Food Safe Bearings

ABB launches new mounted ball line for food manufacturers

In the food and beverage industry, equipment requires some of the most thorough maintenance. Failures due to water ingress, grease wash-out, and corrosion, as well as stringent health regulations and the effects of the cleaning chemicals this merit, are all regular headaches for food and beverage manufacturers.

Several companies, including NTN, AST, and SKF, make bearings designed to address these concerns.  The latest offering is ABB’s new line of Dodge “Food Safe” mounted ball bearings.

The Swiss company announced February 26 in a press release that its newest bearings are specifically designed to withstand caustic, high-pressure cleaning and sanitation processes. ABB—which, given its input from the Baldor sector, is likely wise to industry needs—says these are “the first industrial bearings to achieve the IP69 water protection rating without the use of an end cover, making them ideal for use in the food and beverage industry, where equipment must be aggressively cleaned. They are the only bearings to carry a warranty against failure due to water ingress.”

The bearing is also equipped with lubrication protection to prevent grease wash-out, which is the leading cause for bearing failure in washdown environments.

“Food Safe bearings solve the two most common reliability problems in the food industry—grease washout and corrosion,” says David Kaunitz, a product manager for ball bearings at ABB. “We are so confident in our design that if a customer registers their Food Safe bearings, they will receive a one-year warranty against failure due to water ingress.”

The new bearings are available in a variety of housing styles, including pillow block, tapped base, flange and take-ups ranging in sizes from ½ inch (20mm) up to 1-15/16 inch (50 mm).

Consumers and stringent health regulations increasingly challenge food manufacturers to guarantee higher food safety and hygiene standards. However, harsh chemicals and high-pressure sprays used in clean-in-place (CIP) procedures can quickly deteriorate product reliability.

The new stainless steel bearings are said to be resilient against these cleaning agents. The magic formula? Combining that “100% stainless steel insert design” with a “revolutionary top coat”, known as KleenTec, ABB says, which is made to protect against corrosion. “The smooth housing without a grease fitting minimizes contamination harbour points and is easy to clean. The bearing is sealed and lubricated for life to minimize maintenance costs.”

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