Bearing installation is as important as bearing design and cleanliness. Improper installation can damage the bearing assembly and can cause brinelling of the bearing, which can result in bearing vibration, noise, and reduced life. listed below are some tips that will help prevent incorrect installation and extend bearing life
- Do not remove the bearing from its packaging until you are ready to mount it. The packaging provides protection from contamination.
- Bearings should be installed in a clean environment, free from dust, debris, moisture and other contaminants. When installing a bearing in the field, make an effort to ensure a clean work area. Use protective screens around the work area, and provide a clean resting surface for the bearing and other components until they can be installed.
- When installing a new bearing, do not remove the lubricant or preservative applied by the manufacturer. The preservatives used on almost all bearings are fully compatible with commonly used oils and other lubricants. Leaving it in place will protect the bearing from fingerprints and corrosion.
- Before beginning the installation, plan your work. Be certain that you have the correct replacement bearing and necessary additional components. Also determine what tools will be required, including adjustment tools if appropriate, and have them on hand. Finally, if the bearing needs to be lubricated as part of the installation process, have the appropriate lubricants and tools available. Planning your work will enable you to perform the installation more quickly with few delays, shortening the amount of time the bearing is out of the equipment and exposed to contamination and possible handling damage.
- Shaft surfaces that will support and contact the bearing must be clean and free from nicks or burrs. Shaft shoulders and spacer rings contacting the bearing should be square with the shaft axis. The shaft fillet must be small enough to clear the radius of the bearing.
- Thoroughly clean all machine components near where the bearing will be installed, giving special attention to the mounting surfaces and housings. Housings should be cleaned, including blowing out the oil holes. If the equipment has blind holes where air is ineffective, use a magnetic rod to remove metal chips that might have become lodged there during machining or maintenance.
- Do not install bearings in a damaged or worn housing, or on a damaged or worn shaft. Inner and outer ring seat damage should be repaired by using properly fitted sleeves. Shafts can be built up by metal spray and machined to the correct size. If there is not a press fit on the shaft, a weld overlay and re-grind process is recommended to bring the shaft back to specification.