What to Check Weekly on Your Hydraulic System?
Owning a trucking company is much more than simply having a few trucks in your fleet. It is also about the repairs and maintenance tasks you must stay on top of to keep things moving. Intentional maintenance will make a difference in the life of your fleet. Failing to do this will result in breakdowns and costly accidents.
Each part of the truck is important and needs to be maintained, but the hydraulic system is essential. Much is riding on this part of your truck(s) so having a weekly schedule in place is imperative. So, what tasks should be a part of your weekly hydraulic inspection?
Checking oil levels, the temperature gauges, and looking for leaks should be done daily. But there are more in-depth checks that you will need to do weekly.
- Check fluid level. Your trucks need to have the correct level of transmission fluid, oil, differential oil, and fuel injector fluid. Failing to do so will affect how the trucks operate. Boost efficiency by keeping your truck(s) fluid levels where they should be. Keep in mind that you should never mix oil types!
- Do a visual inspection of all hoses, pipes, and pipe connections. If you note any fraying, bubbling, chaffing, or leaking it can be a sign of seal wear. Not replacing a damaged part increases waste stream and consumption. This can result in overheating and become a serious safety hazard.
- Note filter and differential gauges and replace any that show signs of wear and tear.
- Using a flashlight, look inside the reservoir to check for holes. These will cause aeration which sends bubbles into the pump. It can also be detected by a gurgling sound. You will also want to listen for any high-pitch squeal as this is a sign of cavitation.
- Check the fluids to see that each one is the correct color and smell and is free of debris.
- Get out the infrared thermometer to check the servo valves. A sign of trouble is sluggish valve operation or the valves “jerking” around. Ideally, the temperature needs to be under 150°F.
- Inspect the electric drive motor for any housing hot spots or rotor bearings. If they are hotter than the manufacturer’s recommendations, have it serviced a.s.a.p.
To save on oil and fluids, consider buying in bulk. Purchasing from Lifetime Oil, your local AMSOIL dealer means you always have the products you need when you need them. No extra trips to the store, just a quick run to your storage closet to grab what you need.
Keep your fleet on the road longer by being intentional about hydraulic system maintenance. Don’t handicap your company by ignoring the simple weekly tasks. Inspect often, make adjustments when needed, and stay on the road to success.