Busted Five Common Myths about Variable Frequency Drives

Posted on 23rd Feb 2023

Are you considering investing in a Variable Frequency Drive (VFD) but have questions and concerns? You're not alone! There are a lot of misconceptions and myths surrounding VFDs, so let's set the record straight. In this blog post, we'll bust five common myths about Variable Frequency Drives so you can make an informed decision.

1) Myth #1: VFDs are only for large motors

One of the most common misconceptions about Variable Frequency Drives (VFDs) is that they are only used for large motors. This is simply not true. In fact, Darwin Motion VFD can be used with motors of any size, from small ones to large ones. VFDs are also often used with servo drives, which are designed to work with very small motors. The size of the motor is not an indication of whether or not a VFD should be used; it all depends on the specific application. So, no matter what size motor you have, you may be able to use a VFD to control it.

2) Myth #2: VFDs are only for three-phase motors

Contrary to popular belief, Variable Frequency Drives (VFDs) are not limited to three-phase motors. In fact, VFDs can be used with single-phase and even servo drive motors. For example, a single-phase motor might have limited torque or low efficiency, but with a VFD it can have superior performance, allowing it to work better with the load. Similarly, a servo drive motor could benefit from the speed control of a VFD, resulting in smoother operation and improved positioning accuracy.

Overall, VFDs offer a wide range of flexibility when it comes to motor control, so don't limit yourself to three-phase motors only! With the right type of VFD, you can find the best solution for your application, regardless of whether it is single-phase or servo drive.

3) Myth #3: All VFDs are created equal

It's easy to assume that all Variable Frequency Drives (VFDs) are the same, but that simply isn't true. While VFDs may appear to be similar, there are many differences between them that should not be overlooked. VFDs come in a variety of shapes and sizes, and they can be used for different applications. There are standard VFDs, servo drives, and AC motor drives. Each type has its own unique features and capabilities, so it's important to choose the right one for the job. Servo drives are more expensive than other types, but they offer precise control over speed, torque, and position. They are ideal for high-precision applications such as robotic arms or CNC machinery. Standard VFDs are less expensive but are limited to basic speed control. AC motor drives are designed for larger motors and provide efficient power conversion for applications such as pumps or compressors. Ultimately, it is important to understand the differences between these various types of drives so you can make an informed decision about which one is best for your needs.

4) Myth #4: VFDs are maintenance free

Contrary to popular belief, VFDs are not maintenance free. They may be easier to maintain than a servo drive or other motor-driven systems, but they still require regular maintenance and upkeep. If the VFD is used in an industrial setting, it should be inspected regularly for any signs of wear or damage. Any worn components should be replaced immediately in order to keep the system running smoothly. Additionally, if the VFD is used in a hazardous environment, such as near water or in extreme temperatures, special care should be taken to make sure that the VFD is kept clean and free from dust, dirt, and other debris. Finally, even if the VFD is in an enclosed environment, it should still be checked on a regular basis for any signs of corrosion or excessive heat. By performing these simple tasks, you can ensure that your VFD will run smoothly and reliably for many years to come.

5) Myth #5: You need an engineer to install a VFD

Many people think that you need a professional engineer to install a Variable Frequency Drive (VFD) or a Servo Drive. However, the truth is that with the right tools and knowledge, anyone can install a VFD. While there may be some special considerations depending on your particular application, basic VFD installation is relatively straightforward and requires minimal technical expertise.

If you're feeling confident enough to install a VFD yourself, make sure you understand your application, the requirements of the VFD and any relevant safety regulations. It's also important to review all manufacturer instructions carefully as mentioned by Darwin Motion and to make sure you have the right tools for the job.

If you do decide to enlist an engineer for your VFD installation, it's important to find one who is familiar with VFDs and the particular application you have in mind. An experienced engineer should be able to make sure your installation is done correctly and safely, as well as advise on any additional modifications you may need.