Heavy construction machinery is an expensive asset for construction companies. Prolonging the lifespan of this equipment is essential, and through regular maintenance, it is achievable.
Optimizing overhead costs and operating expenses in the construction industry ensures a higher profit return. Reducing overhead costs through behavioral-based training is possible. For example, a proficient team is likely to finish a project ahead of time and keep person-hours low.
Whether you have a road roller, excavator, or bulldozer, regular maintenance will prolong the life of your equipment. Preventative maintenance will not only keep your equipment healthier but preserve the value of your equipment if you decide to sell it in the future.
You can address repairs before a problem rises if it is detected early. Machinery that does not require extensive maintenance will avoid production interruptions. Regular inspections and analysis can predict and prevent component failures that could pose a safety risk or cause a mechanical breakdown.
We have compiled a list of some tips to get you started.
Schedule Maintenance Checks And Cleaning Regularly
Think of your machinery as a person and a mechanic as a doctor. Just like you need annual general checkups with your general physician, your equipment needs regular checkups with the mechanic.
Routine maintenance of your machine’s operation keeps its performance on track with its projected lifespan. You should complement repairs (which should be done as soon as a problem shows) with regular checks.
When dirt and debris get stuck in moving parts, it can cause damage. When you stick to a regular cleaning schedule, you ensure that there are no rocks to cause significant harm. As a bonus, your clients will appreciate your clean equipment more.
Train Your Operators
When your operators are thoroughly trained, they understand the capabilities, functionality, and limitations. In this case, misuse and damage caused by operators will be limited.
Trained operators will be safer and more productive than untrained workers. Knowing the general layout and functionality allows them to discover problems early and take the necessary steps.
Qualified operators are familiar with maintenance schedules, daily routines, and safety equipment storage in addition to operating the machines. It is vital to keep your operators informed of steps to take in the event of an accident on or off the job site.
Don’t Push The Performance Limits
Operating these machines is often tedious and tiring, leading operators to overload the machinery to “power through” and finish tasks more quickly. Sticking to the performance limits will ensure general wear and tear is not accelerated and keep your staff safe.
Manufacturers did not build heavy construction equipment for high speeds and fast turns. Pushing performance limits could lead to injuries, damage to the machine, and even fatalities.
Monitor Fluid Systems
Most construction equipment uses hydraulic power (fluids) in the moving parts. Keeping a keen eye on the fluid levels and quality will ensure the fluid systems are running smoothly.
Low fluid levels reduce system pressure, resulting in a breakdown while handling average-sized loads. Contaminated oil will increase friction between moving parts and diminishes fluid density, lowering overall performance.
Keep All Moving Parts Lubricated
Construction equipment must function in extreme conditions, such as tremendous loads and temperature extremes, extensive wear and dirt, and water contamination. As a consequence of these issues, providing the best possible protection is vital.
Lubrication reduces friction between moving parts in contact, reducing the heat generated. Following the manufacturer’s recommendations regarding the type and amount of grease to apply to different parts of heavy machines is essential.
In construction, the type of materials your machine encounters determines how often it needs to be lubricated.
Maintain Good Records
Keeping records of a machine’s use and daily monitoring operations can help identify when an operator is insufficiently skilled. Your records are vital to know when your equipment is due for a service or when parts need to be replaced.
Your records should include a service history, maintenance checklists, inspection dates, and assessment conclusions. These will help prevent breakdowns by identifying potential problems before they become a major issue.
Know Your Machines
Implementing an effective preventive maintenance program and thorough product knowledge is essential. A machine’s equipment manual, which contains detailed information on diagnosing issues and prescribing preventative maintenance, may have vital information.
Manuals will indicate the recommended service frequencies for each unit of the machine, the maintenance products to use, and the equipment’s allowed operating conditions.
Owner’s manuals are often a helpful resource for troubleshooting. Manuals not only specify maintenance methods and techniques but also typically provide bullet-point itemization on what to do if there is a malfunction.
Identify Major Causes Of Breakdowns
An essential part of an effective maintenance plan is identifying the potential causes of a breakdown. You can save thousands of dollars and maintain regular workflows by detecting probable causes of failure before they occur.
There are three types of machinery failure: sudden failure (breakdown without warning), intermittent failure (can be challenging to identify the cause of the sporadic stoppage), and gradual failure (preventable by routine maintenance).
Establish A Checklist
A heavy machinery maintenance checklist is strongly suggested to help remember duties and mark them off as they are completed.
We suggest you set up check-sheets with each categorized activity associated with a specific interval. You could do this on a daily, monthly, or seasonal basis. It might also be based on machine time, with certain hourly milestones requiring special attention.
Monitor Your Machines Overall Condition
You don’t want to take risks when owning and operating heavy-duty machinery. Condition monitoring should be an essential component of your preventative maintenance strategy to avoid breakdowns and excessive repair expenses that sap efficiency and profit.
Perform simple condition inspections daily that include visual inspections. If you encounter anything that is out of the ordinary, make a note and ask a professional to check it.
Heavy machinery has a substantial maintenance cost and a high purchase price. The only definite way to obtain a decent return on investment is to keep the equipment in good working order.