Sings That Your Tractor Hydraulic System Is In Need Of Repair Or Maintenace

If you have recently purchase a tractor for use on you property to dig ditches, remove trees, or to move large quantities of dirt, then your new vehicle will likely have a hydraulic system that allows for the movement of attachments like buckets. If you are unfamiliar with hydraulics, then you may not know if the system needs to be repaired or maintained. However, there are several signs that you can look for that can indicate a problem. Keep reading to learn about a few and what they mean.

Banging And Knocking Nosies 

If you move the bucket, grapple, or rake attachment and hear banging or knocking noises, then this is a sign that the hydraulic system has air in it. When the fluid compresses and decompresses as it moves through the system, the air is placed under the same sort of stress as the hydraulic fluid and the noises develop. The noises themselves are not something to worry about since they are caused by simple pressure changed. However, the air in the system can cause damages. 

Air can cause hydraulic fluid degradation in a relatively short period of time. Also, the air can force the release of lubrication from the hydraulic seals and the seals can then crack and wear out. The seals can also burn as air comes into contact with them and the entire system can start to overheat. Under normal circumstances, the hydraulic fluid will pull heat away from the system, but air is not able to do this effectively and the system degrades under the excess buildup of the heat. 

Air inside the hydraulic system is often caused by a leak, but the leaking issues is not usually a serious one if the hydraulics still function properly. Intake hoses that feed fluid into the hydraulic pump typically form holes and cracks as they age. Also, clamps holding the hoses in place can contribute to leaking issues as well. The replacement of the lines and the clamps is a pretty easy, straightforward, and inexpensive job. Since some serious issues can develop due to the buildup of air in the system, investing in an intake hose inspection and replacement as soon as possible is a good idea. 

Knocking sounds and air in the hydraulic system can also be caused by something called suction cavitation. This is where vapor builds within the system and it is caused by significant pressure changes. Hydraulic pump issues are typically the cause of this, so speak with a tractor repair or maintenance specialist to have the pump inspected for wear and tear. 

Increasing Fluid Temperatures

Hydraulic fluid must remain warm to function properly, but a great deal of heat carried by the fluid must be absorbed and released to retain the functionality of the hydraulic system. If you notice the hydraulic fluid heat gauge increasing over a period of time and moving closer and closer to the overheat temperature range, then this is a serious sign of a problem.

Both increased levels of heat within the system and its inability to dissipate heat properly are the two main reasons why the temperature may be rising. The main fluid reservoir is where the vast majority of heat is released from the fluid, so make sure that the reservoir is receiving the airflow it needs. Tractor vents may be blocked and reducing airflow, so make sure to clean it often. The openings on the reservoir itself may be caked with debris so check for this as well and clean the container. 

Your tractor will also have something called a heat exchanger that may be clogged or blocked and allowing the fluid to overheat. Speak with your tractor maintenance specialist about checking this part of the system to make sure it is working well.