The frosts have already begun, and fall is definitely here! That means that winter isn’t far behind. What steps should you be taking to make sure your equipment is prepared for the cold winter months? We’ve put together some useful tips used by the folks at CASE Construction to keep your equipment safe during the winter and guarantee a smooth startup come spring.
Keep your Batteries Safe
Proper winter battery maintenance actually begins in the fall; right about now! The biggest cause of battery failure is the buildup of dirt and debris on the top of the battery; it can create a conductive path and slowly drain the battery’s energy. Corrosion can have a similar effect, so if you notice any you can use baking soda and a brush to scrub the rust away, creating a clean contact and allowing the best, most consistent current supply to the machine from the battery.
Take Care of the Tires
In the cold winter months, tires are the first thing to take a hard hit. Cold weather decreases tire pressure naturally, so daily pressure checks are necessary to avoid potentially harmful low tire pressure situations. All counterweights or attachments should be removed from the machine when not in use as well; this can place even more unnecessary strain on the tires.
Take the Time to Warm Equipment Up
More than anything else, proper machine warm-up time is essential for keeping your equipment safe and properly functioning. Cold fluids or brittle hydraulic systems can spell danger for heavy equipment, and proper warm-up time decreases the chances of system or hydraulic failure.
It’s also important to consider operator habits when running equipment in cold weather. Avoiding high operating speeds and on-road travel greatly reduces the risk of equipment failure. Idling for long periods of time also causes unnecessary wear, burns more fuel, and puts extra strain on the delicate engine components.
Maintain your Engine
Your engine’s fluid levels are the most important factor in keeping your equipment “healthy” in the winter. Low oil and fluid levels spell trouble for equipment, so keep up on daily maintenance in order to ensure quick startups come springtime.
Of course, whenever possible, you should attempt to store your equipment in a temperature-controlled environment. Less fluctuation in temperature means less chance of pressure changes or fluid level variance.
Proper equipment maintenance throughout the fall and winter months is imperative for a smooth startup in the spring. Looking to grow your fleet, or need some new equipment? Give us at Eagle Power Turf & Tractor a call at 215-348-9041 or stop by our location at 697 N. Main Street, Doylestown, PA 19801 today!