Do You Look at Failed Bearings?

If not, why not? Bearing failures are a very common form of mechanical breakdown. Apart from identifying that the failure is occurring using a variety of techniques and tools, we rarely take the steps necessary to understanding and prevent the failure from happening again in the future. We can learn a lot about why a bearing failed by simply looking at the bearing and observing the failure patterns.

You do not need a massive investment in fancy technical gear either. A $15 jeweler’s loupe or a $20 lens kit for your smart phone and some decent light (all available from amazon) is all you really need. Couple that with good disassembly techniques (to preserve evidence) and a knowledge of what to look for and you are well on your way to understanding 80% of your failures. Take a look here for some ideas on bearing forensics and don’t forget to check out the app stores for the free Reliability Solutions App that has access to over fifty reliability how to videos.

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