Old Electric Motors: How To Decide Whether To Scrap Or Keep

In comparison to other large pieces of industrial equipment – a motor may seem like a small investment. However, if a replacement was decided upon for every equipment which malfunctions – then, it’ll soon take a toll on your business finances.

At times, the best option may be to seek an engineer for electric motor overhauling or other such repairing services to fix your equipment. Still, the fact of the matter is the decision highly depends on your equipment’s condition. In the event that your motor’s parts are too damaged – you should then look for a replacement immediately.

On the other hand, this may present itself as an opportunity to upgrade your motor or simply fix a particular part of it to get it back to its original condition. So, which is the best decision to make? Read on to find out.


While it may be true that a newer motor; an upgraded and more efficient version of the brand – may be an excellent choice in terms of operational costs – it may not always be the most cost-effective solution. In certain situations, it may be much ideal to simply invest in preventative care and maintenance as the costs involved can be much lesser.

You could look towards reconditioned parts – certain pieces of equipment are properly serviced, cleaned, and upgraded to an improved version of itself during the running of industrial operations. Specific examples include adding a Variable Speed Drive (VSD), which is excellent at enhancing the energy consumption levels of equipment.

Though motor rewinding service, the replacement of certain equipment parts or the installation of other useful parts may give your motor a new lease of life once more – if the equipment keeps experiencing unexpected breakdowns – a complete replacement may be a more sensible option.

Equipment downtime

When you decide to go for a motor replacement – you should be aware that this entails a certain amount of downtime or pre-planning. This may result in ongoing expenses in the long run and even cause productions to halt temporarily.

Minor repairs usually require less time as compared to ordering and installing a brand new electric motor – as this will result in more downtime.

If an electric motor is indispensable in your business operations, you should either replace your current equipment with an exact match of the existing model or do a repair. This will open up time for a future replacement as pre-planning takes up lots of time. Only then, will you be able to properly install a new electric motor.

Beginning torque

Typically, old motors have a much higher starting torque in comparison to those of new motors. In other words, you would have to install a new drive into your existing equipment or machine if you were to do a replacement, and this may not necessarily be the most convenient choice.

To maintain the torque and lower the cost of electricity expended on start-up at the same time, installing a soft start or a Variable-frequency Drive (VFD) is a good option as incentives provided by power companies can go up to as high as 100% of the original cost of the VFD.

All in all, there’s really no right or wrong answer; it just depends on the state of your electric motor. If you were to opt for a repair – know that your brand matters as well. The same goes for the installation process. For instance, a Siemens or Cummins generator installation tells you the brand – but you’ll still need to have an experienced engineer to step in and handle the process appropriately.

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