Fluid Leaks – The Silent Hydraulic System Killer
Leaking Cylinders may still operate, but are a massive problem
Hydraulic cylinders are essential components in many industrial applications, from construction and food production, to transport and aerospace. These cylinders are designed to provide powerful and controlled linear motion, thanks to pressurised hydraulic fluid.
When hydraulic cylinders begin to leak, they may still work, however there are major problems ahead. So, what are the ramifications of leaking hydraulic cylinders, and why addressing this problem is crucial for efficiency and safety.
Leaking Hydraulic Cylinders: A Hidden Problem
Leaking hydraulic cylinders may not be immediately noticeable, as they can continue to perform normally. This can give a false sense of security. However, hydraulic cylinder leaks are a hidden problem that can have several adverse effects on operations, safety, and costs.
1. Reduced Efficiency
A leaking hydraulic cylinder means that the hydraulic fluid is escaping from the system. This fluid is essential for transmitting force and controlling the motion of the cylinder. As the fluid leaks, the system loses pressure, resulting in a decrease in efficiency. The hydraulic cylinder may still function, but it will require more time and energy to complete its tasks, leading to decreased productivity and higher energy consumption.
2. Increased Downtime
In the long run, ignoring hydraulic cylinder leaks can lead to sudden failures, unexpected downtime, and costly repairs. As the leak worsens, the system will eventually stop - bringing production to a halt until it’s resolved.
3. Safety Hazards
Leaking hydraulic cylinders pose safety hazards to personnel and equipment. The leaked hydraulic fluid can create slippery surfaces, increasing the risk of accidents. Furthermore, reduced hydraulic pressure can result in uncontrolled or jerky movements of machinery, potentially causing injuries or damage.
4. Environmental Concerns
When hydraulic fluid starts to leak it becomes an environmental hazard. The leakage of hydraulic fluid into the environment can contaminate soil, water sources, and air quality. This not only violates environmental regulations but can also lead to costly cleanup efforts and damage to a company's reputation.
5. Costly Repairs
Procrastinating maintenance on leaking hydraulic cylinders can result in more extensive damage over time. What might have been a minor issue could escalate into a major problem, requiring expensive repairs or even cylinder replacement. Fixing the leak early is typically more cost-effective than allowing the leak to worsen.
Leaking hydraulic cylinders are a problem that should not be underestimated. While they may continue to function, they have the potential to decrease efficiency, increase downtime, create safety hazards, harm the environment, and lead to costly repairs. Timely repair of hydraulic cylinder leaks are essential to ensure the continued reliability and safety of your systems. The good news is that Flotek have fixed 1000’s of hydraulic system leaks – it’s often not that difficult.
We’re the Hydraulic System experts - it’s our day job!
If you see a leak in your hydraulic system, you can call us on 9397 0044. We’ll have one of our Technicians to your site within 24 hours anywhere in greater Melbourne to identify the source of the leak, and take action to fix it.
Our mission is to keep your production going – it’s all about More Up-Time.