Inspecting Wire Rope: Maintenance Tips for Longevity

While wire rope is known for its strength and durability, it is not indestructible. Core failure is one of the most common hazards, posing a potential safety hazard to those on your job site. Thankfully, there are ways to increase the lifespan of your rope and keep your project running smoothly. Keep reading to discover the best wire rope maintenance tips.

Store Wire Rope Properly

Safely and intentionally storing your wire rope extends its working life. The best way to do this is on a reel, which helps the rope maintain its shape and function by not getting tangled or kinked. Reels also make wire rope easier to store and transport. 

When storing wire rope, be sure to keep it in a cool, dry, covered and ventilated area. Make sure the rope is stored at least several inches of the ground – water damage from flooding can corrode the rope and cause its lubricant to wear off.

Clean and Lubricate Rope Regularly

The importance of wire rope lubricants cannot be overstated. They reduce friction when individual wires move over each other, and have corrosion control properties. Make sure excess grease is removed after lubricating, as lack of proper cleaning may cause dirt and water to stick to the lubricated rope. Remove any buildup of mud, salt, rocks, dirt and other debris you notice as well.

Thoroughly Inspect Rope for Wear and Tear

OSHA and ASME have strict regulations when it comes to wire rope quality. Inspect your rope for any of the following: broken wires, corrosion, heat damage, bent hooks, kinks, a shrinking diameter, rust and permanent bends.

If the rope appears damaged or deviates from the norm in any way, pull it for inspection. It’s always better to be overly cautious than to risk injury or accident later. Establishing regular inspection services before and after each use are crucial for keeping your job site safe.

Make Sure the Rope is Strong Enough

When wire rope is not the correct size, type or cannot withstand the weight you are loading, it is a recipe for disaster. Veer on the side of caution and only lift loads you know the rope can support. Review the minimum and collective breaking strengths your rope can withhold to prevent snapping, fraying and breakages.

Wire Rope Inspection Services

Southwest Wire Rope supplies rope in various diameters and strengths and provides on-site spooling and inspection services to keep your job site safe, compliant and running smoothly. 

Contact us today to schedule services or request custom lifting and mooring products. We look forward to working with you.