Protecting your agricultural engine: essential tips and tricks


Perkins engines are robust and reliable, but they do benefit from regular care and attention. Here’s how to ensure your engine is in tip-top condition, every time you need it to perform.

Agricultural machines, such as harvesters, fruit and nut picking machines, or tractors with a specific role, tend to be used for a short period of intense activity, and then stored away until the next year.

It is common practice to service and check over your machine and engine before that season’s activity.

What to do, and what to look out for

Long periods of non-use can lead to issues such as belts and other rubber parts drying out or perishing, which can result in leaks. So it’s important to check over the whole engine for signs of damp or fluid loss.

Protecting your engine

Carefully check wiring and pipework for signs of damage, ensure all your guards are in place, ensure your brakes are operating correctly and hydraulic hoses are in good condition.

Engine oil will drain downwards during long periods of storage, reducing the lubrication film on the top end of your engine. So, during start-up, ensure your engine reaches operating temperature and that oil has circulated before you put any load on it.

When your machine is being used for intense activities, make it part of your routine to check over your engine carefully, every day.

Putting your machines away

Before your equipment is stored for next year, carry out a thorough clean and lubrication.

Diesel fuel should not be drained for storage, because keeping the tank full can minimise condensation and oxidation on metal tank walls.

Look for signs of debris around the oil and coolant filler caps, which could require a full coolant flush. It can also be a sign that oil and coolant are mixing due to cylinder head gasket failure.

Remember to turn your engine over every month, during storage, to prevent seizures and to keep the battery charged.

And finally…

If you’re in tune with your engine, it will generally give you advance warning if something isn’t right. Your local distributor is available to help with technical analysis inspections and any required maintenance to keep your engine in prime condition.