During harvest season, you and your operation are both at the mercy of time. So, why spend what little time you have making repairs when you can get ahead of them before even getting to work?
Daily cotton stripper maintenance can go a long way when it comes to maximizing the efficiency of your most valuable machines. In fact, taking the time to double-check that everything is in acceptable operating order can:
- Minimize downtime caused by unforeseen repairs
- Increase crop yield
- Protect the people working on your operation
Let’s get into some of the easiest ways to give your cotton stripper the work it needs to perform as intended all harvest season.
Cleaning and Lubricating
Conduct a thorough cleaning of all areas of your cotton stripper, including:
- the deck area
- alternator screens
- engine compartment
- radiator coils
- fan shroud
- basket screens
- finger grates
Lubricating these areas should also be a regular part of your daily maintenance regimen:
- steering axle pivot points
- ball joints
- basket rock shaft pivots
- basket hydraulic cylinder pivots
- vane pivot points
- header rock shaft pivots
- final drive collars
Check your oil, hydraulic fluid, and coolant levels every day. Also, make sure that your fuel tank is filled, and inspect your tires for any damage and ensure that they are at their proper pressure.
Check Row Units
Check your row units to ensure that there are no clogged grate panels, worn or damaged bats and brushes, or worn gears and bearings. As bats and brushes can wear out quickly, inspect them every time you give your cotton stripper a break during harvest.
Inspect the Field Cleaner
Check your cleaner for saw damage, residue build-up, loose belts, damaged grid bars, slip clutches and debris build-up.
Inspect Your Fire Extinguisher
As a cotton farmer, you are susceptible to two types of fires: cotton lint fires and electrical/chemical/grease fires, both of which can be equally devastating to your equipment and your harvest operation. For that reason, it’s important to regularly conduct fire extinguisher inspections to ensure that they are free of any damage and are ready to work should you ever need them.
Proper Shut-Down Procedures
Bring your cotton stripper to a complete stop, place the machine in park, engage the parking brake, and disengage all units, the fan, and the field cleaner. Once the engine has been idle for a few moments, turn off the stripper’s ignition switch. When it comes to such a high-powered piece of machinery, it’s always important to remember and follow the best safety procedures. Always double-check that your cotton stripper is off and that the keys are removed before performing maintenance.
Refer to the Owner’s Manual
In your machine’s owner’s manual, you’ll find the best guidelines regarding manufacturer-suggested maintenance intervals, as well as important safety guidelines.
Schedule Professional Service at Hurst Farm Supply
In the event that you need an extra hand for your cotton stripper maintenance, give your friends at Hurst Farm Supply a call. Our certified John Deere technicians are trained to be there for anything you may need for harvest season, including inspections, parts, and repairs. Click below to schedule STAR service today!