Variable frequency drives

A variable frequency drive (VFD) is a piece of equipment that, when added to an induction motor, lets you adjust its speed to suit your process needs. As a result, a motor can operate smoothly and efficiently at any speed.

In addition to saving motor energy, VFDs can:

  • control your process temperature, pressure and flow without the use of separate controllers
  • eliminate the need for throttle valves, dampers and soft starters
  • help reduce maintenance costs by enabling motors to be run at lower operating speeds
  • eliminate water hammers in liquid systems by slowing ramping up to speed when needed
  • protect equipment that cannot tolerate excessive torque or overloading.

When deciding on a variable frequency drive to buy, first study your process needs and the system you have. Sometimes that may be a complicated task however you can always hire a pro. A qualified professional can help perform these assessments if you need help.

For a comprehensive guide, download NRCan’s Variable Frequency Drives: Energy Efficiency Reference Guide.