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How to Handle Machine Component Failure Modes

Table of Contents

After running for a period of time, machine components are bound to experience some failures. These machine failures generally fall into six categories: wear, fatigue, corrosion, vibration, and noise. In the event of these failures, how should we handle them? In this article, we will briefly discuss how to deal with machine component failures and how to maintain them in regular situations.

machine component failure modes
machine component failure modes

How to deal with machine component wear?

(1) Normal wear

Friction between components: Ensure cleanliness and lubrication of the parts.

Wear caused by hard particles: Maintain cleanliness between the parts and cover exposed areas.

Fatigue wear of components under long-term alternating loads: Eliminate clearances, choose suitable lubricants, reduce additional vibrations, and improve component accuracy.

Corrosion of components by chemical substances: Remove harmful chemicals and improve the corrosion resistance of the parts.

Changes in surface metallographic structure or fit properties of components under high-temperature conditions: Seek ways to improve working conditions or use materials that are resistant to high temperatures and wear to make the parts.

machine component wear
machine component wear

(2) Abnormal wear

Repair or manufacturing quality not meeting design requirements: Conduct strict quality inspections.
Violation of operating procedures: Familiarize yourself with mechanical performance and operate with care.

What is machine components fatigue?

Fatigue is the initiation and propagation of material cracks caused by cyclic loading. Fatigue progresses through three stages: crack initiation, crack propagation, and failure.

  • Stage 1: Crack Initiation

This is the beginning of fatigue failure. It involves the generation of small cracks or defects within the material due to cyclic loading. These cracks typically initiate at locations of stress concentration, such as notches, sharp corners, or surface defects. Cyclic loading induces localized plastic deformation, promoting crack initiation. These cracks are often microscopic and not easily detectable.

  • Stage 2: Crack Propagation

The cracks generated in the first stage start to grow and propagate within the material. As the crack extends, it interacts with the microstructure of the material, encountering obstacles such as grain boundaries and impurities, which can cause the crack to change direction or branch out. The characteristic of the crack propagation stage is slow crack growth until reaching a critical size.

  • Stage 3: Failure

In the final stage, when the crack reaches a critical size and the material can no longer withstand the applied cyclic load, the ultimate failure occurs. At this point, the remaining cross-sectional area of the material is insufficient to support the applied stress, leading to rapid crack propagation and catastrophic failure. The final failure is typically characterized by fracture surfaces exhibiting features such as shear lips, beach marks, and striations. It is worth noting that the number of cycles required for fatigue failure depends on various factors, including material properties, stress levels, surface finish, and loading conditions.

machine component fatigue
machine component fatigue

How to deal with fatigue of machine components?

When mechanical components experience fatigue issues, the approach to handling them depends on the severity of fatigue damage and the criticality of the components. Here are some common methods of handling fatigue:

Replacement of components: If the fatigue damage to the mechanical component is severe and exceeds the safe usage limit, the best solution may be to replace the component with a new one.

Repair and reinforcement: For components with minor fatigue damage, repair and reinforcement measures can be taken, such as repairing cracks, filling holes, or applying reinforcement materials.

Redesign: If fatigue problems in mechanical components occur repeatedly, redesigning the component can be considered by improving geometric shapes, material selection, or stress distribution to enhance its fatigue strength.

Increase monitoring and maintenance: Strengthening the monitoring and maintenance of mechanical components can help identify fatigue issues early and take appropriate measures for repair or replacement.


How to handle machine components corrosion?

machine components corrosion
machine components corrosion


The approach to handling corrosion of machine components depends on the type, extent, and specific circumstances of the corrosion. Here are some common methods for handling corrosion of machine components:

Cleaning and rust removal: Firstly, the corroded area should be cleaned to remove surface impurities and dirt. Appropriate cleaning agents and tools such as brushes, cloths, or spraying equipment can be used. Then, mechanical means such as scraping, grinding, or sandblasting can be employed to remove the corroded layer and restore the smoothness of the component surface.

Anti-corrosion coatings: To protect machine components from corrosion, applying an anti-corrosion coating is effective. Common anti-corrosion coatings include paints, coatings, polymers, rubber, plating (such as galvanization, chroming, and electroplating), and thermal spray coatings (such as hot-dip zinc and polymer thermal spraying). These coatings provide a physical barrier, preventing air, water, or chemicals from coming into contact with the metal surface and thus preventing corrosion.

Anti-corrosion oils and lubricants: Proper anti-corrosion oils and lubricants can provide protection and lubrication mechanisms, reducing the occurrence of corrosion. These products can fill in small surface defects, forming protective films that isolate the metal surface from the environment.

Corrosion treatment: Chemical treatment methods can be used to handle corrosion. For example, acid cleaning can remove oxides and corroded layers from the metal surface. Alkaline cleaning can neutralize acidic residues and prevent further corrosion. Electrochemical methods like anodic protection and cathodic protection can protect the metal surface by applying current or using electrochemical substances.

Replacement of damaged components: If the corrosion on machine components is too severe and beyond repair, considering the replacement of the damaged components may be necessary. The new components should be made of corrosion-resistant materials or appropriate corrosion prevention measures should be taken.

