Maintaining your hydraulic power unit correctly and adhering to its service intervals is crucial to ensuring that you get the best out of your system. But what is the best way to go about servicing your hydraulic power unit?
This is where the unit’s instruction and service manual comes into play as it specifies the pressures that should be adhered to; the type of hydraulic oil to be used as well as other important factors which ensure correct servicing procedures are carried out.
To carry out a hydraulic service, a test rig first needs to be connected to the hydraulic power unit. The unit can then be tested and pressures, filtering qualities and components can be monitored. The servicing itself starts with a flush of the hydraulic system which involves the removing of hydraulic oil and any contaminants which have built up over time. After this deep clean new hydraulic oil can be added ensuring it is the correct viscosity for the hydraulic power unit.
Any hydraulic components which have a limited service life such as filters and seals will also need to be replaced, again referring to the manuals replacement intervals and correct component type. Some modern units come with filter gauges which tell the user when a hydraulic filters life is up and it needs replacement.
Another important system component that needs checking regularly are hydraulic hoses. Made from rubber, they will begin to deteriorate over time, so if you have a hose that has seen a fair bit of use it is vital to check it regularly to ensure no splits or cracks appear as this could affect the system and also health and safety measures as hydraulic injection injuries could potentially occur if high pressure hydraulic fluid is injected out and comes in contact with the skin.
If the above measures are adhered to, especially with hydraulic fluid and filter changes, other more expensive components such as hydraulic pumps will be able to work more effectively as if a pump fails for example, the cost of replacement could be in the £1000s.
It is important to keep a check of the environmental conditions the hydraulic power unit will be subjected to as they could affect performance to an extent. In hot, humid or dusty climates it is important that the filter is checked more regularly than in normal, room temperatures as well as making sure the hydraulic fluid used is up to the temperature changes etc.
The housing of the hydraulic power unit should also be regularly checked if it is subject to hostile conditions of operation as to make sure that any dust or debris does not build up on the unit and possible hinder componentry and general operation including affecting heat transfer and oil temperature issues amongst others.
At Hydraproducts we have our own in-house test rig which can perform many of the functions mentioned above and each individual power unit is fully tested before it goes out to our customers. For more useful information on how to care for your hydraulic power unit, take a look at our Knowledge Hub.