When using an earthmoving vehicle, it is important to make sure that all systems and components are in good mechanical condition. However, it is also essential to check the tire conditions. A properly maintained tire contributes to extended wear life. Proper tire maintenance may also help prevent damage to other vehicle components. 

Typical earthmoving operations put tires under particular stress during operation: heavy loads are transported on bumpy roads and under severe conditions. That is why we at BKT always recommend correct tire maintenance – especially for equipment operating on mining, quarry and construction sites. Choosing the right tire, actually, is not enough. It must be maintained in the best possible way and used appropriately according to design standards to take advantage of its full potential

It is essential to make sure that the tire is always in excellent condition  to achieve top performance, maximize tire life and ensure best driving conditions to safeguard the operator – all that resulting in a good return on investment.

An essential element for proper tire performance is a correct inflation pressure. Overinflating leads to premature and irregular tread wear and hence a cost for the company. Underinflation, instead, may result in higher fuel consumption, difficult maneuvering and possible damage to the tire casing. 

Better safe than sorry

What we recommend to all our customers is that either themselves or the servicing dealer establish and follow a scheduled maintenance program. As the idiom says: better safe than sorry - and this also applies to earthmoving machinery: regular tire maintenance reduces vehicle downtime due to premature removal. This results in cost optimization for companies. 

Tire maintenance and monitoring generally includes:

  • Mounting new tires on EM machinery.
  • Monitoring the tire inflation pressure. Ideally once per week but at the very minimum every two weeks, the service technician comes to the company, checks the pressure of all tires to ensure best performance of both the tires and the equipment. The ideal inflation pressure is based on the load and speed in correlation to the kind of application, the type of load, short and frequent hauls or longer haul distances as well as the type of terrain (unpaved roads, muddy soil, asphalt, etc.). 
  • Tire performance analysis. At every check, the service technician records the pressure values on a service report. Over time, the amount of data increases, so that a graph can be drawn to examine trends and tire performance in terms of operating hours, state of wear and pressure levels. This report is very useful to the company for monitoring the state of their products and forecasting the intervals necessary for purchasing new tires.
  • Should any damage or leaking valves be noticed on any of the mounted tires during periodic scheduled inspections, the service technician takes the necessary steps by means of a prompt–intervention kit to solve the problem or replace the tire if necessary. 
  • Worn tire disposal. In some regions tires must be recycled according to local regulations. We recommend you follow the guidelines of your city, region and/or country.  

Scheduled maintenance is not always included in the purchase price of tires. Often, these are extra services the tire dealer offers at a charge. Anyway, we at BKT believe it is an excellent investment, as continuous monitoring increases performance and may extend tire life. Not to mention that possible damage can be avoided reducing costs to your company. 

Have you ever been part of a scheduled maintenance program? How do you take care of your OTR tires? Tell us your story!