Different methods to changing a hydraulic filter

When changing out a hydraulic filter it is important to know that there are different opinions on when this needs to occur. To determine which method works best for you, you will need to understand the idea behind each method and see what works best for you and your hydraulic system.  

Preventative vs reactive maintenance

Reactive maintenance is simply running the equipment until issues start to show, and then determining what would be the best way to solve the issue. It is simple, straightforward and the most convenience approach. However, if maintenance is put off for longer than it should be, more damage can occur to the system, and force more downtime than is needed.

Preventative maintenance occurs when the filters are replaced before they fail and cause any additional damage. This method is more cost effective than reactive maintenance and is known to keep hydraulic systems in top working condition for longer. Using this approach to changing out hydraulic filters can save you money and unnecessary downtime, however this may not suit everybody’s needs.

Manufacturer’s guidelines

Following the manufacturer’s guidelines is one way to make preventative maintenance work for you. When to change the hydraulic filter should be specified in the manual which will give you an idea of when the filter will not be as effective as it should be. As the manufacturer is more familiar with the system, it makes sense that these guidelines should be adhered to when it comes to looking after the equipment.

Usually, these recommendations are made on the number of hours that a filter is used. This can allow you to make a maintenance schedule for when components need to be replaced and for when maintenance needs to take place. However, it must be noted that hydraulic filters also accumulate debris at uneven rates, so it is impossible to specify what the contaminant levels are, making it difficult to determine exactly when the filters should be replaced.

The manufacturers specifications is also working on the assumption that the correct filter is being used, and not another manufacturers. If this is the case the maintenance needs will be different.

Monitoring performance

Monitoring the performance of the system can give you an accurate idea of how the system is performing, and when to replace the filter. Checking fluid pressure levels to see if the filter is nearing its lifespan allows you to replace filters when needed, avoiding unnecessary downtime, maintenance and costs. Predictive maintenance is an option that works in this way using technology to feed data from sensors into machine-learning algorithms which predict when you need to change the filters. However, this does come with at a high cost involvement.

Power Team SA with years of experience within the hydraulic industry understand that the needs of all their clients are different, and it is because of this that they are on hand to help from the beginning all the way through to after sales support. Power Team SA offers extensive knowledge and advice in providing effective solutions.