When the ambient temperature descends below 32°F (0°C) rubber begins to lose its elasticity. As the temperature falls, the rubber continues to lose flexibility and its ability to resist abrasion, impact, and cutting. Eventually, the belt is unable to trough and pass around pulleys. The covers and the rubber between the plies in the carcass also begin to crack. Ultimately, the belt will break because the frozen rubber becomes as brittle as glass.
Abrasion-resistant belts can usually withstand -22 °F to -40°F (-30°C/40°C) Other cover qualities (such as oil or fire) are usually only able to withstand a minimum temperature of -20°C. For temperatures lower than this, conveyors should be fitted with belts specially designed to withstand extreme cold.