Caster and Wheel Maintenance Guide
Official Guide on Caring for your Caster and Caster Wheels
Casters and Wheels are subject to wear due to many abusive applications from over-loading, abuse, weather and temperature changes, and even chemicals. Protecting your investment in Casters and Wheels is very easy if you follow our precautionary steps below.
Caster Yoke / Rig / Frame & Fasteners:
- Look for loose bolts and nuts and look for broken welds
- Frame Distortion and Bends due to over-loading the Caster or abuse due to impact shock loads and drops. A bent Caster Frame can cause pre-mature wheel failure because of abnormal loads on one or two casters. This can also cause a liability for cart or equipment failure.
- If the casters are Stem Mounted, bolted or riveted in place, make sure the legs of the equipment are not bent and mounting bolts are properly secured.
- Always use Lock-nuts or Lock-washers when mounting Casters. Loctite can be applied prior for an extra step of precautionary safety.
- If using casters with a Rubber Expandable Adapter please be sure the adapter is fully expanded and tightened in your tubular equipment or legs.
- All Caster and Wheel Bearings need to be properly lubricated with a high-quality all purpose grease or a food grade grease if being used in kitchen and food service environments. If the application is for bakery, powder coating, autoclave, or steam cleaning you will either need to remove the grease or use a high temperature grease that can handle the temperature range of your application.
- Most of our industrial casters 2" width wheels and wider come with zerk / grease fittings in the wheels, raceway bearing, and zerk axle offering you three grease points for lubrication.
- Normal conditions may require lubrication every 6 months, but once a month may be necessary in extreme applications, such as corrosive or exceptionally dirty environments.
- Cart washing and exposure to water and chemicals may require immediate lubrication after each wash down.
- Always keep spare wheels and bearings on hand to avoid costly downtime.
- Inspect all caster wheels for tread wear which may include flat spots, embedded material including screws, metal chips, and sharp objects that may have been embedded in the wheel. Thread guards are recommended to help delay the build up of dirt, debris, hairs, and foreign materials from entering the wheels bearing and axle housing.
- Check for loose Casters or Locked Wheels may also produce flat spots.
- Make sure the Rigid Casters are not being dragged sideways or experience side impact, if this is the case use a swivel caster instead.
- Replace wheels and/ or Caster to avoid erratic rolling. After inspection and making corrections, be sure axle nut us properly tightened.
- Always use Lock Washers and nuts on all axles to prevent them from becoming loose.
- Discard abused and damaged wheels and replace immediately to prevent further damage to caster housing and equipment.
- If swivel assembly including the raceway bearing housing comes loose it will need to be replaced.
- If casters has a king bolt nut, make sure it is securely fastened.
- If swivel assembly does not turn freely, check raceways for corrosion or dirt.
- If equipment has rigid casters at one end, make sure caster housing/rig is not bent.
- When necessary, re-tighten caster mounting bolts and, if casters are welded to equipment, check the welded elements for cracks.
Proper Equipment Usage / Shock Loading / Excessive High Speeds:
- Place loads gently onto any cart, truck,. or bin attached to any casters. Overloading or dropping loads (shock loading) on carts, trucks, or bins may casue sudden wheel or equipment failure.
- High Speeds on rough terrain can quickly create severe damage to tread and wheels.
Extending the life of your Caster and Wheel with simple preventative maintenance tips and tricks. Learn how to properly lubricate your caster, wheel, and bearings to save you money from buying replacement casters and wheels less frequently.