In Florida, hot weather can damage construction equipment in the summer and beyond for most of the year. Operating these machines in Sunshine State means taking special precautions and paying close attention to hot weather preventive maintenance that works well on heavy thermal equipment.
This is important to maintain your fleet’s maximum performance, efficiency, and safety and avoid costly downtime, repairs, and parts replacements. It also extends the life of machines. And it includes specific maintenance to keep heavy equipment well in the heat.
Here are some basic maintenance tasks to ensure you get on the long haul in hot Florida weather.
Hot Weather Preventive Maintenance for Construction Equipment
- Limit exposure to direct sunlight as much as possible.
- During the daily inspection, check that the engines have the correct coolant level, the correct coolant to water ratio, and sufficient oil. This is because heavy equipment passes through these fluids faster with heat.
- Get the suitable types and quantities from the OEM manual.
- Use thicker grease as heat can reduce the adhesive properties of the grease. For information on what type of lubricant to use, where to place it, and how often to reapply, see the OEM manual.
- Test climate systems in taxis to protect operators from the potentially dangerous effects of heat.
- Check leaks and hoses daily for discoloration, excessive cracks, or fissures because these are typical symptoms of overheating.
- Check the air filters daily. During the daily inspection, look for signs of hydraulic leaks and leaks around the seals.
- Check tire pressure daily. Hot weather can weaken tires and increase the risk of explosion.
- Also, keep in mind that heat can increase tire pressure, leading to overinflation, which can increase the risk of explosion.
- Heat and humidity can damage brake components and reduce brake friction, so always check the brakes on all heavy equipment. The cooling system is fundamental in hot and humid weather and will run much faster, so check its components carefully every day.
- Keep radiators and cooling system inlets and outlets clean and free of dirt.
- Ensure there is no corrosion on the radiator and inspect the radiator cap for damage or swelling.