Maintaining the hydraulic system is very important in keeping your drilling rigs efficiently running today until future use. In Australia, it has become so much more productive to prevent any breakdown through the implementation of regular maintenance instead of dealing with downtime and to prevent unnecessary costs that are associated with any hydraulic failure. But it’s important to note that the emphasis needs to be on proactive instead of reactive maintenance.
Important Tips in Preventive Maintenance
When it comes to preventive maintenance, it is a must that you have a clear understanding of the operating conditions of the machine. There is no such thing as fast and hard rule that can be established given the variety of circumstances.
But there is one thing that will always remain certain- frequent maintenance will help increase the lifespan of your system. Other things that you need to consider should include the hours that the rigs operate, the flow and pressure, the environment that it is exposed to, etc. Gathering this information will be very helpful as you follow the maintenance guidelines set by the manufacturers while you tweak the recommendations to meet your specific operating conditions.
Developing a Maintenance Program
It is always a good practice if you develop a maintenance program of your own that can be followed by the personnel. It is important that it is clean and specific. You should also take good notes with regards to your maintenance, as well as the parts and tools that are accessible.
Some of the most important components of a hydraulic system includes a hydraulic tank, hydraulic fluid filter, hydraulic pump, and air breather. The basic maintenance for these components needs to include replacing the filter, checking and recording of the hydraulic pressures and flow, cleaning the hydraulic tank inside and outside, as well as inspecting the hydraulic fittings and hoses.
The manual from the manufacturer of drilling rigs in Australia need to have a hydraulic circuit diagram. Reading and understanding the diagrams is a must when performing troubleshooting and maintenance.
Lastly, it is very important to replace the filters and the hydraulic fluid that was drained from the system should be disposed of properly then fill the tank with clean hydraulic fluid. Downtime and unnecessary expenses will be avoided by simply following a regular preventive maintenance.
Manufacturers of these rigs would often recommend periodic draining of the system and refilling it with new fluid. Another best practice is to drain the system and then allow any impurity that has been suspended in the fluid to be properly removed. If the deposits have already accumulated and it’s not easy to drain them, you can flush them using a light viscosity fluid that has a rust inhibitor to protect the surfaces of the metal against rust formation.