As the temperatures start to rise it is also time to get your excavator in gear for upcoming jobs, but how do you do that? Inspecting your equipment and getting it ready for spring will help you set the tone for a great year. So here are some tips to get your equipment ready for the warm weather work months.
- Boom and arm: Look for excessive pin and bushing wear, as well as any damage to hard lines and hoses. If there are signs of excessive “play,” replace the pins and bushings. Do not wait; that could lead to an extensive repair job that causes significant downtime during the season. Also, shim the boom, arm and bucket to eliminate side play.
- Interior and exterior: Thoroughly clean the cab and replace cab air filters. This helps protect the machine’s electronics and makes the space more comfortable for you. I’ve pulled cab air filters out of a machine that are nasty — and that’s the air the operator is breathing. Remove snow with a broom or blow it off with compressed air. When possible, move the machine into a warm storage facility to thaw any ice. Check that there is no ice around the swing mechanism, motor or transmission, as it can tear seals, leading to damage and downtime.
- Undercarriage: Clean the undercarriage free of debris and adjust the tension. Check for loose track pads and repair as needed.
- Fluids, filters and grease: Check the levels of hydraulic oil, engine oil and coolants, fill accordingly, and replace all filters. Grease major points thoroughly.
- Engine: Inspect all belts to ensure they are properly tightened. Replace any that are cracked or otherwise damaged. Also check the integrity of all hoses, looking for signs of wear, cracking, swelling or damage from chaffing. Replace as needed. Assess the engine for oil and coolant leaks and address immediately. These are signs of what could become much bigger issues later if ignored.
- Battery: Even if you removed the battery at the end of the season, inspect the terminals and posts, cleaning as necessary. Check the electrolyte levels and the specific gravity and top off the charge.
- Seals: Look for weeping or damaged seals and replace as needed. Note that black rubber (Nitrol) O-rings shrink in the cold, but after being cleaned and warmed up, they may reseal. So, make sure they’re actually damaged before replacing them or calling in someone like me for something that’s not a problem.
Hayes Services can schedule your project and help you manage its complexities. If you are considering working on a project not discussed here, then be sure to contact Hayes Services. From landscaping efforts to foundation preparation, there are a large variety of projects that require the assistance of excavation companies like Hayes Services. Be sure to work with a fully licensed contractor in order to achieve the safest and highest quality outcome.