Good practices for tractor tyre care
With a competitive agricultural and industrial sector, there is a large demand for quality tyres. The life of your tyres will, however, depend on the correct application and use – no matter how high the quality of the product.
It is essential to follow specifications to ensure that the tyres are used to their full potential. We therefore look at the most important aspects to ensure you extend the life of your tyres. We believe that an informed consumer is a smart consumer.
Always ensure that the tyre is suited to its application. In other words, ensure that the tyres are the correct product for the machine, trailer or tractor. Tyres are tested, produced and guaranteed for a specific task and terrain, and if it is used properly, the tyre will function at maximum capacity.
One of the most important maintenance features is to always ensure that the tyre pressure is correct.
Tyres are designed to carry a specific weight based on the pressure of the tyre. The pressure of your tyres should be checked daily and the pressure recommended specifically for that tyre should be used.
Once the pressure of the tyres is too high, the tyres stretch and twist out of position. The tyres then do not absorb shock, which results in too much pressure on the rubber, and leads to the tyre being more susceptible to cuts and impact breaks, and the tyre will wear down more quickly.
If the tyre pressure is too high, it could not only damage the tyres themselves, but can also cause soil compaction, which can be harmful to your fields.
It is equally harmful when the tyre pressure is too low and can cause unnecessary distension and warping of the tyres, as well as generate too much heat and cause the tyre shoulder to wear down. Lower tyre pressure can also cause higher fuel consumption.
All tyre pressure refers to the ‘cold’ tyre. This means that the tyre pressure must be measured while the tyre is cold. In other words, the pressure should be measured before the tyres start rolling or after the machine, trailer or tractor has been standing still for a while.
Ensure what the carrying capacity of the tyres should be. The weight of the vehicle – as well as the weight of the product intended for transport – should be determined. It is important that the machine, trailer or tractor should never be overloaded. Overloading is one of the biggest mistakes made by consumers.
Fitting and removing a tyre
It is vital that the correct procedures should be followed when tyres are fitted or removed. Ensure that the vehicle is in a good condition and that the bead of the tyre is positioned correctly on the rim. As soon as the tyres have been fitted, ensure that the width between the tyre and the vehicle is correct – there should be equal spacing between all the tyres and the vehicle.
Check the tyres regularly for cracks, cuts and wear. When a tyre shows serious cuts and/or cracks, or is worn down more than 80%, the tyre should be replaced immediately.
It is important to adopt proper driving habits. Avoid potholes, sharp turns, high speed and sudden braking. Reckless and wrong driving habits can shorten the lifespan of tyres significantly.
Natural elements like the sun, rain, snow and hail can also have a negative effect on tyres. It is essential to store your tyres correctly. Tyres should not be stored for longer than recommended. Make sure that the tyres are not stored in direct sunlight, that the storage area is clean and that the tyres are placed in a vertical position. The tyres should not be stacked on top of each other.
Chemicals play a big role in the life of tractor, trailer and machine tyres. It is important to keep in mind that the rubber of the tyres absorbs certain chemicals more easily than others, and that it is very important to clean your tyres regularly, especially if the fields worked in contain compost. For example, we have a wide range of agricultural tyres that offer a unique self-cleaning function that also helps to extend the life of your tyres.
Always buy the best product you can afford and ensure that you buy a brand that you can trust. It is also important to ensure that the tyres not only have a proper guarantee, but that an after-sales service is offered.
The tips mentioned above are only the most common and important ones to ensure that the life of your farm tyres is extended. It is important to be informed in order to work smartly with your tyres.
Tubestone is the proud as well as exclusive wholesaler of agricultural and construction-range BKT tyres in South Africa and Namibia. BKT is a brand that a producer can/may trust. Tubestone representatives and salespeople are trained to answer all your questions and offer excellent after-sales service.
Article submitted by Lara de Goede, marketing administrator, Tubestone, for SA Graan/Grain August 2017. For more information, send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Publication: August 2018