The most critical components of skid steer loaders, colloquially known as Bobcats, are its tires that provide stability and enhanced surface grip to the machine as it maneuvers tough terrains to get the job done. Tires are also the fastest wearing component of a skid steer, simply because of the kind of use and abuse they are subjected to on a daily basis, particularly on dirt tracks and off-road surfaces. Cuts in the rubber, easily worn out tread patterns and loss of surface grip are a commonplace occurrence for an owner of this machine. Now these are issues that you cannot control – after all, what use is a Bobcat if you don’t drive it on a beastly work-site terrain! But by controlling certain intrinsic factors, you may be able to considerably extend the life of your skid steer tires, provided that you follow the below mentioned maintenance guidelines. Let’s find out:
- Tire pressure
By maintaining the right tire pressure at all times, you can easily control the expected traction levels and the wear & tear of your skid steer tires set. Check the tire pressure at regular intervals and if it varies, make sure you fill it up through an air pumping machine before you head out towards your work site. Regular checking will also bring hidden cuts and tire damage to light which might be causing air to leak out of the tires faster than usual.
Don’t operate your machine in an overloaded condition – it will result in damaging your machine and tires. Your skid steer’s tires will be taking the major brunt of damage as you move the machine on an uneven surface in an overburdened state. Choose to operate your vehicle only with recommended load as indicated by your skid steer manufacturer.
Running your bobcat at high speeds will result in buildup of internal heat in the tire and will result in premature wear. The heat generated will also result in increased pressure inside the tire, which will make them more prone to bursts and leaks. High speed driving of skid steers is also an issue when you consider the uneven surfaces that you will be running the machine on as the damaging impact of sharp rocks and pebbles on your tire surfaces is only elevated this way.
- The Man on the machine
Tire life is mostly in the hands of the person using the machine. Tire life can be reduced up to 40 percent if the person behind the wheel is pushing the machine too hard. Well trained drivers can avoid the adverse conditions and use the skid steer wisely, protecting its tires from unnecessary damage and abuse.
Hope this information will help you in extending the life and usability of your skid steer tires.