Material handling equipment like forklifts, compact track loaders, and skid steers are subject to constant wear and tear. As cooler weather approaches, here’s how to maintain and prep your equipment so it can remain efficient, safe, and reliable throughout the winter months ahead.
1. Check Your Fluids & Battery
- Fluids: Ensure that all of your fluids, including engine oil, hydraulic fluid, and coolant, are at the appropriate levels. In colder climates, consider using winter-grade fluids to prevent freezing.
- Battery Maintenance: Colder weather can affect battery performance. Check the battery's state of charge, and clean terminals.
2. Inspect for Outer Wear & Tear
- Tires & Tracks: Check that all tires are properly inflated and that your tires and/or tracks have enough tread. For tracks and polywheels, make sure there is no damage or signs of significant wear and tear.
- Brake Systems: Inspect brake pads, shoes, and brake lines and hose. And don’t forget to check your parking brake! Adequate brakes are crucial for safety during the fall season.
- Lighting and Safety Features: Ensure that all lights, warning signals, and safety features (e.g., horns, backup alarms, seatbelts) are in working order. Reduced daylight hours and inclement weather demand optimal visibility and safety.
3. Go In-Depth Under the Hood
- Lubrication: Lubricate all moving parts and components according to the manufacturer's recommendations. This prevents excessive wear and maintains smooth operation.
- Filters: Replace air, fuel, and hydraulic filters as needed to ensure optimal engine performance.
- Inspect Hydraulics: Check hydraulic lines, hoses, and connections for leaks or damage, as cold temperatures can exacerbate hydraulic system issues.
Extreme temperatures and exposure to the elements can all affect your material-handling equipment’s performance and lifespan. Visit our e-commerce site (LINK to IRMN) to find fluids, battery chargers, tires, and more seasonal maintenance parts and equipment to help you prepare for the seasonal changes ahead and keep your machines running efficiently all throughout the year.