteriorate over time. It is widely accepted that these components such as the capacitors or bearings will need replacement during their lifetime. This is an essential part of the preventative maintenance program. However, at some stage, the energy savings offered by an AC drive could outweigh the cost of replacing an old installation such as hydraulic coupling or throttle control.


There will always be a point where you have to ask whether an AC Drive is giving you exactly what you want. Technology can move on very quickly over a 20 year period and there are many new features offered by the new Allen Bradley AC drives. However, this doesn’t always mean throwing away your old drive, depending on its age, you could add functionality through downloading the latest software to your drive or by applying a hardware update.

Upgrading your drive can be an excellent option as it means that you could benefit from enhanced communications or more process intelligence allowing you to track your exact energy saving levels.

So, you can upgrade an existing drive with the latest software or hardware options to improve the performance of the application.


The final maintenance option is retrofit. A retrofit will seek to salvage as much of the existing drive as possible, whilst including a more compact and efficient drive. This could also bring the benefit of an improved user interface and new functionality.

An example of where a retrofit may be necessary is when the problem of inadequate cooling arises. If AC drives are not maintained correctly, with regular replacement of air filters and annual checking and cleaning of heat sink fins, then this could cause insufficient air to flow through the vents. Here, a retrofit will allow you to fix any problems with your AC drive, without the need for an entirely new system.

At Proplas we can offer advice on the maintenance and installation of your Allen Bradley AC drives and you can get in touch by visiting our website today.

Allen Bradley AC Drives

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