Properly caring for equipment in winter is crucial to ensuring its availability and performance so you can benefit from its full service life.
1. Get Proactive.
Proactive maintenance is the most important step to get your fleet winter-ready. Before temperatures turn colder, you should:
- Replace fuels and fluids with low-temperature alternatives.
- Test your battery outputs or remove the batteries on any equipment headed to storage.
- Check fuel, oil and air filters and replace any worn or dirty ones.
- Monitor fluid levels regularly for critical components like brakes and cooling systems.
- Lubricate moving parts for better protection from temperature extremes.
- Inspect hoses for signs of weakness.
2. Clean and Refuel Machinery Daily.
Another vital step in maintaining equipment in winter is removing excess dirt and residues when parking for the day. Road salts and chemicals can be harsh on your equipment, leading to corrosion. Similarly, mud and snow on the machines can freeze and be challenging to remove. To prevent this issue, rinse off any salt, dirt or snow before calling it a day.
It’s also best to fill up at the end of the workday — keeping fuel tanks topped off helps prevent condensation from forming as the machine sits idle.
3. Double Down on Inspections.
While regular inspections should always be part of your safety routine, winter inspections are even more crucial. As part of these routines, train operators to:
- Check the undercarriage for broken, worn or loose components and other damage that can cause accidents.
- Test lights for safer operation and higher visibility.
- Ensure cab heaters are working correctly.
4. Allow for Warmup Time.
As outside temperatures fall, your diesel engines need more time to reach proper operating temperatures. Putting them to work too soon can result in exhaust valves or intakes sticking. Adjust your crew’s schedule to allow warmup time and prevent unnecessary stress on your investments.
Schedule Winter Preventative Maintenance With Carolina Cat
Carolina Cat is your destination for complete construction equipment services in Charlotte and Western North Carolina. Our team of pros will ensure your fleet is current with manufacturer-recommended upkeep and help prepare your equipment for the colder months.