Motor graders are sophisticated machines equipped to handle tough conditions, but they need to be operated properly and optimally. Beginner users, and even experienced operators, should take note of the proper procedures for operating them.
To begin, how should you start and shut down the machine? Here’s a basic guide.
Starting up your motor grader
Make sure all your pre-start procedures have been followed. These include checking for any defects or potential problems while you grease the machine. Do any parts seem worn or broken? Are there any leaks? Check the fuel, coolant and oil levels; the power-steering reservoir and power-shift transmissions. Make sure you’ve done all the checks suggested in the Operator’s manual. Then you’re ready to start.
In neutral and with the parking brake on, open the throttle to a quarter and turn the starter. Depress the clutch to ease the starter load, and don’t press on the starter for more than 30 seconds. If you do, you may need to wait a couple minutes before using the starter again.
Once the motor has started, idle for a few minutes as you check the gauges. Are all of them operating? Then check the controls, giving the hydraulic oil some time to warm up.
Shutting down the motor grader
When it comes time to shut down the machine, give it a few minutes to cool down. Two to three minutes should do it. Make sure you park the machine as near to level as possible, lower all hydraulic equipment to the ground and set the parking brake.
Once the machine is off, walk around the machine looking for any leaks (such as leaks in the hydraulic system hose or connections; fuel, coolant, grease or oil leaks) or loose, worn parts.
Finally, use the following checklist as part of your post-shutdown quality check:
- check for blade wear and tear (they should be wearing straight, not cupped in the middle)
- check the levels of the oil, coolant, fuel
- check for any dirt or mix that should be cleaned to prevent hindrances to the sliding surface, lubrication point or pivot setting.
For information about the range of refurbished Caterpillar 140G, 140H and 140K motor graders available from KH Plant, contact us online or call one of our representatives on +27 83 274 4882.