Are your hydraulic pumps failing long before their service life is up? Are they running rough or slower than you’d expect at this point? The key to keeping your hydraulic system in good shape is regular maintenance. Often, you can do this upkeep by yourself, but sometimes it’s a good idea to have a company come in and handle it for you.
Perform Regular Checks
It’s essential that you actually check on the machine regularly. This includes checking the temperature at least once a month, if not once a week. This way, you will have a log of the average temperatures. You should take the temperature in several areas that you mark on the tank, so you can check the same places each time.
After the first 50 hours, you should change the hydraulic liquid and flush the hydraulic system. After that, keep a schedule to help you remember to change the liquid. Your owner’s manual should tell you how frequently this needs to be done.
Keep the System Free of Contaminants
Before you check anything on the system, you should wipe down the area around the dipsticks or filters, etc. This will remove the debris around them and prevent it from falling into the system when you take out the dipstick or filter to look at it.
All your containers containing fluids for the system should be kept tightly closed. Wipe down the bottle before you pour any of the liquid into the system and you will avoid multiple contaminants that could be on the bottle.
Check the Oil Before Each Use
It should become habit to simply check the oil before you use the system each time. If the oil is low, it can completely destroy your system.
You should also watch for signs of air leaks. If air is getting into the system, you’ll notice that the hydraulics are operating slowly and may be jerky. The oil can also be milky in appearance.
Listen for Cavitation
After every 50 operating hours, take a little time to listen for odd sounds. If you hear rattling while the pump is operating, it should be turned off immediately and checked over for leaks, alterations, etc. The fluids should also be checked, as well, since they may be low or possibly contaminated.
Other Things to Check
All too often, no one notices that the system is failing until it’s too late. By the time the pump shuts down, you have a lot of damage to fix, so it’s essential that maintenance be kept up.
You should also take a look at all hoses and lines after every 50 hours of operating time. Fittings and couplings will also need to be checked to ensure they’re tight enough that no leaks will occur. Couplings should be wiped down, since they are the point that most contaminants enter the system.
Need to install or maintain a hydraulic pump system? HP Hydraulics is here to help!