Sealed bearings are designed to protect the bearing from contaminants and retain lubricant within the bearing. In order to lubricate sealed bearings, a needle applicator can be used to inject a small amount of grease into the bearing.
In this blog, we shall discuss the importance of greasing sealed bearings, the types of grease used for this purpose, why greasing sealed bearings with needle is important, how to grease sealed bearing with the needle, and how to tell if sealed bearings are properly greased.
The significance of Greasing Sealed Bearings?
Greasing sealed bearings is important for several reasons:
- Lubrication: Sealed bearings rely on lubrication to reduce friction and wear between the moving parts within the bearing. Without proper lubrication, the bearing will experience increased wear and may fail prematurely.
- Protection against contamination: Sealed bearings are designed to protect the bearing from contaminants such as dirt, dust, and moisture. However, if the seal becomes damaged or the lubricant becomes contaminated, the bearing may become compromised.
- Temperature control: Lubrication also helps to dissipate heat generated by the bearing, which can extend the life of the bearing and improve performance.
- Reducing noise: Proper lubrication also helps to reduce noise caused by friction and vibration within the bearing.
- Maintenance: Regularly greasing sealed bearings is an important part of preventative maintenance and helps to ensure the longevity of the bearing and the equipment it is used in.
- Cost-effective: Regularly greasing sealed bearings can save costs in the long run by preventing premature bearing failure, and reducing downtime and maintenance costs.
What type of Grease to use on Sealed Bearings?
There are several types of grease that can be used on sealed bearings, and the best choice will depend on the specific application and operating conditions. Some of the most common types of grease used on sealed bearings include:
- Mineral oil-based grease: This is the most common type of grease used on sealed bearings. It is made from mineral oil and a thickener and is available in a wide range of consistencies and properties.
- Lithium-based grease: This type of grease is made from lithium and a thickener, and is often used in high-temperature and high-load applications.
- Synthetic oil-based grease: This type of grease is made from synthetic oils and a thickener, and is often used in high-performance applications where extended service life is required.
- Grease for High-temperature: There are also some special greases available for high-temperature applications, such as those in ovens, kilns, and other industrial equipment.
Some grease may be suitable for some applications, but it may not be suitable for others. It’s always best to consult the equipment or bearing manufacturer’s specifications or consult with a lubrication expert to determine the best type of grease for your specific application.
Why Greasing Sealed Bearings with Needle is Important?
Greasing sealed bearings with needle applicators is an important aspect of maintaining the proper function and longevity of the bearing and the equipment it is used in.
A needle applicator allows for precise and controlled application of the grease, which helps to minimize the risk of over-lubrication, which can cause damage to the bearing.
Additionally, using a needle applicator reduces the amount of grease that may be wasted by overspray or excess grease, which can be both environmentally and economically wasteful.
Proper lubrication is essential for reducing friction and wears between the moving parts within the bearing, which helps to extend the service life of the bearing and improve overall performance. It also helps to dissipate heat generated by the bearing, which can further extend the life of the bearing.
Additionally, sealed bearings are designed to protect the bearing from contaminants such as dirt, dust, and moisture, but if the seal becomes damaged or the lubricant becomes contaminated, the bearing may become compromised.
Using a needle applicator ensures that the lubricant is delivered to the specific location where it is needed, preventing lubrication, and making sure that the lubricant stays inside the sealed bearing, keeping it protected from contaminants.
How to Greasing Sealed Bearings with Needle?
- Clean the area around the bearing: Before lubricating the sealed bearing, it is important to clean the area around the bearing to remove any dirt, dust, or debris that could contaminate the lubricant or damage the seal.
- Determine the appropriate lubricant: Identify the appropriate lubricant for the bearing, based on the manufacturer’s specifications and the operating conditions of the equipment.
- Obtain a needle applicator: A needle applicator is a tool that allows for precise and controlled application of lubricant into the sealed bearing.
- Remove the sealing cap: Carefully remove the sealing cap or plug from the bearing, being careful not to damage the seal.
- Inject lubricant: Use the needle applicator to inject a small amount of lubricant into the bearing, being careful not to over-lubricate.
- Replace the sealing cap: Once the lubricant has been injected, replace the sealing cap or plug to seal the bearing and protect it from contaminants.
- Repeat the process: Repeat the process as needed or according to the manufacturer’s recommended maintenance schedule.
Related Guide: Grease Types and Grades? What You Need to Know 
How to tell if Sealed Bearings are properly Greased?
There are several ways to tell if sealed bearings are properly greased:
- Visual Inspection: Look for signs of leakage or excess grease around the bearing. If the seal is intact and the bearing appears to be well lubricated, it is likely that the bearing is properly greased.
- Noise: Listen for any unusual noise or vibration coming from the bearing. Properly lubricated bearings should run quietly and smoothly.
- Temperature: Check the temperature of the bearing. If the bearing is running hot, it may be an indication that it is not properly lubricated or that the lubricant is inadequate for the application.
- Vibration: Check for excessive vibration. Properly lubricated bearings should run smoothly with minimal vibration.
- Wear: Check for signs of wear or damage on the bearing or equipment. Proper lubrication helps to reduce wear on the bearing and the equipment it is used in.
Even if the bearing is properly lubricated it can fail due to other reasons such as misalignment, overloading, and improper installation. Therefore, it’s always best to consult the equipment or bearing manufacturer’s specifications or consult with a lubrication expert if you are unsure if the bearing is properly lubricated.
Greasing sealed bearings with needle applicators is an important aspect of preventative maintenance, it ensures optimal performance and longevity of the bearing and equipment, it helps to prevent premature bearing failure, reducing downtime and maintenance costs, and it is also environmentally and economically efficient.