In general, heavy machinery owners can use the wisdom they’ve learned about their personal vehicles to keep machinery in top working condition. However, work trucks and other pieces of construction equipment have special needs.
To keep your heavy machinery in the best condition, follow these five best practices. No matter what kind of machinery you have, whether it’s a fleet of diggers or vacuum excavators, adapt these tips to suit your needs.
- Protect Wiring and Hydraulic Lines
Heavy machinery has more external components than the average vehicle. Hydraulic lines and electrical wiring powers dump trucks, boom trucks and just about any piece of machinery. Work sites are often full of threats to these components:
- Sharp materials
- Stress from heavy loads and frequent use
- Harsh weather conditions
Protect these parts by putting a cover over heavy machinery when they’re not in use. Before the end of the day, inspect these elements for dangerous wear and tear. Keeping lift components in top working condition is one of the first lines of defense. OSHA guidelines about heavy machinery mandate that electrical wiring components be “maintained in a dust-tight, dust-ignition-proof, or explosion-proof condition, as appropriate.”
- Monitor Axle and Tire Health
The ground around construction sites is often rough and rugged. While heavy machinery has tougher axles and suspension than regular vehicles, these conditions are hard on axles and tires.
Dislodge any large pieces of debris stuck around tires and axles. To prevent future issues, monitor tire tread depth and axle alignment and replace or have those parts serviced per manufacturer recommendations.
- Lubricate Regularly
Once again, heavy machinery has a lot of moving parts. Most of those parts need frequent lubrication. The type of lubricant and how often you should lubricate a piece of equipment varies, but failing to lubricate may lead to increased downtime and accidents.
Lubricate all moving parts per manufacturer instructions to increase the lifespan of any piece of equipment, saving you money, time and your team’s lives
- Schedule Regular Cleaning
Maintenance best practices start with regular cleaning. This isn’t just a time to make your fleet look like it’s in the best condition possible — it’s a great time to check a piece of heavy equipment’s overall status.
With a thorough cleaning, you may discover pieces of debris stuck in a vehicle’s undercarriage. When using hydraulic components while they’re wet, leaks will be shown through bubbles around the area. In general, heavy machinery cleaning ensures your team has an intimate knowledge of every vehicle’s nooks and crannies.
- Keep In-depth Maintenance Records
Every time you perform maintenance on a piece of heavy machinery, put all notes, observations, pictures work orders and receipts in a file. If you have frequent issues with a particular piece of equipment, this paper trail is invaluable to getting to the root of the issue.
Having Heavy Machinery Issues? Get Them Checked Out
At Custom Truck One Source, we don’t just rent new and used construction vehicles. We provide heavy equipment service and maintenance across the US. With more than 60 highly-trained mobile technicians and 150 shop mechanics, we can help keep your fleet in top working condition. To find out more about enacting maintenance best practices, contact us today.