How to Repair Hydraulic Cylinders

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Mary's Heavy Construction Equipment Blog

Welcome to my corner of the internet. My name is Mary, and this blog is going to be focused around heavy construction equipment. Years ago, my husband and I ran a construction company together. Now we're semi-retired, and for the last ten years, we have been doing a bit of freelance work. I miss the big machines, and I decided to start a blog about it. If you work with heavy construction equipment on a regular basis, I plan to have tips and ideas in this blog that are designed to help you. I invite you to grab a cup of tea, get comfortable and explore these posts. Thanks for reading!


How to Repair Hydraulic Cylinders

3 August 2016
 Categories: , Blog

Hydraulic cylinders are used in many machines for power steering and lifting. You will find them in many modern tractors, combines, and cultivation equipment. When your hydraulic cylinder needs repairs, you can do this yourself as the procedure is not strenuous.


In the beginning, you will need to purchase a repair kit that is specific for your hydraulic cylinder. The parts' number should be stamped somewhere on the outside of the cylinder. Ordering the parts online is fine as long as you have that number which you can match. Well-known brands may be kept in stock in local stores. Before you begin, you should have the new parts, the broken cylinder, and a printout with a diagram of the cylinder, which can help you if you begin to get confused.


For this part of the process, you will need a gland removal tool. You can either weld this yourself or buy one, depending on your comfort level with doing so. First, you need to remove all hydraulic lines attached and allow any built-up pressure to be released. Remove the gland using a wrench or a specific gland remover tool. You may need to slightly tap or bump the gland with a hammer to loosen it.  After that, you should be able to easily slide out the piston rod. You may need to support the cylinder while removing this piece. You can use a winch to do so, but having one is not necessary. Remember, a diagram of the cylinder's parts will help you not become lost. Put the piston rod on a tarp or a clean area. Do not allow it to touch dirt or other metal or you will need to pay for a replacement of this as well. When the piston rod is liberated, put the rod end back where it was and unscrew the rest of the screws holding it in place.


Once the cylinder is disassembled, the repair kit should give extensive directions on how to correctly install your new parts. Remember these tips. Be very careful with the seals and take your time to correctly align the seal with the parts around it. If you do not, you will have problems later on. Install the o-rings one at a time so that you do not become confused with placement. Clean the grooves where the o-rings will be situated as necessary. Make sure you apply sufficient oil on each part and test for leaks around each seal as you put it in. Following these tips should help you successfully complete your hydraulic equipment repairs.