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5 Things to Remember When Installing Pillow Block Bearings

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When the time comes to replace your pillow block bearings, you should hopefully have an idea of how to go about it correctly. However, there are some important installation factors you should be aware of. And that doesn't just include getting the right bearing for replacement, though that is very important as well. Here's a quick list of ideas and reminders for you to think about:

  1. Should I also replace the housing when changing the pillow block bearing? It is recommended that you change out the entire unit. Since the bearing usually makes up 80% or more of the cost of the unit, and the housing is machined to compliment and fit the bearing, it makes sense to replace both. If you don't, you'll likely end up with a loose bearing, or the bearing housing will wear out quickly, and you'll end up replacing both anyways.
  2. Can I use a soft faced hammer to replace or install a bearing? While this would make a much better choice than a steel hammer would, it isn't as good an option as a driver set or an arbor press. Be mindful to not press on the rolling parts or inner ring, as this could bend the raceway, causing noise and rubbing as well as a significantly shorter lifespan for your bearing unit. 
  3. How do I know if the bearing I'm using is the right one? For starters, compare it to the old bearing. This won't guarantee that it's correct however, especially if the wrong bearing was used during a previous replacement. Make use of any illustrations, or a parts guide to better identify the bearing. Also, if you aren't getting the longevity that you should expect from your bearing, check out the worn bearing for potential clues. Additionally, use a replacement that meets or exceeds the correct load, speed, and environmental qualifications.
  4. Can greasing a bearing cause damage to the seals? Yes, but this can be avoided. Find out how much psi your grease gun puts out, and how much pressure the seals can withstand. Knowing these two factors should help you avoid any damage to your seals, or excessive greasing.
  5. How do I grease the difficult areas? Many manufacturers offer a portable lubing device, which will control the amount of lube used and reduce or eliminate the need to lubricate manually. Some devices also include nylon tubing with adaptable fittings for greater reach.

If you're looking for more quality and better prices for your replacement parts, check out this vast selection of pillow block bearings and find what you need.

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