Skid Steer Tire and Track Maintenance Tips
Skid steers and compact track loaders are machines that are used with most construction a wide variety of attachments. It's important to keep the tires and tracks of these versatile tools maintained to maximize their productivity.
Routine evaluation of the tracks and tires is key to maintaining optimal performance and reducing costly downtime. Checking for issues before they become large problems is a crucial step toward keeping your costs down.
Check tire pressure and track tension daily
One of the most basic ways to reduce premature tread wear and keep your loader operating efficiently is to check the tire pressure on your skid steers and the track tension on your compact track loader daily. Ensuring both meet the manufacturer's recommendations will lead to better wear rates and less stress on the equipment.
Inspect the tread and sidewall regularly
The tread and sidewall are two key areas to check when evaluating tire wear on your skid steer loaders. Keep an eye out for signs of cutting, chunking, stone drilling or debris penetration, or rubbing tearing. Some of these may be an indication of over or under inflation or poor site maintenance in a fixed site application. It's important to clean debris out of your tire treads daily. If you regularly find signs of tire damage, determining the root cause will help you to eliminate costly repairs.
Operate with care
Operators can have a huge impact on how well your skid steers and compact track loaders work. One of the benefits of these machines is that they can make quick movements and maneuver in tight areas. However, it is recommended that operators drive on the conservative side whenever possible. Try not to move too rapidly from forward to reverse or make turns too quickly, because both of these practices can accelerate tread wear. Also, avoid rubbing against curbs or other obstacles that can damage the tracks or tires.
Remember the basics
In addition to properly maintaining the tracks and tires, keeping your skid steer or compact track loader working at optimal performance requires regular inspections of all components and fluids. Before operating them each day, you should check all attachments to clean off any debris and inspect for damage. Be sure to review the loading arms carefully to ensure they are functioning correctly.
It's also important to check the rear of the machine, remove any debris, and confirm that all components, such as the air filter and cooling system, are in good shape. Remember that fluids are the lifeblood of your loaders. Regularly inspect the engine oil, hydraulic fluid, and coolant levels. Confirming that all fluid levels are full helps keep your skid steer from experiencing accelerated wear or heat damage.