No matter the nature of the construction project you’re working on, ensuring that your equipment is protected from any kind of seasonal damage they may face should be a top priority. Your equipment (and materials) are the lifeblood of your project, no matter what you’re building; as such, they should be treated with the tender loving care that they deserve.
There are several ways you can protect your equipment from seasonal damage, we’re going to take a closer look at three easy and effective methods you can start implementing right now to ensure your equipment’s protection. Please note that all three of these methods assume that you’ll store your equipment when not in use; these methods should be used complementarily with other methods and not as the complete solution.
Equipment protection: what you need to know
Before we get started, it’s important to note that there many more ways you can keep your construction equipment protected from seasonal damage – this blog is just the tip of the iceberg. That being said, these are great starting points:
- Do your due diligence when preparing your equipment for storage
- First thing’s first, you’ll want to carefully complete the pre-storage preparation tasks listed in the machine’s operation and maintenance manual – you could cause yourself a world of trouble if you skip this step.
- Next, check the manual for any recommended winter maintenance items you may need to get, as well as its fuel and oil recommendations. We recommend that you and your workers receive the necessary maintenance training for your equipment, especially for heavy machinery.
- Thoroughly clean the machine of debris and dirt, including the engine compartment. If you’re storing an excavator, don’t forget to clean out the undercarriage as well. All of the machine’s parts should be properly lubricated, while the vulnerable cylinder rods should be greased to prevent rusting and moisture build-up while they’re in storage.
- Make sure you properly clean out the machine’s cab. Some equipment manufacturers provide an optional on-board air compressor to efficiently remove dust and debris.
- After cleaning your machine, start looking for any signs of damage in as many areas as you possibly can – we recommend recruiting a few helping hands to get this done.
- Replace any parts that are damaged and/or worn with fresh components. Be sure to document any and all items which will need attention before spring.
- Inspect the cab window and door seals to ensure there are no cracks or leaks. Replace any burnt-out bulbs to make sure your operators have the suitable lighting when operating the machines.
- Protect your equipment from the elements
If you can’t keep some of your equipment in storage containers or sheds (this applies especially to heavy machinery), we recommend that you find a safe and secure off-site facility to park your equipment. You should aim for a dry, indoor environment that free of wind and direct sunlight. If you want to go the extra mile, you can cover your equipment with a tarp to avoid any sort of moisture build-up.
When you start up your engine again, we recommend that you use a block heater to help warm the engine up and get it running at room temperature; this will help prevent the valves from sticking and assist with oil distribution.
- Prepare and lower all your attachments
Many kinds of equipment require attachments to effectively operate, which means that you need to treat them with as much care as you do your machinery. Inspect your attachment components thoroughly for damage before storing them. This includes hydraulic hoses, guards, cylinders, cutting edges and teeth, as well as anything that can be attached to your machines.
Your attachments should be stored indoors and away from harsh elements. Once you’ve completed all these steps, tag your equipment and their attachments to indicate that they’re ready for storage.
If you’d like to learn more about how you can effectively protect your equipment from seasonal damage, don’t hesitate to get in touch with us today!