Construction doesn’t stop completely when the frigid winter weather sets in. Because of this, you’ll need to make sure that your equipment can run smoothly in less-than-ideal conditions. Winter equipment usage may be rare, but knowing how to successfully navigate it could allow you to complete the project you’re working on in the time allotted for it.
Understanding how to run heavy equipment in the cold can give you a leg up on the competition and make your project a fruitful and potentially lucrative one.
This article will cover a few pointers that you can use to ensure that your heavy equipment works as intended this winter.
Conduct preventative maintenance
The best way to avoid problems with your equipment in the winter is to head them off at the pass. Performing detailed inspections and taking preventative maintenance measures before you use your equipment in frigid temperatures can help you avoid winter-related issues. Some steps you can take include checking tire pressure, swapping out fluids and putting in an engine block heater.
Check the manufacturer’s instructions
Each piece of equipment comes with a manual, and you should read through it thoroughly to ensure that you’re taking the best possible care of your equipment. Often, the manufacturer will provide specific instructions detailing how to combat the cold, and you should take note of these measures and put them into practice. Examples of manufacturer’s recommendations include fluid types, how to warm up the machine and which type of fuel to use.
Take care of the battery
When learning how to run heavy equipment in the cold, you’ll need to monitor the battery. This is because cold temperatures can reduce the battery’s cranking capacity by as much as 35 percent. In addition to that, cold weather can make your machines more difficult to start.
As such, you’ll need to monitor the battery and take great pains to ensure that it’s working properly. You should check it regularly to establish that it’s not corroded and that the terminals and connections are sound. Cleaning the battery with a wire brush and spraying it with terminal protectant should keep it running smoothly.
Clean the equipment
A key component to responsible winter equipment usage is making sure that it’s clean. Over time, dirt and mud can become caked on your equipment. When temperatures plunge, that mud can freeze and potentially cause significant damage.
There’s also the issue of salt being used on roads to prevent freezing that you’ll have to deal with. If your equipment is clean, it will run better and you should be able to reduce the number of winter-related issues you run into.
Store equipment and fluids inside if possible
The best way to protect your equipment from the cold is to limit its exposure to the frosty air. If you can, you should try to store your equipment indoors, as this will largely limit the amount of cold-related damage that it will incur. The exception to this is if you must leave your equipment idling overnight. In that case, do not store your machines indoors.
Call for your equipment rental today
Now that you know how to run heavy equipment in the cold and some winter equipment usage tips, call us at Ram Rent-All, Inc. We’ve been offering high-quality equipment rentals at reasonable rates for over 30 years, so call us about your equipment rental today.