Aside from human error, the most common source of hydraulic system failure is fluid contamination. In fact, it is estimated that up to 90% of hydraulic failures result from contaminated fluids. Contamination can exist as solid particles, water, air and reactive chemicals – all which can negatively affect fluid functions in one way or another. If any of these functions are debilitated, the system will not perform as it should, and sudden, catastrophic failures become possible. The repairs needed and resulting downtime can easily cost a facility thousands of dollars.
This being considered, an effective program to minimize and remove contaminants must be implemented. We suggest that you perform an oil analysis to determine what types of contaminants are present in your fluid. Keep in mind that you must collect samples from each piece of equipment, as types of contaminants can vary from one another.
To maintain a clean hydraulic system, perform a complete flush of all systems before initial start-up. You should also contact a hydraulic filter supplier in VA to ensure you are using the best-quality elements in all filter housings, and that you are changing them as often as recommended. You should also make sure to use a quality breather on your reservoir, and repair any leaks as soon as possible.