Down To Earth: Skid Steer Maintenance Tips
Down To Earth: Skid Steer Maintenance Tips

Skid Steer Maintenance Tips

Avoiding unexpected downtime on your machines is important if you want to keep your farm running. With regular skid steer maintenance, your farm equipment can stay working so you can too.

Ben Rice | Agriculture Industry Representative

Keeping your farm equipment running smoothly is key to a productive day of work. When you experience unexpected downtime, it can cost you. That’s why you should be proactive about machine maintenance and stick to a schedule. Check out some skid steer maintenance tips below.

Skid Steer Maintenance Schedules

One of the best ways to make sure your skid steer or compact track loader is in good shape is to stick to a regular maintenance schedule. With scheduled maintenance, you can lower your overall maintenance costs by avoiding more expensive repairs down the road and extend the lifetime of your machine.

Protect Your Machine From Rust

Farmers, especially dairy farmers, have another unique challenge when it comes to equipment. Corrosive environments aren’t very machine-friendly and can lead to rust damage if left untreated. Make sure to wash your machine as often as you can to remove any build-up.

Skid Steer and Compact Track Loader Daily Maintenance

You shouldn’t just perform maintenance according to your schedule, though. There are some skid steer maintenance best practices that you should do daily before running your machines.

  • At the back of the machine:
    • Check the service chart in the rear door – it provides more information on service schedules and maintenance points. You can also look at your Operation and Maintenance Manual (OMM) for more information on the points listed here
    • Check the oil level using the dipstick and add oil if needed
    • Look at the fuel water separator bolt for signs of water and drain if needed
    • Raise the grill and check for debris
    • Check the coolant level – the coolant sight gauge is on the left side of the radiator – adding coolant if needed
    • Lower the grill

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  • At the left side of the machine:
    • Check lift arm brace and make sure it’s secure
    • Remove cab fresh air filter and inspect it and the seal for damage, cleaning it if needed with low-pressure air
    • For compact track loaders, clean the undercarriage daily
      • Inspect the track and undercarriage wheels for any signs of damage, removing any dirt or debris
      • Measure the sprocket teeth
      • Inspect the track tension
    • For skid steer loaders
      • Inspect the tires for any damage or cuts
      • Make sure the tire lug nuts are tight and check tire pressure
  • At the front of the machine:
    • Check lift arms and hydraulic connections for signs of damage
    • Check the work tool for anything out of the ordinary
    • Remove any debris between the lift arm and work tool and the work tool coupler plate
  • At the ride side of the machine:
    • Check lift arms and connections as you did on the left side
    • Check the hydraulic oil level using the sight gauge and add oil if needed
    • If your model needs Diesel Exhaust Fluid (DEF), the fill location is on the right side of the machine
  • In general:
    • Grease all the grease fittings at their recommended intervals
    • If your machine has a full color Advanced Display, you can check the service menu for approaching maintenance intervals

By using these daily skid steer maintenance best practices and sticking to regularly scheduled maintenance, you can keep your agriculture equipment running smoothly all year long. For more on skid steer maintenance, check out this guide.

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Ben Rice
Ben Rice

Ben Rice

Agriculture Industry Representative

Having spent his formative years on a tobacco farm, Ben Rice went on in the agriculture field to earn degrees in Agriculture Business Management and Agriculture Science from North Carolina State University. Rice now brings his invaluable expertise to Caterpillar as an industry sales and service representative.





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