The Hidden Issue with VFDs: Harmonics

June 27, 2024

The Hidden Issue with VFDs: Harmonics

Variable Frequency Drives (VFDs) are transforming how we control motor speed, making processes more efficient and adaptable. However, they come with a hidden challenge: harmonic distortion. Traditional motors are designed to operate with a clean sinewave, but VFDs introduce high-frequency harmonics into the system. This distortion can lead to:

  • Increased Motor Heating: This results in premature wear and tear, reducing the lifespan of your motors.
  • Voltage and Current Distortion: Harmonics can cause disturbances throughout your electrical system, impacting other connected equipment.

These issues underscore the importance of addressing harmonics to ensure smooth and efficient operation, and one solution to the problems caused by VFD-induced harmonics is harmonic filters. These filters, typically composed of passive circuits with inductors and capacitors, work by diverting unwanted harmonic frequencies away from the motor, grounding them, and thus cleaning up the power supply. Here’s how harmonic filters make a difference:

  • Extended Motor Lifespan: By reducing the heating caused by harmonics, motors experience less wear and tear, significantly extending their operational life.
  • Lower Maintenance Costs: With fewer instances of motor overheating and breakdowns, maintenance needs—and costs—are reduced.
  • Enhanced System Stability: A cleaner power supply means less stress on your entire electrical system, protecting all connected equipment from potential damage.

When it comes to harmonic filters, MTE Corp’s SineWave Guardian stands out, especially in retrofit scenarios. Here’s why:

  • Harmonics Filtering: The SineWave Guardian effectively filters out the harmonics generated by VFDs, ensuring that motors receive a power supply that closely resembles a pure sinewave.
  • Motor Compatibility: By filtering harmonics, this filter allows non-VFD-rated motors to operate safely and effectively with VFDs. This means you can avoid the significant expense of replacing existing motors with VFD-compatible ones.
The Hidden Issue with VFDs: Harmonics

BizEnergySaver Program + MTE’s SineWave Guardian Filter = Win-Win

Replacing motors to accommodate VFD installations can be a significant expense. The BizEnergySaver program offers a smart solution to this challenge. By utilizing MTE’s SineWave Guardian filter, you can bypass the need for new VFD-compatible motors altogether. This translates to substantial cost savings while still allowing you to leverage the efficiency and control benefits of VFDs. In essence, you can optimize your existing equipment and unlock energy savings without the added burden of motor replacements.

The BizEnergySaver program offers significant incentives for VFD upgrades, making it an opportune time to consider integrating the SineWave Guardian filter. Here’s how this combination can maximize your benefits:

  • Maximizing Incentives: Leverage BizEnergySaver’s discounts on VFD installations while avoiding the cost of motor replacements thanks to the SineWave Guardian filter.
  • Reducing Retrofit Costs: Save more by using your existing motors with the new VFD setup.
  • Boosting Energy Efficiency: The filter ensures optimal motor operation, which enhances energy efficiency and reduces consumption.

Considering a VFD upgrade for your building in Ottawa or Toronto’s Richview South area? The BizEnergySaver program and MTE’s SineWave Guardian filter can be a powerful combination to maximize your return on investment. The program offers substantial discounts on VFD installations, and the SineWave Guardian filter eliminates the need for costly motor replacements, leading to significant upfront cost savings. Furthermore, this approach optimizes energy efficiency by ensuring smooth VFD operation and protects your existing motors from damaging harmonics, potentially extending their lifespan and reducing future maintenance needs.

To explore this program, visit this link, or contact Vanco Electrical Supplies by phone at 905-305-7702 or email at info@vancoelectrical.com for more info.

Available at Vanco Electrical Supplies – Certified Distributor of MTE


Related Story

Maximizing Motor Efficiency: Navigating the Impact of VFDs on Motors

Running a motor directly from the power source produces uniform, sinusoidal waveforms but wastes energy due to continuous speed operation regardless of the load requirements. To enhance efficiency, variable frequency drives (VFDs) control motor speed, reduce energy consumption, and minimize equipment wear. However, VFDs use pulse-width modulation (PWM) to supply electrical pulses instead of a true voltage waveform, generating harmful harmonics that can damage motors, cables, and bearings.

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