What Do You Need For Drawworks Disc Brake Cooling?

Massive drawworks disc brakes can get insanely hot. Overheating can lead to slowdowns and breakdowns. You don’t want that.

Read on to learn how this type of cooling works, and what you need to know about it.

Disc Brakes 101

Disc brake of various types are used in virtually every industry. Their main purpose is to control the speed of rotation by turning rotational energy into heat energy. Obviously, the more a disc brake works, the hotter it gets.

Disc brake overheating is a serious problem. In fact, it’s the number one cause of brake failure. There are several ways to cool disc brakes, mainly through air flow. Cooling with air flow is called convective cooling. However, it’s somewhat hard to control.

The Four Phase of Disc Brake Cooling

Thankfully, disc brake cooling is often predictable. Breaking comes in four phases:

  1. Braking
  2. Slow cooling
  3. Fast cooling
  4. Slow cooling

During braking, heat is generated as the drawworks lower the load. Obviously, larger loads will generate more heat.

During the slow cooling phase, the disc stops and work is done at ground level. In that phase, cooling happens passively.

During fast cooling, the discs spin as the load is raised again. The brakes are not applied as the block is raised, which means zero heat generation while the system cools rapidly.

Maintenance Pressure Points

Brake heating and cooling means that your system will go through temperatures that span about 150 degrees Celsius.

Most of the cooling comes from air convection while the discs spin without brakes (fast cooling).

A well maintained drawworks is less prone to overheating. In addition to proper ventilation, sufficient lubrication is also crucial in ensuring the machine is not generating excessive heat.

All grease fittings must be regularly maintained. Additionally, any chain parts must be properly oiled.

Follow your manufacturer’s guidelines and conduct regular inspections. While you can’t measure air flow, you can at least make sure that all oil sumps are filled and all oil nozzles are operational. A plugged oiler means no lubrication, which can lead to problems.

While your drawworks can operate in a range of 150 degrees, you must take into account the local weather as well. Additionally, if yours has a water cooling system, it’s important to keep the cooling water tank full and ensure that water flows properly.

What to Do If Your Drawworks Malfunctions

Even the most well maintained machine breaks down sooner or later. If yours malfunctions, don’t panic!

In case the disc brakes fail, you must always ensure the auxiliary braking systems are in order.

Keep in mind that the auxiliary systems must be considered a temporary solution until you fix the main braking system ASAP. Auxiliary brakes are not designed for long-term use.

Even if you’re using an old, unusual model, there are reputable companies out there that specialize on sourcing unusual or hard-to-find machine parts.

From finding the right part for your custom solution, to sourcing rare parts for your disc brakes, help is available. You just need to reach out and ask.

Posted in Industrial Brakes and Clutches.