Automotive asset-specific solutions: Carrier drives

2022 best practices guide

Table of Contents

Carrier Drives

The Problem

Carrier Drives are critical-path assets that can cause a total line shutdown. If a carrier drive goes down, the result is a total line shutdown causing extended lost production. With miles of carrier chain throughout a plant, it can be difficult to pinpoint the breakdown. These problems cannot always be caught right away through traditional monitoring.

Image of a carrier drive

Cost of Asset Failures

  • $905,000/hour downtime cost
  • 3 hours downtime, on average
  • Safety incidents

Savings Potential

  • $2,715,000 per asset
  • $97,740,000 per plant
Asset Blind Spots

There are several inherent challenges related to monitoring carrier drives.

Vibration frequencies are often undetectable to the human ear and eye.

The asset is critical-path and cannot be easily maintained.

A problem can occur in the drive, gearbox, chain, bearings, or sprocket.

A New Approach to Carrier Drives

The traditional way of catching failures is via time-based PMs. These PMs are not always effective, and issues can be missed. This practice is not only dangerous but also inefficient.

Current and voltage input nodes can close the gap in monitoring carrier drives. Current input nodes (CINs) can directly monitor the current coming from the drive. This measurement aids in identifying breakdowns before they happen and, if they do, can help determine their location much faster.

Carrier Drive with Signals


  • A minimum of one CIN and three V3 sensors are used
  • The V3 sensors are placed on the motor, gearbox, and bearings
  • CINs are used to monitor the amperage drawn by the motors


  • Indicators (current measurements are used to determine fault signals)
  • Sensor configuration
  • Dashboards
  • Reporting

Customer Inputs

  • Voltage and current readings from the CIN are fed into SMARTdiagnostics to be viewed by the operator
  • Vibration data from the V3 sensors is used to detect faults within the motors and gearbox


  • Sentry quarterly site visits
  • Sentry in-person training
  • KCF Academy
  • Customer training and handbooks
  • Asset playbook

I am excited to drive change in partnership with you, find new efficiencies, take on complex challenges, and increase uptime across the Ford network while making your team's work life more engaging and fulfilling. Please contact me to discuss your unique asset challenges!

Book a Call With Me


Chalice Walther

Sr. Strategic Account Manager