If you want to keep your business up and running and your crane operating efficiently and safely, then you need to keep a close eye on repairs and maintenance. Here we’ll take a look at five of the most common signs that repairs are needed or imminent. By tackling these issues promptly, you can avoid accidents and higher costs in the future.
Warped or cracked hooks
Hooks are designed to bear the brunt of the load in everyday operation. They endure enormous stresses and this can lead to two main problems, bending and cracking.
Bent hooks are a problem because they are designed to handle a lot of weight on a very small area. If the hook warps out of its original shape, this will lead to unexpected forces being applied and could cause an equipment failure.
The regular loading and unloading applied to a hook can cause stress fractures. These fractures can spread through the hook during a lifting operation, and may lead to the hook breaking clean through. Hooks should be regularly inspected for such damage.
Rust always begins in small spots, and so may not demand immediate attention. However, if left untreated, it can turn into a serious and expensive problem to fix. The metal and paints used to construct cranes is designed to be resistant to corrosion, but due to constant weather exposure, if can still lead to electrical shorting or loss of structural strength in the crane.
Damaged ropes and slings
Ropes and slings are subjected both to enormous stresses from loading and unloading, and to constant temperature variations from the weather. This continued stress and moving from cold to hot and back will cause the rubber to become dry and brittle over time. If your equipment is under a very heavy workload, then rubber parts like ropes and slings require frequent oiling to prevent damage. If the rubber ropes and slings starts to become inflexible, or if there are visible cracks and splitting, then they will certainly require immediate maintenance or repair.
A chain which has completely broken is easy to spot, and will usually be fixed quite easily in order for work to continue. However, links which have been crushed or weakened are much more difficult to notice. It is relatively easy for a chain to be damaged during normal operations. A single crushed link can quickly lead to a broken or snapped chain, with unfortunate consequences. Careful and regular inspections are required to make sure no weak links are present.
Every crane is maintained and repaired over time, and individual parts may be gradually replaced. It is possible that the load ratings of some these parts may be slightly different to the originals. If the load capacity of the crane is not matched among all the components, it could lead to an accidental overloading. Careful testing and monitoring of load capacities is necessary to avoid accidents.
By paying careful attention to these directions on how to tell if your crane needs repair, you can ensure the safe, orderly and cost-effective operation of your equipment.