The NTM Service Department occasionally receives a gutter machine damaged because of poor maintenance. As a result, gutter machine parts need replacement. Because it’s due to neglect and the damaged parts are not covered under warranty, it’s an added cost to the owner, on top of lost productivity when the gutter machine is out of service.
Simply following a regular routine of preventative gutter machine maintenance can save you from paying extra to replace damaged parts and losing work time. This should include daily, weekly, monthly, and yearly maintenance. Download our Machine Maintenance Schedule to help you stay on track.
Here at New Tech Machinery (NTM), we’ve been building and servicing seamless gutter machines for over 30 years. Some of our people are the original engineers of modern portable rollformers that use polyurethane drive rollers. As pioneers in the seamless gutter machine industry, we understand the importance of regular maintenance to ensure seamless gutter perfection.
Five Common Problems from Neglecting Preventative Maintenance
Neglecting preventive maintenance can lead to five common problems that we want to help you avoid.
1. Dirty Drive Rollers – Picture this: black marks on the bottom of your gutter, time wasted cleaning them off, and improper roller function. Neglecting to keep your drive rollers clean and smooth allows dirt to act as an unwelcome lubricant, affecting the machine’s performance and compromising the gutter’s quality.
2. Dirty Forming Rollers – Forming rollers carrying dirt? It’s a recipe for disaster. The dirt can imprint onto the material, ruining the gutters as they’re formed, and even overlubricating the machine might lead to the material slipping through, leaving marks that require extra effort to wipe clean. Keep your forming rollers pristine for flawless gutters.
3. Not Lubricating the Shear – An unlubricated shear can cause bad cuts, mar the shear blade’s face, and even ruin the dies. Think about the cost of redoing metal that didn’t cut right! Ensure you lubricate the shear assembly blade and dies at least once a week under normal conditions to save yourself the headache and expenses.
4. Unlubricated/Unadjusted Chains – Chains won’t move correctly if too tight or too loose, causing wear and tear on shafts and sprockets. Keep those chains snug but not too tight, and lubricate them regularly to prevent rust and maintain smooth operation.
5. Poor Maintenance of Reels – When it comes to reels, keeping them greased and moving smoothly is vital. A tight reel stresses the coil, leading to defects in the gutter metal. Avoid these issues with proper reel maintenance.
Preventive Maintenance Steps for Your Portable Seamless Gutter Machine
At NTM, we’ve got you covered with a comprehensive maintenance schedule to keep your gutter machine in top-notch condition. Here are the essential steps:
Daily Gutter Machine Maintenance Check
- Always keep covers on during operation and storage. The covers are for operator safety, but also protect the internal components of the machine from the environment.
- Avoid storage of the machine outdoors for long periods of time. Cover the machine with a tarp or machine cover (optional) for protection. Provide good ventilation to prevent condensation and rust.
- Keep the machine clean. This will increase the life of the machine and make maintenance easier. A clean machine will provide a clean product. Properly clean drive rollers.
- Before operating the machine, visually inspect for foreign objects or debris or anything unusual. If something doesn’t seem correct, inspect and remedy prior to operation.
- Lubricate the chains a minimum of every 40 hours of operation. It is preferable to use a dry chain lube.
- Keep Entry Guide Carriage clean and lubricate as needed with Spray Lube.
- Keep cradles lubricated with Clear Grease.
Regular Gutter Machine Maintenance
- Regular Cleaning: Keeping your gutter machine clean is vital to its proper functioning. After every use, make sure to remove any debris, dirt, or metal shavings that may have accumulated on the rollers, shear, or forming belts. Clean the machine’s exterior as well, ensuring no dust or grime affects its components.
- Lubrication: Proper lubrication is crucial to prevent excessive wear and tear on moving parts. Consult your machine’s user manual to identify the points that require lubrication and use the recommended lubricant. Over-lubrication can also cause issues and affect other machine parts, so follow the guidelines closely.
- Inspect Electrical Components: Routinely inspect the machine’s electrical components, such as switches, connectors, and wires, to ensure there are no signs of damage or wear. Faulty electrical connections can cause unexpected breakdowns and pose safety risks.
- Blade Maintenance: Inspect the blades regularly for signs of dullness or damage. Sharp blades are essential for clean cuts and prevent unnecessary strain on the machine’s motor. Make sure the shear is kept lubricated every 30 to 50 cuts using Super Lube® Multi-Purpose Synthetic Grease (LUBE-GEL).
- Check Hydraulic Systems: For machines with hydraulic systems, monitor the fluid levels and check for leaks. Address any issues promptly to prevent further damage to the machine.
- Store Properly: When not in use, store your portable seamless gutter machine in a dry, sheltered location with the covers on. Exposure to the elements can lead to corrosion and premature deterioration.
Final Thoughts on Gutter Machine Preventative Maintenance
By adhering to these simple maintenance practices, you can ensure the longevity of your gutter machine, maximize productivity, and avoid costly repairs. At NTM, we’re committed to helping you keep your business running smoothly for generations to come. So, download our Machine Maintenance Schedule to stay on track.
For questions on our Mach II 5”, 6”, 5”/6” Combo, or any of our rollforming machines or accessories, contact us.