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To change or not change hydro fluid

Post in 'The Gear' started by adrpga498, Nov 24, 2012.

  1. adrpga498

    adrpga498 Minister of Fire

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    Manual says to chnage hydrofilter at 50 hours.Did that . Change fluid at 100 hrours. Getting close to that time now on a 6 year old splitter(MTD) Sears 27 ton. What say you the experts.

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  2. MasterMech

    MasterMech Guest

    100 hours is awfully short for a hydro fluid change interval but doing it after the first 100 and then leaving it alone from there is not crazy talk. How much fluid does it hold? Sometimes when a machine takes 9-10 gallons or more, this kind of service gets a bit pricey. It's up to you if you're ok with the cost of the oil.

    Definitely do the filter change. The reason for a short 1st oil change with any machine, is new components will "wear to fit" leaving metal shavings in the oil. These shavings will plug up a filter much faster than normal and by changing the fluid along with the filter, you carry away any debris that may have settled in the tank. Most hydraulic log splitters filter the return line to the tank so any debris coming out of a new pump/valve/cylinder should be caught in the filter before it even has a chance to settle in the tank. Which is the reason for my hesitation to recommend dumping what often amounts to $80 or more in hydraulic oil that is most likely in pristine shape.
    Backwoods Savage and Nixon like this.
  3. adrpga498

    adrpga498 Minister of Fire

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    Holds 3 and half gallons of fluid. Still looks very clean.I may just change the filter at this time.
  4. 'bert

    'bert Minister of Fire

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    + for a filter change only. Does the tank have a magnetic plug? Have a look if it does and see if any filings are collecting on the plug and decide from there.
  5. adrpga498

    adrpga498 Minister of Fire

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    No magnetic plug that I can tell, just a short dip stick from filler top.
  6. adrpga498

    adrpga498 Minister of Fire

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    Thnaks for the info guys. I will look at the fluid closer during the upcomming filter change and then decide on replacing fluid.
  7. WhitePine

    WhitePine Feeling the Heat

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    Change the filter and the fluid. The filter likely is fairly coarse and has a bypass. You have no way of knowing if it is clogged and bypassing or not. In any event, the fluid may look clean while still containing contaminates finer than the filter can catch, but still large enough to cause extra wear to the pump and cylinder. That's probably why they recommend 100 hour intervals.

    Long fluid change intervals require more sophisticated filtering and fluid management than is usually provided on consumer grade equipment.

    You could always look up the filter and see what its micron rating is, and if it has a bypass. More information can't hurt.
  8. MasterMech

    MasterMech Guest

    That's a relatively small amount of fluid and using TSC Universal Hyd. oil should cost about $40 to change.
  9. Tramontana

    Tramontana Burning Hunk

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    Other factors to consider, how is the equipment used, in what environment, and how has it been stored?

    Are you running it hot, and putting away wet? What duty cycle? Humidity will be drawn from outside air, and condense in the warm tank as it cools. Storage is similar in issue. Is it stored indoors or out, protected from weather/humidity?

    One option is to pull a uniform sample and have it tested if you have someone locally, or mail in if no one is close. Most testing companies will give results and recommendations based upon their findings.

    Here is an interesting article;

    http://hydraulicspneumatics.com/200...s/Article/False/6436/TechZone-HydraulicFluids

    You've noted that fluid isn't too expensive, thus I would recommend meeting or exceeding the manufacturer's recommendations. You might also consider adding better grade fluid and air filters.

    Cheers and good luck.
  10. WhitePine

    WhitePine Feeling the Heat

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    Somewhat overkill for a homeowner splitter it would seem. Hydraulic fluid one time prepaid mail in test kit @$59.95 (Advanced Fluid Systems) versus $30-40 worth of new fluid. :eek:

    Not really a hard choice.
  11. Tramontana

    Tramontana Burning Hunk

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    ...just as I pointed out. Perhaps not clearly enough?

    Some splitters will have larger tanks, some perhaps utilize more expensive hydro fluid, both of which might make testing more advantageous.

    Cheers!

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