Spring Maintenance for Horizontal Directional Drills

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Spring Maintenance for Horizontal Directional Drills

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Hey drillers — Are you starting a big project this spring? Do you have your HDD drill ready? If not, it’s time to get to it. 

Spring is the best time of year to give your drill rig a thorough inspection, perform routine maintenance and address any potential issues. 

The checklist below will give you a little more direction about what maintenance you should be doing this spring. Make sure to refer to your operator's and maintenance manuals for specific information about each of these features on your rig.

 General inspection

  • Make sure the operator presence system is functioning correctly
  • Grease the machine’s lubrication points
  • If your machine has a cab, top off your windshield wiper fluid and check the cabin air filter
  • Inspect the Rollover Protection System — if you notice any bending, cracking, breaks or signs of flexing, call your Vermeer dealer
  • Make sure there’s no damage or signs of abrasion to the electrical harness
  • Check the horn and the backup alarm system
  • Test the parking brake
  • Check the emergency shut-off switch operation
  • Look through your racks of drill rods and pull out any rods that show signs of wear or are damaged
  • Inspect, clean and grease vises
  • Verify that the machine’s greaser is working properly
  • Test the Strike Alert System and the Remote Lockout System

Engine and drivetrain

  • Check and top off engine oil
  • Inspect the air filter — replace if necessary
  • Check coolant level and condition
  • Clean the radiator/grille of any debris
  • Drain the water/fuel separator
  • Check the planetary oil level and look for any signs of leakage

Check your hydraulic fluid levels 

  • Make sure the controls are working correctly
  • Inspect the hoses and components for leaks and damage
  • Check the vise cylinder pressure and operation of vises
  • Test the machine’s thrust/pullback and rotation pressures
  • Check the operation of shakedown units

Also, review your Vermeer operator’s manual, which covers prepping the work area, preparing the machine, required personal protective equipment and safety warnings. 

There you have it — a quick list of components you should be inspecting, maintaining and repairing this spring. Spending a little time now on preventive maintenance can save you time down the road as the days get longer and you’re busy working.

Getting in touch with your local Vermeer dealer is easy through the dealer locator. If you need an operator’s manual for your drill, you can fill out the form here.


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