The winter season entails squaring things away for next year’s harvest. This means pulling any additional crops and tilling the field before the snow comes your way. However, while you’re busy with these tasks, you must not forget about your equipment in the process. Your harvesting machines are some of the most important parts of your farming business, and they need their own level of care to survive the cold months ahead. Use our tips for storing your harvesting equipment over winter and ensuring peak performance come spring.
Inspect and Clean Before Storing
First, you want to ensure you inspect and clean your machines before storing them away. Harvesters process large quantities of crops and other plants at one time, making them likely to gather residue buildups on their inner components. If you leave these to sit and rot, they can corrode your machine’s metal and lead to a malfunction once winter has passed. Inspections will also help you identify any broken or worn-down parts that may need replacing.
Replace Worn-Down Components
Should you notice some wear and tear along your harvester’s parts, it’s also vital that you take the time to replace them. Your equipment puts in a lot of work throughout the year, and it’s perfectly normal to get replacement parts every so often. In particular, the tracks on vehicles like skid steers can benefit from this action, as there are plenty of high-quality rubber tracks on the market. The same goes for tires for other farm vehicles.
Remove Your Equipment Batteries
Another crucial part of learning how to store equipment for the winter is to remember to take out batteries beforehand. Much like car batteries, heavy equipment batteries rely on an internal charge to kickstart the machines’ engines. However, exposure to extremely cold conditions can drain this charge and, in severe cases, cause a discharge or fluid leakage. Because of this, you should remove your harvester’s batteries and store them in a separate location during the winter.
Pick the Right Storage Location
One of the most vital tips for storing your harvesting equipment over winter, though, is to choose the right type of storage place. Since the moisture from snow can cause premature corrosion and rust, you’ll want to place these devices inside of an enclosed shed or barn. Covering them with tarps can help provide additional protection during especially harsh storms.
The correct storage practices can make all the difference for your farming equipment. So use these tricks to have the most impact.