Caterpillar starter motor seized
When carrying out maintenance we all know how vital it is to keep track of parts and tools used.
But it’s not just tools we need to keep track of.
An offshore client sent us two Caterpillar air starter motors to overhaul; one had seized and the other was not operating correctly on demand.
Our engineer Mark set to work on these, starting with inspection and then stripping them down – at this point, the cause of the motor seizing became apparent – there was a piece of rag stuck in the motor!!
From experience, we suspect that the air inlet to the motor had been deliberately plugged with a piece of rag to stop any contaminants getting in whilst work was being carried out on the starter motor.
The rag must then have fallen inside of the motor and not been noticed when the air supply pipe was reconnected.
When the air starter was operated the rag would have been blown into the starter motor, causing it to seize.