Check out the inventory of used hydraulic excavators available at Interstate Heavy Equipment. Unreserved onsite auctions, and for sale online at if you’re looking for one. However, before you go out to inspect the equipment you want, look for these five things to consider to buy excavators to avoid costly repairs or replacements.

1. Movement or play.

A damaged slew ring in a used hydraulic excavator can be one of the most expensive parts to repair or replace, so make sure you spin the hydraulic excavator housing to a quarter turn and check for any play or movement in the slew ring. Because the slew ring bearing has a play limit, it’s a good idea to measure it and compare it to the specifications.

Look for play or movement at the boom, stick, and bucket’s connecting points as well. All pins and bushings should be as tight as possible. Any loose connections, especially between the excavator stick and bucket, could result in a loss of excavation precision and the need for repairs.

2. Defects like cracks, bends, and dents.

Cracks are never a good indication, especially when they appear in critical connection points like the boom and stick or the stick and bucket. The presence of cracks or substantial bends could indicate that the excavator’s overall structural integrity has been compromised, necessitating the replacement of the boom or stick. Likewise, large dents on the hydraulic excavator’s undercarriage or the top of the excavator’s stick could indicate that the machine was not properly maintained.

3. Leaks

Look for symptoms of leaks in the hydraulic pump chamber. Ensure that all hoses, lines, and cylinders are in good working order. Inspect the slew ring, swing bearing, and swivel joint for leaks that could indicate excessive play or movement. Any leaks must be fixed to maintain the hydraulic excavator’s safe and continuous functioning.

things to consider when buying excavators-JD-35ZTS
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4. Hours meter that is inaccurate or broken.

Check the control pedals for wear if the hour meter isn’t working or the reading isn’t correct. Excessive wear may indicate that the hydraulic excavator has recorded more hours than indicated.

5. Scalloping

Look for scalloping or half-mooned structures between the excavator bucket teeth. Scalloping does not always mean that a bucket has to be replaced, but it does show that the cutting force has decreased.

The suggestions above are good to start when looking for a secondhand excavator. Above all, if you have any doubts, examine the maintenance records. And have a trained mechanic or expert inspect the equipment.

Source: RitchieBrothers

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