Taking the necessary precautions for safe hydraulic cylinder storage.
Prevention is better than cure. Fact. So here are some tips to help ensure that your hydraulic cylinder storage procedures are up to scratch.
Clen and dry area
Always keep cylinders of all sizes in a clean, dry area and preferably indoors. This is imortant and will be worth it in the long run!
Cover exposed metal
Keep all of the exposed metal covered and protected. The internal surfaces of the cylinder can be smothered with grease. Moreover, a special tape, that has been infused with oil, should be wrapped around the exposed chrome on the rod. The rod must however be retracted before the tape is applied, otherwise the tape could damage the rod seal.
If there is no oil in the cylinder, it will most probably have been replaced by air. Problems then arise if the air isn’t dry and the environment temperature decreases and reaches dew point, causing moisture to form inside the cylinder. This, in turn, could lead to rust and pitting, which can cause serious issues if the cylinder is in operation. Not only does it decrease the effectiveness of the cylinder, but it can also significantly reduce the life of the cylinder.
This issue can be avoided if you thoroughly clean the inside of the cylinder and then fill it with clean oil. But care must be taken due to the ambient temperature. For example, if your hydraulic cylinder storage takes place over winter, and it is then taken out again to be reinstalled in the summer. In this case, the oil’s ambient temperature in the cylinder will change.
Oil can be filtered into a cylinder during storage if you take the following precautions:
- Ensure that the temperature changes within the environment won’t have the outcome of static pressure that surpasses the operating pressure of the cylinder;
- Only put oil in the cylinder when it has been fully retracted and through the rod-port. By doing it this way, you avoid a hazardous pressure increase;
- Service port plugs or blanks are good to use and they are rated for the operating pressure of the cylinder;
- A warning needs to be placed at each service port;
- Make sure that there is a way of checking and release any pressure before these services port blanks are detached.
Finally, make sure that the cylinder doesn’t experience any pressure intensification when exposed to alternating temperatures once being installed onto a system after a long period of storage.