How to Identify and Repair Hydraulic System Problems: A Guide from a Trusted Hydraulic Shop

hydraulic repair service

Often, just mentioning the phrase “hydraulic systems problems” is enough to send shivers down the spines of many business owners, manufacturers, and industrial facility managers. Hydraulic systems are vital in powering various machines across numerous industries, including automotive, fabrication, and construction. A well-functioning hydraulic system ensures optimal performance from heavy equipment to precision machining tools.  

A hydraulic system is a technology that uses a liquid (hydraulic fluid) to transmit power and perform mechanical work. It is widely used due to its versatility, efficiency, and precise control capabilities. However, like any mechanical system, hydraulics can face issues over time. This guide will walk you through identifying and repairing common hydraulic system problems. Whether you are dealing with a hydraulic hose repair, cylinder repair, or needing a reliable hydraulic repair service, Hamilton Machine is the answer when asking, “Who is an experienced and trusted hydraulic repair shop near me?” 

Hydraulic Systems 101: A Short Synopsis 

Let’s look at a breakdown of how a hydraulic system works and its key components: 

Working Principle: 

A hydraulic system operates on the principle that a change in pressure applied to an enclosed fluid is transmitted undiminished to all portions of the fluid and the walls of its container. 

Key Components: 

These include hydraulic fluid, usually an oil-based liquid, used to transmit power within the system and chosen for its incompressible properties and high resistance to temperature changes; a pump that is responsible for generating the necessary fluid flow and pressure by drawing in fluid and pressurizing it before sending it through the system; actuators like cylinders and motors that convert fluid pressure into linear mechanical force or rotary mechanical motion; valves for directional control, pressure relief, and flow control; reservoirs, filters and strainers, hoses and pipes, and finally an accumulator that stores hydraulic energy in the form of pressurized liquid.    

How it works:  

The process begins with the pump drawing in hydraulic fluid from the reservoir. It then pressurizes this fluid. The valves direct the pressurized fluid to the actuator (cylinder or motor). 

The pressurized fluid pushes the piston into a cylinder, creating a linear motion. In a motor, it causes the rotor to turn, generating a rotary motion. After performing its work, the fluid is returned to the reservoir for recirculation. 

The advantages of hydraulic systems include transmitting large amounts of power, controlling speed, force, and position for accuracy, operating for long periods with minimal wear and tear, and high efficiency. But as with anything mechanical with numerous moving parts and functions, the need for hydraulic service repairs can arise.   

Identifying Hydraulic System Problems 

  • Leakage Issues. One of the most common problems in hydraulic systems is leakage. It can occur at various points in the system, including hoses, fittings, seals, and connections. Signs of leakage include visible oil spills, reduced fluid levels, and decreased performance. To identify the source of the leak, it is necessary to clean the affected area and inspect for signs of wetness or oil residue. Our hydraulic repair services will tighten loose connections, replace damaged hoses or seals, and ensure secure fittings. 
  • Loss of Power. If your machine is experiencing a noticeable loss of power, it could indicate a problem with the hydraulic system. This may be due to issues like air in the system, pump inefficiency, or a malfunctioning relief valve. The experts at Hamilton Machine will check for air bubbles in the hydraulic fluid, inspect the pump for wear or damage, and verify that the relief valve is functioning correctly. Once these issues are assessed, we will thoroughly explain the diagnosis and the machine service repairs required.  
  • Unusual Noises. Sometimes, things really do go bump in the night- and in the daytime, too! Unusual noises, such as grinding, banging, or whining, are clear indicators of a problem within the hydraulic system. These noises may be caused by cavitation, aeration, or worn-out components. Cavitation occurs when air bubbles form in the fluid, leading to a knocking sound. Aeration is the introduction of air into the system, resulting in a whining noise. Worn-out components can lead to various types of unusual sounds. To address these issues, consult Hamilton Machine for a comprehensive assessment of hydraulic repair services. 

Repairing Common Hydraulic System Problems 

Hydraulic Hose Repair. Hydraulic hoses are critical components that transmit fluid under high pressure. Over time, they can wear out or develop leaks. To repair a hydraulic hose, we identify the damaged hose and inspect all hoses for visible signs of damage, such as cracks, bulges, or leaks. Our machining shop and hydraulic repairs services maintain the exact tools and equipment necessary for expert hose repairs. Once the repairs have been made, our technicians will turn on the hydraulic system and check for any signs of leakage. 

Hydraulic Cylinder Repair. Hydraulic cylinders are responsible for converting fluid power into mechanical motion. When a cylinder malfunctions, it can lead to reduced performance or complete failure. To repair a hydraulic cylinder, our technicians will inspect the cylinder to identify any visible signs of damage, such as bent rods, leaking seals, or worn-out components. After carefully disassembling the cylinder, we will replace any worn-out seals, rods, or other components with high-quality replacements. Once the repairs have been completed, we will put the cylinder back together, ensuring all components are correctly aligned and tightened. As a final step, our hydraulics repair services professionals will test the cylinder’s functionality to ensure everything is in working order and maintaining optimal capacity. 

Maintaining a well-functioning hydraulic system is crucial for the optimal performance of your machines. By promptly identifying and addressing common issues, you can extend the lifespan of your equipment and prevent costly downtime. Whether you need hydraulic hose repair, cylinder repair, or comprehensive hydraulic repair service, trust the experts at Hamilton Machine, an exceptional hydraulic repair service near you just one phone call away. To learn more about our services, schedule a consultation today