Broken Belt detection

Broken Belt detection

Today's Fun Fact Friday is on Broken Belt (proof-of-flow) detection on HVAC drives, such as the ACH580 .

Let's unravel HVACR complexities with Tim R. Skell!

Our expert, Tim R. Skell, spent almost 3 years sharing his expertise in the #FunFactFriday series on LinkedIn. Now, we are giving him a forum to exchange news, knowledge, and passion for HVACR technologies in the new ABB column.

Join the discussion with Tim R. Skell on LinkedIn to read other fun facts and share ideas!


If you have seven minutes, I highly recommend this video that reviews how broken belt detection is often done today, why that way isn't optimal, and what is the better (and lower cost) way to do it. 

If you do not have seven minutes, here are the three main takeaways:

  1. The current (Amp) difference between a very slow running fan on an induction motor, and a broken belt condition, is very small.
  2. Monitoring current to indicate a broken belt is challenging because of this very small difference, often leading to systems not being set up correctly - due to the desire to avoid nuisance alarms.
  3. "Using a drive to monitor motor torque is a more reliable and cost-effective solution" and is very easy to set up on the ACH580 

If you're looking to learn more about why Variable Speed Drives (VSDs) are advantageous over external current sensors, especially in HVACR, check out our 2-page Tech Note.


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