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Regular Hydraulic Maintenance: Keep your Hydraulic Machinery Working

14 Sep

When your company has made an investment in hydraulic machinery, you expect the equipment to function well for many years. Of course, no matter how careful you use the equipment for your projects, or how well trained users are, there are aspects of hydraulic maintenance that everyone must follow in order to make sure the hydraulic machinery is safe and efficient. One of ways that hydraulic machinery often requires regular maintenance is for its cylinder rods and wiper seals, because dents gouges in these areas reduce seal life and give contaminants an open pathway to the hydraulic system. These particles speed wear to the components of the hydraulic machinery.

Failing to pursue aggressive hydraulic maintenance can lead to equipment failure in a relatively short period of time. Most equipment owners respond to poor function by lugging their hydraulic machinery to the nearest repair shop, spending thousands of dollars to have the maintenance professionals rebuild their components. Perhaps this equipment failure is caused by high contamination levels, incorrect oil viscosity, cavitation or extreme temperature operation; whatever the cause of the failure, rebuilt components are generally the solution. The reality is that many owners believe that by simply checking the fluid levels of their hydraulic equipment they are performing all of the maintenance necessary to keep it running smoothly or thousands of hours and avoid equipment failure, which is, of course, wrong. What is lacking is a sufficient level of knowledge about what is necessary to get a maximum lifespan for your hydraulic machinery.

An effective hydraulic maintenance program must be proactive, and there are some monetary and convenience costs to adhering to such as program. However, the savings in machine performance, elongated component life, increased fluid life, reduced work downtime and fewer repairs down the road.There are seven suggested routines for owners who want to minimize the risk of their hydraulic machinery displaying premature component failures. In order to avoid work downtime and productivity loss, owners need to perform the following hydraulic maintenance:

  1. Maintain hydraulic fluid cleanliness
  2. Maintain optimum hydraulic fluid temperature and viscosity
  3. Maintain hydraulic systems settings in accordance with manufacturers’ specifications
  4. Schedule hydraulic component change-outs prior to actual failure
  5. Follow correct commissioning procedures
  6. Conduct routine failure analysis

For more information on hydraulic machinery and suggestions for how to set a hydraulic maintenance schedule, contact the experienced professionals at Jones Hydraulic Service. We offer a full line of hydraulic equipment and are a multi-line distributor of the products we carry. Call us today at 713-674-9571 for the hydraulic tools and equipment you need to keep your workflow going.

Hydraulic Machinery: Understanding the Structure of Hydraulic Tools

14 Sep

What is hydraulic machinery?

Hydraulic machinery are tools that use fluid power to perform work. Hydraulic tools are often heavy equipment that transmits high pressure hydraulic fluid throughout the various hydraulic motors and cylinders. This fluid is controlled automatically or directly by control valves, which are themselves distributed through hoses and tubes. Companies that use heavy equipment often choose hydraulic machinery because of the large amount of power that is able to transfer between the small tubes and hoses.

  • Hydraulic tubes: Seamless steel precision pipes that are manufactured exclusively for hydraulic machinery. There are standardized sizes for these pipes, depending on the pressure ranges specified. Hydraulic tubes are manufactured in lengths of 6m, and are cleaned, oiled and plugged. These precision tubes are interconnected by various types of flanges, welding cones, flare connections and cut-rings; yet they are not joined due to the need for inspectors to view the interior of the tubes.
  • Hydraulic pipes: In cases where standard hydraulic tubes are not available, hydraulic machinery that uses low pressure may include pipes. These hydraulic pipes are generally connected by welds, because their large diameter allows for internal inspection. Non-galvanized black pipe is suitable for welding. Most piping for marine applications is stainless steel, which resists corrosion.
  • Hydraulic hose: These hoses are used when hydraulic pipes or tubes cannot be used, and are graded—or categorized—by pressure, temperature and fluid capacity. The design includes a rubber interior, which is surrounded by several layers of woven wire and rubber. The exterior is intended to resist abrasion, and the bend radius is carefully designed into the exact specifications of the machine (hose failures can cause the hydraulic machinery to malfunction, resulting in deadly situations). Steel fittings are swaged to the ends of the hoses. Hydraulic hoses tend to have a shorter lifespan than pipes or tubes, and generally need replacement every five to seven years.

Hydraulic fluid

Hydraulic tubes and pipes are internally oiled before the tools are even commissioned. Sometimes known as “tractor fluid”, this lubricant is the lifeblood of the hydraulic machinery. The general composition of hydraulic fluid is petroleum oil with other additives, including some fire resistant fluids for particular applications. Hydraulic fluid functions to:

  • Transfer energy
  • Lubricate components
  • Suspend Contaminants and filings for transportation to the filter
  • Allow for hydraulic tool performance in extreme temperatures

Jones Hydraulic Service is a multi-line stocking distributor of hydraulic tools and other products. We offer both sales and rentals, and offer our clients top-quality industrial equipment at very competitive prices. To take advantage of our 100 years of experience in hydraulic machinery, call us at 713-674-9571.