What Is an Idler Roller?
Idler rollers, or sometimes simply known as conveyor rollers, are cylindrical-shaped bars that run along and underneath a conveyor belt.
There are many different types of idler rollers with varying functions. Usually, idler rollers aid in the supporting of weight and impact of the materials being transported along the belt.
They also assist in the smooth, continuous movement of the material along the belt.
Idler rollers can be self-aligning and assist in maintaining the belt tracking.
Depending on the structure and shape of the conveyor belt, the rollers are usually positioned within a metal frame and are known as idler sets.
Different Types of Idler Rollers
Idler rollers can be manufactured to suit almost any conveyor application. Some variables include bearing brand, bearing size, diameter or series, wall thickness, seal type and material type. Different variables can be selected and customised to suit your application’s standards and specifications.
Different idler rollers are used for various processes, and some determining factors could be material type, specific gravity of the material and lump size.
Plain Idler Rollers
Plain rollers are the most common type of idler roller. They are used to support and shape the conveyor belt. Plain rollers can be fitted to the load side of the belt in trough, tracking and transition frames. Plain rollers can also be fitted to the return side of the belt.
Tapered Idler Rollers
Installed on both the load or return side of the belt, tapered idler rollers assist with conveyor belt tracking when they are installed in a tracking frame.
Rubber-Coated Idler Rollers
The name for the rubber-coated idler roller is derived from the rubber that is vulcanised directly to the roller. Rubber-coated idler rollers are tear, impact and friction-resistant and therefore have a higher durability than non-coated idler rollers.
Rubber Disc Idler Rollers
A rubber disk idler roller has durable rubber discs positioned at regular intervals along the roller. On the two ends of the roller, the rubber discs are bundled together to provide more support for the conveyor belt edge.
The spaced-out positioning of the rubber disks is to separate any carryback (leftover materials adhered to the belt after a scraper has performed its cleaning function). This helps to reduce material build-up on the outside of the roller, a common cause of belt mistracking.
Rubber Screw Idler Rollers
Rubber screw idler rollers incorporate an anti-tear rubber coating in a continuous screw pattern along the roller. The screw pattern assists with the removal of material build-up on the belt and helps maintain belt-tracking.
Steel Screw Idler Rollers
Similar to the rubber screw idler rollers, the steel screw idler rollers have the same continuous screw-patterned coating along the roller. However, its component is steel instead of rubber.
The screw pattern assists with the removal of material build-up on the belt and helps maintain belt-tracking.
Steel screws have a greater scrubbing action than rubber screws, and thus steel screw idler rollers are more effective where carryback is heavy.
An example of where a steel screw idler may be effective is an application where scrapers cannot be used to clean the belt, such as a mobile plant conveyor. At a mobile plant conveyor, fitting a scraper is not possible due to insufficient room. Another example is in a folding conveyor, which may prohibit the fitting of such devices.
Impact Idler Rollers
Impact idler rollers are heavy duty idler rollers made up of thicker, high durability rubber discs surrounding a sturdy steel inner tube.
When installed at the material loading point, the impact idler roller helps reduce the impact forces caused by falling material. In turn, this helps reduce damage to the roller and prolongs its use.
DYNA Engineering Designed Idler Rollers
DYNA Engineering design our own idler rollers with lifelong durability in mind. They are manufactured using high quality ERW tube.
Precision pressed bearing housings, quality double-sealed bearings and labyrinth seals all ensure the high standard of DYNA manufactured idlers.
DYNA Engineering idlers adhere to strict quality controls and use the latest manufacturing and equipment.
This achieves superior life, reduced rolling resistance and ultimately delivers lower operating costs to our customers.
For information on the DYNA idlers, check out our Idler Rollers page.