How to deal with machine component vibration?

machine component vibration
machine component vibration

Dealing with machine component vibration requires considering the cause of the vibration and the specific circumstances. Here are some common methods for addressing machine component vibration:

Balancing: Imbalance is a common cause of machine component vibration. Performing dynamic balancing or static balancing can reduce vibration. Dynamic balancing involves balancing the components while the machine is running, while static balancing is done when the machine is stopped.

Damping and isolation: Implementing damping and isolation measures can reduce vibration transmission and interference. This can include the use of dampers, isolation pads, isolation mounts, and so on. These measures help absorb or dissipate vibration energy, reducing machine component vibration.

Inspecting and repairing loose parts: Loose parts can cause vibration. Regularly inspect machine components, especially connection parts and fasteners, to ensure they are securely tightened and not loose. If loose parts are found, they should be promptly repaired or re-tightened.

Adjusting operating conditions: Adjusting the machine’s operating conditions, such as reducing speed, adjusting the load, or changing operating parameters, may help reduce vibration. Optimize operating conditions based on the machine’s specific situation and requirements.

Lubrication and maintenance: Proper lubrication and maintenance are crucial for reducing vibration. Ensure machine components are adequately lubricated and follow the manufacturer’s recommendations for regular maintenance and upkeep. This includes cleaning, lubricating, and replacing worn-out parts, among other tasks.

Strengthening and reinforcing structures: For machine components experiencing frequent vibration, reinforcing and strengthening the structure may be necessary to improve stiffness and vibration resistance. This can be achieved by adding supports, strengthening connection parts, using rigid materials, and so forth.

Using vibration control techniques: For significant vibration issues, specialized vibration control techniques may be required. This includes active vibration control, passive vibration control, vibration absorption, and vibration isolation techniques.

How to deal with machine component noise?

machine component noise
machine component noise

Dealing with machine component noise requires considering the causes of the noise and the specific situation. Here are some common methods for dealing with machine component noise:

Acoustic isolation: Use soundproofing materials, acoustic enclosures, or sound barriers to isolate the noise source. These materials and facilities can absorb or reflect the noise, reducing the propagation of noise into the surrounding environment.

Vibration reduction and isolation: Taking measures to reduce vibrations in machine components can minimize noise generation. This can involve using vibration dampers, isolation pads, or vibration mounts. These measures help absorb or disperse vibration energy, reducing noise radiation.

Acoustic optimization design: Consider noise control during the design process of machine components. This includes optimizing the structure, reducing resonance, and minimizing airflow noise. Through proper design, noise generation and propagation can be reduced.

Maintenance and upkeep: Regular maintenance and upkeep of machine components are crucial steps in reducing noise. Ensuring proper lubrication, tightening, and periodic replacement of worn parts can minimize noise caused by friction, looseness, and other factors.

Noise control equipment and technology: Use noise control equipment and technology to reduce the propagation of noise. This can include sound-absorbing materials, mufflers, and noise reduction devices. The specific choices depend on the requirements of the noise source and the environment.

Operation and work environment control: Take measures to control machine operation and the work environment to minimize noise generation and propagation. For example, reducing machine operating speed, adjusting loads, or using sound isolation devices to separate noise.

Training and awareness raising: Train operators and personnel to increase awareness and understanding of the hazards of noise. Proper operation and use of machine components can reduce noise generation.

Regarding Machine Parts – Frequently Asked Questions

When it comes to machine parts, there are often several questions that people have. Please refer to the detailed answers below.

Machine Component
Machine Component

How do you choose the right machine parts for your project?

Choosing the correct machine components is crucial for the success of your project. Here are some basic steps for selecting machine parts:

  • Understand project requirements

Firstly, you need to clarify the requirements and objectives of your project. This includes determining the machine’s functionality, performance requirements, operating environment, and so on. Understanding these factors will help you choose the appropriate machine parts.

  • Research available options

Conduct market research to learn about the machine part options currently available. Look for suppliers, manufacturers, and online resources to find the parts that suit your project.

  • Consider quality and reliability

Quality and reliability are key considerations when selecting machine parts. Ensure that the parts you choose have a good track record of quality and reliability to ensure long-term performance and dependability of the machine.

  • Compatibility and integration

Ensure that the selected parts are compatible with the other components of your machine and can be seamlessly integrated. Consider the dimensions, interfaces, and connection methods of the parts to ensure they can be properly installed and operated.

  • Performance and technical specifications

Evaluate the performance and technical specifications of the parts to ensure they meet the requirements of your project. This may involve considerations such as power, speed, accuracy, load capacity, and so on.

  • Cost-effectiveness

Consider the cost-effectiveness of the parts. Balance the price of the parts with their quality and performance, and choose the best combination to meet your budget and project needs.

  • Availability and support

Evaluate the availability of the parts and the support provided by the suppliers. Ensure that the selected parts are easily obtainable, and the supplier can provide technical support, after-sales service, and spare parts support.



After running for a certain period of time, machine components commonly experience the following types of malfunctions. However, the actual failures may vary depending on the specific type of components, working conditions, and application environment. Regular maintenance and inspection can help identify potential failures early and take appropriate measures to repair or replace components, ensuring machine reliability and performance.

Easiahome offers CNC machining services across the US!
Please contact us today to see how we can help your project.


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