Top Causes of Fan Failures & How You Can Prevent Them

A general rule of engineering holds that the more complex a machine, the more ways it has to break down. Put another way, simple machines (such as pulleys, wheels, and levers) won’t require as much maintenance (if any) as a combustion engine or massive, industrial excavator. 

While you’re no doubt familiar with the tools of your trade, some machines on your jobsite may escape your watchful eye. The health and continued functionality of our electrostatic precipitators (ESPs), for example, can easily get away from us. 

Simple Component, Complex Machine

As a necessary part of your industry’s commitment to reducing air pollution, Fans rank among the most critical  machines on your plant site. Minor failures or dips in performance can often go undetected. It can be easy for issues with your large fans to go unnoticed until it’s too late. 

At AirTek in Troy, AL, we service Fans from the top down, reviewing every critical and minor component for operational fitness. Your fans are necessary to hitting your compliance goals while also hitting those monthly and quarterly production goals. 

Here are the top reasons fans break, causing work stoppages, periods of noncompliance, or expensive, emergency repairs.

Top Fan Failure Causes & Issues

Blade Issues 

Your fan wheel may be 10 feet in diameter or larger. That’s a lot of surface area for each individual blade. 

Without regular maintenance, your fan blades could end up coated in dust. 

Excess weight on fan blades can compromise functionality, contribute to wobble, or even accelerate wear and tear until a replacement is required, rather than some simple maintenance.

Bearing Issues

To hold that 10-foot fan wheel in place, your fan requires other hefty components. Bearing alignment and maintenance is necessary to keep the fan operating smoothly and without excess degradation brought on by wobble. Without a healthy bearing, your fan may be at risk of failure, to say nothing of functioning at an acceptable level of performance.

Loose bearings, battered bearings, or elderly bearings can contribute to increased friction during fan rotation. Your fan’s bearing also helps to distribute the load across the shaft  for the greatest, sustained balance throughout operation. Simply put, a fan without a healthy bearing cannot operate (or cannot operate for long).

Fan Ducts

Unmaintained or simply old equipment can retain moisture—a serious issue for your continued operation. In what’s meant to be a dry environment (where dust can rise, collect, and settle to keep it from the air), moisture can cause clumping, clogging, and other issues. 

Clogs or blockages in your fan duct  can seriously undermine performance and operational efficiency. To make matters more difficult, simply cleaning the duct  may not be enough. You’ll need to locate the components responsible for the build up of moisture or the blockage itself. 

At AirTek, we pride ourselves on diagnosing ailing ESPs and ducts. We can restore the components while also locating and repairing other malfunctioning components for best performance, longer life, and reduced costs all around.

Complex Machines, Simple Solutions

For the best performance year after year, AirTek services electrostatic precipitators and fans so you don’t have to worry about them. On any given day, you have a hundred other fires to put out. The last thing you need is a necessary piece of environmental protection equipment malfunctioning for reasons beyond your understanding. 

AirTek can help through regular, scheduled maintenance before emergencies arise. When emergencies do happen, we can help with those too. But the best kind of repair jobs are scheduled well in advance and when you can afford them.

Set up a maintenance program with AirTek today so that you can get back to business.


Repairs and maintenance rather than emergency work stoppages & noncompliance

You need the peace of mind that comes with knowing you’re set up for success each and every day. To keep working hard toward your goals, you need a hard working ESP. To schedule regular maintenance, or to diagnose an issue with your ESP, trust the electrostatic precipitator expertise at AirTek. Contact us or give us a call today at  (334) 384-0457 for more information on the operational health and functionality of your ESP’s and fans.