Hydraulic Cylinders 101: 3 Basic Maintenance Tasks To Complete Today

22 June 2017
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Hydraulic cylinders play a big role in many industries. After all, these important pieces of machinery are often used in both construction and manufacturing. While the hydraulic cylinder itself might seem like a simple device, it's actually very complex. This makes it extremely important that you follow a regular maintenance schedule.

So what should you be doing during each maintenance session? Here are 3 essentials:

1. Keep The Oil Clean

One necessary maintenance tip is to keep the oil in your hydraulic cylinder clean. This might sound like a no-brainer, but it's often overlooked. If you don't already have an oil filter, make sure you install one. There are many types of oil filters that can keep your oil clean and particle-free.

If your standard filter isn't doing the job, consider switching to a high-efficiency filter. Designed for ease of use, these filters have a pressure gauge that will notify when you it's time to change the filter. These type of filters are ideal, as they'll ensure that your hydraulic cylinder doesn't become clogged from dirty oil.

2. Perform Regular Inspections

You should also make sure to inspect the machine regularly. When examining the cylinder rod, be on the lookout for specific signs of wear and tear. Rough, scored, or even bent rods all indicate a serious problem with your hydraulic cylinder. If your cylinder has any of these signs, it's likely that your cylinder has a leak.

When inspecting your hydraulic cylinder, make sure that you examine the piston and cap as well. If dirt and debris has been trapped in the machinery, it will be obvious. Aside from seeing the actual debris, you'll also notice that the piston and cap looks worn out. It might even look like someone hit it with a hammer.

Both of these issues can lead to serious problems, so be sure to inspect your machinery regularly. This will allow you to fix or replace certain pieces before a larger problem develops.

3. Replace Seals

Finally, take some time to replace the seals in your hydraulic cylinder. Seals are fairly cheap and relatively easy to replace. This makes it easy for most people to do. Simply remove the worn out seals and replace. If you notice the appearance of thick sludge or varnish around the seals, it can indicate that the oil in your machine is constantly hot. So address that as well, if needed.

As you can see, performing maintenance on your hydraulic cylinder doesn't have to be difficult. However, if you do not feel comfortable taking a DIY approach, don't worry. A professional hydraulic cylinder maintenance tech can easily do all of these – and more – to keep your cylinder in good condition.