No one buys hydraulics because they’re low maintenance. But the return on some time and effort includes exceptional reliability and productivity. Depending on your specific equipment – from a ten year old backhoe to a shop floor full of industrial machinery – your hydraulic maintenance schedule will vary. But the universal rule is that preventive maintenance is cheaper and easier than repairs. Here are some tips to get more out of your equipment and less out of your wallet.
1 Don’t misinterpret routine maintenance for red flags. Keep a log to track how often you’re replacing seals, filters, or fluid. If the frequency picks up, it could signal impending component failure you could prevent.
2 Be careful with your DIY hydraulic cylinder repair. Proper installation is key with new seals. Protect new parts; keep them clean and free of nicks and burrs. Use the right lubrication and don’t over tighten the seal gland or fold the lip over during your rebuild. And if you didn’t know that seals can be installed upside down, call a professional.
3 Keep tabs on your filters. Large operations use oil analysis and sensors to determine if their system is experiencing restricted flow rates, decreased fluid pressure or excessive contamination. But a small business owner can inspect old filters as they’re replaced for clues about wear plate failure, wear from cavitation or contamination and overheating.
4 Simplify your plan. You don’t have to have a large corporate budget or staff to keep your equipment in top condition. If you spend some money on good wiper screens for your hydraulic cylinders repair and maintenance, the savings will offset your initial costs. Even washing your equipment will make leaky hoses or busted fittings easier to spot. This is the cheapest and easiest way to avoid hauling inoperable equipment to a job site four hours away from the shop.
The useful lifetime of your equipment depends on the quality of your maintenance. If you don’t have the time, tools, or experience to do maintenance the way it needs to be done, call R & N Hydraulics at 501-847-2816 or contact us on our website. We take care of our customers just as well as we take care of their equipment.