Belt Drive Retrofit Solution



What are outdated HVAC belt drives costing you?  HVAC systems play a critical role in keeping us comfortable whether in a commercial, office or large residential buildings. The people who keep them running, including building managers and engineers, constantly monitor performance, costs and repair schedules to ensure comfort and long operational life.

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But have you considered that using existing technology may not be maximizing your repair costs and actually may be wasting energy costs? Consider that 50% of all energy used in buildings is tied to HVAC/R.

HVAC Statistics:


  • Belt drives are the means of mechanical power transmission for over 80% of commercial HVAC equipment.
  • Typical method of replacement for worn components is to replace like-for-like
  • Half of all commercial buildings were constructed before 1980
  • Commercial building energy usage = 11.0% cooling, 11.5% ventilation, 3.7% space heating. = 26.2% for all HVAC equipment
  • Of belt driven equipment there are 2 typical types of belts, wrapped and notched
  • Wrapped belts peak power transmission capability are 95%-96% efficiency
  • Notched belts transmission capability are 98% efficiency
  • The current installed base of notched vs. wrapped is approximately 57% - 60% wrapped
  • HVAC/R uses 50% of all energy in U.S. commercial buildings
  • Research suggests that about 50% of the fans in use will not comply with the new federal regulations and will need to be upgraded or replaced



Perceptiv intelligence Saves Hospital over $7,000 Annually with new Belt Solution

Lifecycle Services

A prominent healthcare facility in Los Angeles, California had an aging fleet of HVAC systems in their facility. The equipment had worn sheaves, worn belts and under-tensioned belts which indicated the HVAC systems were operating well below expected efficiency levels. The facility owners were interested in the Browning® “Save the Green/Sustain the Green” program and were considering a mass retrofit of all belt drives. However, they required proof of energy savings to justify the cost of the retrofit project. Read more…


Browning Belt Drive Upgrade Program – Energy Responsibility in 4 steps 

  1. Upgrade from wrapped to notched belts and improve efficiency. Wrapped v-belts can run up to 95% efficient, whereas notched v-belts can run up to 98% efficient!
  2. Replace Worn Sheaves
    • Groove wear greater than 1/32” indicates replacement is needed
    • Belt should never ride in bottom of groove
    • Inspect for breaks on flange
  3. Properly Tension Belts. Example of glazed belt due to under tensioning and worn sheaves.
  4. Install self-adjusting motor base. Tenso-Set® Series 600 horizontal sliding motor base (with optional quick release) enhances technician convenience and belt drive efficiency by automatically maintaining belt tension for extended periods and allowing quick belt changes.

To Reconfigure Your Drive Utilizing Browning® High-Performance Belt Drive Components, You Can:

  • Use the “Retrofit Audit Sheet” function in the Toolbox Technician® app: download the Toolbox Technician app and input your HVAC drive data, and our Application Engineers will create an optimized drive design for you.
  • Use Self-service EDGE V-belt Drive Optimization Software: the EDGE (Engineered Design Guaranteed Economy) online Browning belt drive self-service drive design tool selects the lowest cost and most torque dense drives. It is available anytime at
  • Or, contact our Application Engineering team at 800-626-2093 or [email protected] for additional expertise.



 Mounted Bearings  B5V® Sheaves  Variable Pitch Sheaves  V-Belts  Tenso-Set Motor Base


  • Air Handling Design
  • Concentric Lock on the Shaft
  • High Performance, Low Vibration/Noise

  • B and 5V belt sections
  • Split taper bushing, positive shaft lock
  • High performance, low vibration


  • Ribbed design, cool running
  • Precision thread tolerance
  • High performance, low vibration

  • EPDM Material, wide temp range
  • Code One Matching exceeds RMA matching limits
  • High performance, low vibration


  • Significantly reduces time required to change v-belts
  • Promotes greater efficiency by constantly maintaining v-belt tension
  • Design helps to maintain superior drive alignment
 beltdriveretrofit  beltdriveretrofit  beltdriveretrofit  beltdriveretrofit  beltdriveretrofit


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For more information on Browning Drive Retrofit you can contact us at the following address:


E-mail: [email protected]


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Download the Browning® Toolbox Technician® app for useful information and tools that should be in the pocket of every HVAC technician.


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