by Amy RodriguezUpdated on September 26, 2017
Heavy machinery, such as the Caterpillar 518 skidder, requires periodic maintenance to function properly in the field. Skidders are primarily used to move heavy items on a job site, such as logs. The machine must grasp and transport these heavy objects in a timely manner. However, an unexpected malfunction of the 518 skidder can stop an entire job site from operating. As a result, the skidder will require a quick and accurate repair process.
Visually check the winch oil level through its viewing cutout on the skidder. The winch cannot drag or move properly without a proper oil level. Refill as needed.
Inspect and adjust the winch reel and cable. Make sure there is not too much slack in the cable. Replace the cord if it is damaged or stretched.
Confirm that the winch driveshaft is well lubricated with grease. Add more fat, if necessary. A dry driveshaft can easily break from weight stresses.
Check all oil levels in the transmission, hydraulics, and engine. Add oil, if necessary. Low oil levels can cause mechanical parts to seize and contribute to engine damage.
Drain the fuel tank. Make sure there is no sediment inside the tank. Sediment, such as dirt or sand, can easily infiltrate the 518 skidder’s fuel tank during normal operation. However, sediment can build up over time, causing blockages within the fuel system.
Place the battery tester leads on the 518 skidder’s battery contacts. Verify that the battery is still operational. Replace the battery if it cannot hold a charge. Also, confirm that the battery electrolyte level is adequate. Low electrolyte levels can indicate a bad battery.
Be careful when working near the machine’s battery. Do not allow the test leads to touch each other during battery testing processes. The battery can cause a short circuit in the tester or possibly an electric shock to the technician.