This is how you maintain your logging truck’s hydraulic system 22.08.2018 Alucar, Hydraulic system, Service, Timber transport What is a logging truck without a working crane? It goes without saying that a crane is vital for ensuring effective working capacity and loading speed in logging. For a crane to work at optimum efficiency, the entire hydraulic system has to be in order, because even the slightest problem in the truck’s system will immediately affect how well the crane works. That is why it pays to make sure that the quality and maintenance of the hydraulic system is the best possible. Because of the demanding working conditions, Alucar only installs carefully selected components into hydraulic systems “The hydraulic system is the heart of the logging truck and, to function properly, it requires a well-maintained hydraulic line,” Installation Supervisor Thomas Wester Alucar only installs carefully selected components into hydraulic systems. “We use oil tanks designed for demanding automotive use and filters with a large volume flow,” says Alucar’s Installation Supervisor Thomas Wester. High-quality components promote the smooth operation of the hydraulic pump, but even the best system requires regular servicing. Dirt and impurities cannot be avoided when loading timber. The demanding working conditions and winter motoring, among others, burden the hydraulic system. Also, many stages of the work, such as removing the crane from the truck, may endanger the functionality of the system. If any dirt gets into the system while removing the crane’s quick couplings, this is likely to cause problems with the pump and crane, as well as other sensitivities to faults. “The hydraulic system is the heart of the logging truck and, to function properly, it requires a well-maintained hydraulic line,” Wester says. Change the oil in the hydraulic system about once a year and the filter a couple of times a year Regular servicing of the hydraulic system helps to prevent problems even if it is working perfectly. Daily cleaning is without a doubt the most important maintenance measure, but dirt will inevitably gather in the system in connection with timber loading and it can only be removed by carrying out service operations, such as oil and filter changes. A suitable frequency for changing the oil in the hydraulic system is about once a year and for filter changes a couple of times a year. “Taking care of oil changes is a bit like eating healthy food to maintain the human body,” says Wester. Many of the trucks with installations by Alucar are also regularly serviced by them. Generally, oil and filters are always changed in connection with a service. According to Wester, however, maintaining the hydraulic system is not complicated. Oil and filter changes are easy to do yourself too. “Maintenance work requires a lot of accuracy and care, but the most important thing is to make sure that no impurities get into the system even during an oil or filter change,” he says. How to maintain a hydraulic system: Check the amount of oil daily from the tank’s gauge. The oil level must be above the measuring glass and the oil surface must not be visible. Check the oil tank once a month. Unscrew the lid and clean any dirt in the lid with a piece of paper or by lightly blowing air on it. Be careful not to let any impurities into the tank. Change the oil once a year. Clean the surroundings carefully first to avoid dirt getting into the system during maintenance. Remove the filler caps and drain the old oil into a container. Hydraulic systems installed by Alucar usually have a 200-litre tank, so make sure your container for the old oil can hold at least that amount. Always change the filters when changing the oil. There are always two filters to change, but if the truck has a variable-displacement pump, the LS-line filter should also be changed. Alucar recommends using filters designed by Alucar for the original purpose in hydraulic systems installed by Alucar. Pour the new oil into the oil tank and replace the cap. Dispose of the waste oil according to the relevant laws and regulations. Replace the filters at least once between oil changes. See our Youtube video on this!