With the harsh temperatures winter in Saskatchewan throws at us, we thought now would be the perfect time to share some cold weather operating tips for your equipment. No matter which Young’s Equipment location you live closest to, you’re blessed with cold and snowy weather that is hard on your machines. The following five tips will help keep your machines running at top performance when the mercury retreats into that little bulb at the bottom of the thermometer.
- Allow time for machines to warm up – Cold weather is hard on everything, including your equipment. Hoses, wires, hydraulics and more can become stressed or even brittle. Be sure to allow enough time for your machines to come up to operating temperature before heavy operation. Batteries need to be kept fully charged and warm. If possible, keep equipment inside; otherwise, park it in an area that is protected from the harsh winter wind.
- Maintenance checks are vital – Regular maintenance helps you minimize your machine’s downtime and increases your operator’s safety. If anything, these checks are more important in the cold weather, even as human nature makes them more likely to be skipped. Consider taking advantage of Young’s Equipment Winter Inspection and Maintenance programs.
- Switch to synthetic hydraulic/transmission oil – With CaseIH Hy-Tran you’re already using the finest hydraulic fluid on the market that enhances your equipment’s brake and clutch capabilities while helping reduce final drive wear, clutch slippage and brake chatter. Hy-Tran Ultraction is designed to work in an ambient temperature range of -30C to +50C. Consider switching to Hy-Tran SSL once the cold hits, this synthetic blend oil provides all the advantages of Hy-Tran you already value, plus it is designed to work optimally all the way down to -40C. Hy-Tran SSL is an all-season oil that does not need to be drained for operation in warm or hot temperatures.
- Prepare for snow operation – First, make sure machine operators are properly dressed for the cold, even if the machine has a cab or some protection from the elements. They should avoid loose clothing that can catch on controls – a very real hazard. Operators should also be properly trained for snow and icy conditions. This can help prevent errors like excessive down pressure, which can cause damage and is hazardous to the operator and others. Flashing lights, warning sirens and other features should all be in operating order to improve visibility. Defrosters should be checked to keep windows and doors clear so the driver’s visibility is not impaired.
- Rest – Schedule breaks for yourself and your team, as the cold weather can drain energy. Tired drivers are extremely dangerous, so ensure everyone is well-rested and capable of full concentration.
In case you have further questions about winter operation, the Winter Inspections program or Hy-Tran SSL, the Parts and Service staff in all our locations will be happy to answer them for you. We are looking forward to hearing from you soon!