Beat the heat by prepping your fleet for the summer season
The dog days of summer don’t just take a toll on workers. They put a strain on equipment in your rental fleet as well. Triple-digit temperatures tax your transmission, engine and hydraulic components if they are not properly maintained. If a piece of equipment isn’t properly prepared for operating in the heat, this can lead to downtime, loss of rental revenue and ultimately costly repairs.
Fortunately, if the service technician or machine operator properly conducts daily service checks, the equipment should be ready for working in excessive temperatures. With that said, here are a few critical service item checks to keep your equipment operating with maximum uptime.
Keep your cool…
- Check the cooling system – radiator, fan blades and belts
- Excessive heat during the summer months put a strain on these components.
- Make sure they are clean of debris to optimally dissipate excess heat.
- Inspect the hydraulic, transmission and engine oil cooler
- Keep these coolers clean as well, so they have the ability to perform properly.
- The condition of your fluids – transmission, axle, engine and coolant
- Change them at the prescribed intervals in the machine’s service manual.
- Confirm that the oil’s viscosity is right for the operating environment’s temperature range.
- The fuel tank, hydraulic tank, radiator overflow and axle vents need to be clear of debris
- Hot temperatures result in the expansion of liquids, which cause excessive pressure build-up, and these vents help to maintain atmospheric pressure and relieve excess pressure from the seals.
- Ensure all heat shields are in place and that the exhaust system is tight and leak-free
- Is the hydraulic system set at the correct pressure?
- Increased pressure results in excess resistance and, ultimately, creates more heat in the hydraulic circuit, something that can be detrimental to a machine working in triple-digit temperatures.
These maintenance tips will help your machine keep its cool and not fall victim to sizzling summer temperatures. Machines with more uptime result in higher rental revenue during the height of the construction season.