Tensioning: track life vs. convenience
Commit the effort to keeping track tension properly adjusted.
- Check tension every 50 to 100 hours according to the manufacturer’s recommended procedures of use. Adjust the frequency of your tension checks based on the success of the process. If every time you check them, the tracks are way out of adjustment, you need to shorten the interval.
- Over-tensioning will cause premature wear; even early failures in some instances. It also uses more power and fuel.
- Under-tensioning can allow the loader to walk out of the track, putting your operator in a potentially dangerous situation and possibly damaging the track or the machine.
"If you want to run to one side or the other within the specification (range), our recommendation would be to run them slightly on the loose side, because running on the tight side really doesn't do much for you," says Mike Fitzgerald, Bobcat loader product specialist. "If they are loose, the material will shed better. However, if they are way too loose, the tracks will come off; you can go too far."
For more Bobcat maintenance information, visit http://www.bobcat.com/partsandservice/maintenance.