Your business is only as good as your equipment. If your machinery doesn’t operate properly, you can’t meet your customers’ needs. Whether you are dealing with an excavator, mini-excavator, or another piece of heavy machinery, when a problem happens, being able to identify it quickly can help to get you back to business sooner.
Bobcat, Caterpillar, John Deere, or Komatsu, it doesn’t matter what brand your equipment is. Eventually, every piece of machinery is likely going to need some kind of troubleshooting.In this article, we’re going to look at the causes of a weak final drive. While a weak travel motor may result from a failure within the drive itself, there can be other causes from adjacent systems, too. Let’s explore both possibilities.
Little things can cause big problems. Excavator operators can overlook a clogged case drain filter, which allows pressure to build up in the case drain line. Cleaning or replacing the filter can restore a final drive’s smooth operation.
An excavator’s tracks can impact the function of the travel motor. Too much track tension means that additional torque is needed from the final drive. This extra power requirement reduces the ability of the final drive to perform well.
If the tracks appear to be at the correct level of tension, inspect the idlers, rollers, and the track itself for any parts that may be failing.
An excavator swivel joint is usually out of sight, so it may also be out of mind. But leaks in this area should be one of the first things you look for. Also known as a rotary manifold or center swivel, the swivel joint enables the housing to turn while maintaining correct hydraulic pressure. A leaking swivel joint seal is a fairly common problem, especially when the equipment approaches 5,000 hours of use.
A screeching noise that’s accompanied by a power outage is a classic sign of a weak charge pump on a skid steer or track loader. It might feel like driving with an engaged emergency brake when the charge pump is receiving insufficient pressure. Rule out charge pump issues, including oil pressure and flow problems, before attempting to repair or replace the final drive.
Issues with the hydraulic system can also cause problems with your final drive. A low level of hydraulic oil translates into reduced power. A quick check of the hydraulic oil could resolve the problem with your equipment.
Before you spend time and money to replace a final drive motor, be sure to check the speed control system to see if your travel motor is stuck in high-speed mode. Some kinds of equipment have two speed settings, which can impact their performance. While this is not an everyday occurrence, if your machinery is only steering to one side or if it has issues traveling up steep grades, this might be your problem.
It’s essential to identify possible causes for a weak final drive before spending the money on a replacement. A malfunctioning track, poorly maintained hydraulic system, or a blocked case drain filter can cause problems to resurface again, even if your excavator gets a new travel motor. Be sure to exhaust all of the other possibilities before you invest in a new final drive.
While you can’t fend off every kind of malfunction, there are a few steps that you can take to proactively maintain your final drive, reducing the likelihood of downtime. These include:
Bobcat, Caterpillar, Hitachi, John Deere, Komatsu, and Kubota are just some of the superior heavy equipment part brands offered at MiniFinalDrives.com. Our family-owned company is nationally recognized for our extensive selection of new OEM Final Drive Motors with Travel Motors. Call us today for responsive service and ultra-fast shipping!
Manufacturers' trademarked names, models, part numbers, symbols, and related descriptions are provided for reference only to help you with finding the right aftermarket replacement final drive for your machine. This reference information does not imply that any items for sale are the product of those referenced manufacturers and does not imply that L&M HydraComm LLC is an authorized source nor agent of the referenced machine manufacturers.