Preventive Maintenance Tips For Transformers

An electronic transformer is one of the most important and highly expensive units of a machine. Hence, getting efficient performance and a high product life will require regular maintenance and checkups of the machinery. It is important to understand the type of transformer maintenance which will help prevent any technical glitches and will ensure high performance. Annual maintenance of the transformer is not enough, you will have to ensure that you put in a few checks and carry out certain tests on a daily, weekly and monthly basis.

There are two different types of transformer checks and maintenance. The first one is done regularly and the second one is only required during an emergency. When you ensure that the maintenance checkups are regularly done, then you might not be required to undergo the breakdown maintenance process and this will help save downtime. Bill Johnson from Utility Service ( explains that transformers need to be cared for and maintained properly and consistently to avoid electrical problems. When the transformer in your production unit functions efficiently, you can ensure that there is no interruption in the production process and thus, no loss of revenue.

Monthly maintenance checks

There are many types of maintenance checks which should be conducted on a transformer in your unit. Here are a few checks which need to be performed every month.

• Ensure that the breathing holes inside the silica gel breather are clean for proper and efficient breathing action at all times.
• The oil level inside the oil cap should be checked every month so that it does not drop below the specific limit and you will be able to avoid any damage to the transformer.
• If the electrical transformer comes with an oil filling bushing, you need to ensure that the oil is present and is at the right level.

Daily testing

There are three types of maintenance tests which should be run daily.

• If you see any leakage, you need to seal it immediately.
• Check the oil level of the magnetic oil gauge in the main tank as well as the conservator tank and maintain it to keep it at the desired level.
• Replace the silica gel in the transformer if you notice that its color has changed to pink.

Annual maintenance

There are certain checks which you need to perform at least once in a year in order to ensure that the transformer is working in an optimal condition. You also need to inspect the oil pumps as well as the air fans at least once in the year. There are additional checks you need to perform.

• Clean the bushings of the electrical transformer using a soft cotton cloth every year.
• Clean out the inside of the marshaling boxes annually. In addition, check proper functioning of the space and the illumination heaters. Your terminal connections of control and relay wiring should be tightened annually.
• Check the oil condition carefully once a year. To do this, you need an oil sample and check it for moisture content as well as the dielectric strength. When you notice that its dielectric strength is low while the moisture content is high, you need to replace the oil.
• Make sure that the control switches, relays and alarms in addition to their circuits are cleaned using a cleaning agent.
• Check the proper function of press release device and Buchholz.
• Check the pockets for winding temperature indicator as well as oil temperature indicator. If it does not have adequate oil, you will have to top up if necessary.

Half yearly maintenance checks

Your transformer will have to be tested every six months for sludge content, flash point, water content, DDA, IFT, acidity and its dielectric strength in addition to its resistance towards transformer oil.

The transformer is an important part of the equipment which is installed in the unit. You will have to check the insulation resistance annually. Check the CT secondary connections and clean and tighten them to ensure that the secondary currents have the lowest resistance path. You will have to carry out a thermo vision scan of the primary terminals as well as the top dome of the live CT will have to be checked annually.

The transformer may work without any interruption but that does not mean that it requires no maintenance. The consistent damage of electrical vents as well as the lack of minimal maintenance could accelerate the failure of the transformer and it could put you into big trouble.

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