A skid steer is an important piece of equipment with a wide range of work capabilities, allowing you to complete your projects in a faster, more productive, and safer way.
With a variety of attachment tools, including augers, buckets, forks, backhoes, rippers, and more, your skid steer can be configured for a variety of tasks.
How to Maintain a Skid Steer
Here is a checklist of how to maintain your skid steer for proper operations and extend its lifespan.
Right Hydraulics System
Most attachments are connected to the machine’s hydraulic system. Depending on the power of the system, you can choose to have either standard-flow attachments or high-flow attachments.
Hydraulic systems that come with the standard flow can range from 17-24 GPM, while hi-flow hydraulics can range up to 30-38 GMP.
Keep in mind that not every skid steer comes with a hi-flow hydraulic system so you need to understand the power of your attachments before hitching them to the machine. If you try to run a hi-flow attachment on a standard-flow machine, it will not run properly, and you might even end up damaging the equipment.
Maintaining the right fluid levels allow your skid steer to run smoothly. Make sure that the hydraulic fluid, engine oil, and coolant are all maintained according to the owner’s manual so that your equipment and attachment do not experience overheating and wear.
You also need to change the machine fluids at regular levels and ensure they are at the right temperature to prevent burning. If you see signs of leakage or a reduced level of fluid, this may be due to a loose fitting or cracked hoses, and you need to fix this as soon as possible to prevent further damage.
Caring for Tires and Track
One of the most important aspects of maintenance is to ensure that the tire or tracks of your skid steer are in good working condition and are not worn down. Make sure your skid steer tires are always properly inflated at the optimal pressure.
Since skid steer tires are thick, it may not be easy to detect pressure change with the naked eye. It is important that you keep a pressure gauge on hand and regularly check your tires to see if they are overinflated or underinflated.
If your skid steer has tracks, you need to ensure they have the right amount of tension. Too little tension means the tracks are loose, while too much tension means more wear and loss of power.
Keeping your skid steer clean will also extend its life span. Make sure the body of your skid steer is always clean of debris. Ensure that you keep its windows clean as well for maximum visibility, which can improve safety.
Keeping your engine compartment clean and free of debris is also essential, as dust and dirt can quickly accumulate on the components. This can clog some parts and overheat others, which will affect the electrical connections.
One of the most important ways you can ensure the long life of your skid steer is to make sure you use it the right way. Not following the instructions in the owner’s manual can prematurely wear its parts, cause damage to its attachments, increase the need for repairs, and enhance the lifespan of the machine.
Make sure you use vertical-lift and radial-lift skid steers for the right job. Choose the right attachments for your skid steer’s hydraulics and horsepower. Also, only put as much load on the skid steer as it can handle.
Servicing your skid steer regularly is important for increasing its lifespan. Servicing companies have special tools and trained mechanics who understand how a skid steer and its attachments work and how to take care of them. They also have access to many resources, which can help them do maintenance quickly and prevent any issues from developing in the near future.
At Solaris Attachments, we can help you find out how to take care of your skid steer and its associated attachments. Additionally, if you need any replacement attachments for your skid steers, we have them too. Reach out to us today to talk to our customer representative about how to manage your skid steer.