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Choosing a Universal Motor: 8 Variables to Consider

March 23, 2018

Universal motors are a popular choice for AC or DC applications that need a simple, high speed, low-cost motor option which doesn’t require the continuous duty of the typical AC or DC Motor.  Universal motors are quite durable and are the choice for rough, high vibration applications, such as commercial concrete drills, commercial mixers, etc. When choosing a Universal Motor for an application, it is essential to know that the motor’s performance is significantly affected by the application variables. Using a motor that is tailored to the application will allow it to run at optimal performance.

Eight critical variables to consider when choosing a Universal Motor:

  1. Factors to consider when choosing a UMSpeed: Universal motors run at 10,000 – 30,000 RPM. Is there a specific speed requirement for the application and does it fall into the Universal Motor speed range?
  2. Torque: The load of the motor will determine how large a motor is required. What torque does the application require?
  3. Cooling: Cooling the motor via forced convection will allow it to operate continuously at a higher torque. Will the motor require a fan? What amount of air flow will there be in the application?
  4. Mounting: Groschopp can customize the end brackets for various mounting faces, hole patterns and pilots. How does the motor need to be mounted within the application?
  5. Housing: The housing will be required to prevent ingress of foreign particles but also provide sufficient airflow to the motor. Groschopp can provide a skeleton motor or the customer can in integrate the armature and field into their assembly. What housing design does the application require?
  6. Life Expectancy: The brush life for a Universal Motor is shorter than that of a PMDC motor at a continuous duty rating.  What is the required lifespan of the application and will it be continuous or intermittent duty?
  7. Shafts: Because these motors are designed for the specific application, shaft sizes can be customized to fit the application requirements. What shaft length, diameter and features does the application require?
  8. Voltage: Universal motors run on 115VAC, 115FWR, or 230VAC.  What type of power supply will be used in the application?

At Groschopp, our Universal motors are always designed and manufactured to fit the needs of a particular application.

(To learn more, click the following link to our blog, Why is there no Standard Universal Motor?”)

How to use the Motor Search Tool

Narrow your search by selecting motor type, gearbox, voltage, and phase options for your desired motor.

Select a dominant variable: choose one of the three parameters to narrow your search. The selected variable determines which slider bar you will be able to manually move.

Use the slider corresponding to your dominant variable to further narrow your motor selection. The other sliders will automatically move to show available ranges based on the range of your selected variable.

Results will upload as your search criteria changes. If you have any questions regarding your results or how to use the search tool, you can chat with us using the green tab on the left-hand side of your screen.


Note: Groschopp Universal motors are custom built to fit your application so no additional options are available to narrow the search. Selecting the Universal motor type will prompt a message taking you to the Universal product page.

Not sure what you need?

One of our team members would be happy to help. Contact us at 800-829-4135 or by email at sales@groschopp.com. You can also chat with us using the green tab on the left side of your screen.

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Universal Motors

Groschopp Universal motors are custom built to fit your application so no additional options are available to narrow the search. Standard frame sizes and motor features can be found on the Universal page.

go to Universal page