A Family Tradition: Selecting Lifejackets & Belt Cleaners

Every Father's day weekend, my family goes to the Lake of the Ozarks. We have done this for eight years. For five of those eight years, I only had to pack for my husband and me as we didn’t have a child yet. For the last three summers, I’ve been faced with the tough decision of which lifejacket is best for my daughter. Leading up to the trip, I was so stressed trying to pick the best option for her safety. I’m a little bit of a control freak and worrier regarding water safety, especially being in a boat on a busy lake. I wanted her to have the best option. This got me thinking about selecting the right belt cleaner and how that can be just as stressful for some.

Selecting A Belt Cleaner

When I was narrowing down my options, I had to think about weight limits, what safety features were available, as well as if it was approved by the coast guard (a must!). The same goes for selecting the right belt cleaner. You need to think about belt speed, belt width, head pulley diameter, material type, material path width, types and quantities of splices, and application temperature. It can be overwhelming. I remember growing up when my parents always said my lifejacket was still good from last year or I needed to go up a size. As a plant manager, you most likely don't have your mom and dad there telling you which belt cleaner will be most effective. Just like lifejackets, belt cleaners are not one size fits all! 


Lucky for you, our team can help select the right belt cleaner. When you provide the following criteria, we can help point you in the right direction! We still can’t play the role of your mom and dad, but we can help guide you in the selection process.

Check out our Selecting the Right Belt Cleaner e-book

Necessary Criteria

Belt Speed: Faster belts require stronger mainframes

Belt Width: The width of the belt cleaner should match the material path

Head Pulley Diameter: The blade should maintain consistent surface area contact with the face of the belt along the radius of the pulley

Material Path Width: Matching the width of the blade to the width of the material path ensures that the urethane wears evenly

Material Type: Matching the right type of urethane blade to the application ensures optimal cleaning performance

Application Temperature: Matching the appropriate urethane blade to the conveyor system’s operating temperature helps ensure optimal cleaning performance and maximum wear life

Splices: Vulcanized splices are the preferred method when it comes to belt cleaner performance

Additional Safety Measures / Cleaning

ToddlerLifeJacketWhile there were many options that would have been “approved” like a puddle jumper, I wanted the extra safety of the 3rd & 4th straps that went through the legs to buckle. That extra safety feature helped reassure both her and me. The lifejacket itself was like a primary belt cleaner, typically removing between 50 and 70 percent of material carryback. In some applications, this initial reduction in carryback is enough to maintain clean, safe, and productive conveyor operations. In a swimming pool or on a beach, I am content with my daughter wearing a puddle jumper. But like some operations wanting to achieve total carryback removal, a secondary and even a tertiary cleaner may be required to ensure optimal cleaning. Just like on the boat, I needed that additional safety measure.


I spent a lot of time researching what lifejacket I was going to buy only to find out the lifejacket I purchased for her last year was still the right size! It was in our boat docked five hours away. It all worked out because I had purchased the right product last year, and it set me up well for this year. That’s why when it comes to selecting a belt cleaner, it’s important to select and purchase the right cleaner to not have unnecessary worry.