Telehandlers, also called telescopic handlers, are hydraulic lifting units often used in the construction, farming, and agriculture industries.
They’re indispensable as they are versatile in handling a lot of different workloads. They can also adapt to many different tasks around the site, thanks to their interchangeable attachments.
They can be seen in almost any environment requiring heavy workloads, such as at a farm, junkyard, warehouse, or any service businesses like electrical companies. They are terrific machines that make your job easier. You can rely on them to give you flexibility and efficiency in your work. So, it is important to protect and take care of them properly.
Telehandler maintenance is key to its longevity. Here are some tips on telehandler repair and maintenance to make sure you save time and money on your equipment.
Initial Pre-Operation Inspection
The first step to caring for your telehandler is a visual inspection. Operators must do this before they begin their shift. During this inspection, an operator looks for any signs of potential problems that could impact the safe and efficient running of the machine. It is best to refer to the operator’s manual for a complete check before any operation, but here are a few general tips of things to look out for:
- Check for hydraulic leaks and ensure that the proper fluid level is sufficient.
- Check for battery leaks and proper water levels.
- Empty the fuel and water separator.
- If your telehandler uses air-filled tyres, be sure that the tyres are filled with an adequate amount of air.
- Physically check the telehandler for cracks, split welds, or any structural damage.
The next step after the initial physical inspection is ensuring that the telehandler’s basic functions are operating normally. When troubleshooting a problem or simply running routine maintenance, it is important to check all the telehandler’s basic parts and functions. Some of these checks include testing the following:
- Checking the ignition system.
- Checking the backup alarm.
- Ensuring that the service brake is functioning.
- Ensuring that basic arm controls are working smoothly.
- Testing out all steering modes.
- Checking the attachment installed for any problems.
If these functions run as intended, the machine has been checked and can operate safely. Do these checks daily before using the equipment to minimise accidents and ensure that the telehandler is not damaged further in case of any malfunction.
Operating Interval Maintenance
Aside from the daily checks and inspections before use, operators can also implement proper telehandler maintenance when using the equipment. These procedures should be done at regular intervals, ideally, when certain operation milestones have been met, such as every 50 or 100 hours of operation. It is possible to do these checks at longer intervals. However, it is more advisable to do them as frequently as possible to avoid undetected problems getting exponentially worse. So, during these intervals, here are some things you should check:
For every 50 hours:
- Tyres/wheels for wear and tear.
- Hydraulic filter for any issues.
- Belt tension.
- Engine mounts.
- Hose clamps.
- Engine oil.
And for every 100 hours:
- Inspect the axle differential and the axle planetary drive to see if oiling is needed.
Aside from daily and interval checks, you should also do an overall check every quarter to optimise the machine’s performance. These telehandler service checks should include the whole interior of the machine, including the following:
- Battery connections, to see if they are free of corrosion.
- Ensuring that all electrical wiring is functional.
- Maintaining tension on the fork level and auxiliary hydraulic hoses.
- Cleaning the engine air filter.
As usual, it is still best to consult your particular telehandler’s operating manual to see what checks should be done at regular intervals.
If every four months is not enough, operators can also add some yearly checks aside from the functions inspected quarterly. These repair steps include checking the filter to the hydraulic tank, as a dirty filter could lead to the telehandler not being able to perform at maximum efficiency and could cause the part to become damaged.
Is your telehandler working properly?
Telehandlers are pretty easy to maintain and take care of if you know what you’re doing and looking for. Taking the time to follow these simple maintenance steps can save you thousands of dollars in costly repairs. Moreover, regular telehandler maintenance ensures that your equipment is in prime condition and safe to use.
It is crucial to prevent inefficiencies and accidents in your line of work. Caring for the equipment you are using is just the first step.
If you’re still not sure how to maintain your equipment, call in the professionals. Get in touch with us today.