Making sure that your equipment is in good working condition on a daily basis not only ensures that you get the most out of your harvest, but also that you’ll ensure worker safety. You’ll also extend the life of your machinery.
The following are some daily maintenance checks that will help keep your harvest equipment running its best:
1. Daily cleaning
Daily cleaning removes debris from the deck area, alternator screens, engine compartment, radiator coils, and more. You’ll also want to clean cotton buildup from basket screens, finger grates, and the hood underneath the basket to prevent the hood from being pressed down against the engine.
2. Check fluid levels
Check your engine oil, hydraulic fluid, and coolant levels daily. Also, make sure that your fuel tank is filled, and inspect your tires for any damage and the proper pressure.
3. Inspect the cleaner
Check your cleaner for saw damage, residue buildup, loose belts, damaged grid bars, slip clutches, debris buildup, etc. Safety: Make sure the engine is off and the key is removed any time you are working on your cleaner to keep someone else from starting the machine.
Your daily maintenance should include lubricating steering axle pivot points and ball joints, basket rock shaft pivots, basket hydraulic cylinder pivots, vane pivot points, header rockshaft pivots, and final drive collars.
5. Check row units
Potential row unit issues include clogged grate panels, worn or damaged bats and brushes, worn gears and bearings, etc. It’s also a good idea to check your cotton stripper’s bats and brushes every time you take a break during harvest. They can wear out quickly. Safety: Any time you work on the header, make sure the header safety stops are engaged.
6. Follow the owner’s manual
Always make sure that you’re following maintenance procedures at manufacturer-suggested intervals found in your machine’s owner manual. It is very important to use all the safety precautions when working on your cotton stripper. When you are working under the basket, always make sure the basket lock valve is engaged.
If your daily inspection has you worried about the overall condition of your cotton stripper, give the professionals at Hurst Farm Supply a call today.