If a hydraulic pump is the heart of a hydraulic system, hydraulic hoses are the veins, carrying fluid power to every part of the system. Without strong, reliable hoses, it is simply not possible to enjoy trouble-free, efficient operation from your system. If you have been experiencing frequent hose failures, consider these 5 ideas for improving the service life of your hydraulic hoses.
First of all, naturally you need to make sure that the hoses you have installed in your system are capable of withstanding the actual—not just the advertised—temperature, pressure, and flow requirements of that system. For example, if you have installed a hose with a temperature and pressure rating that should be perfectly adequate for your system, yet it continues to fail, the problem may be that your system is actually running hotter than you think or that pressure surges are occurring that you have not planned for.
One of the top causes of premature hose failure is improper routing or securing of hoses. It is essential to configure your equipment in such a way that hoses do not exceed their bend radius, vibrate excessively, or come into contact with degrading chemicals. It is also very important to make sure your hoses are properly secured to your hydraulic parts with high-quality fittings. If your hoses have been failing prematurely, it would certainly be worthwhile to investigate what kinds of unnecessary stresses your system may be placing on them along with the possibility of relieving these stresses with new hose configurations, better support clamps, and higher-quality fittings.
If your hoses cannot be moved away from stressful situations, such as exposure to a corrosive chemical or contact with a metal surface that can cause wear and tear by abrasion, the next best thing is to protect your hoses with hose sleeves or hose wraps. This allows the sleeve or wrap to take the damage instead of your hose. You will have to inspect frequently to make sure you change out these protectors before they become worn through.
As an alternative to hose protectors, you might consider upgrading to a higher-quality hose that has improved abrasion resistance, heat resistance, chemical resistance, etc. built right into the hose itself. Parker hydraulic hoses are an excellent choice—this brand offers a line of hoses with superior abrasion resistance that can withstand up to 450 times more abrasion than other similar hoses.
One final suggestion for improving your hydraulic hose life is to get hose analysis from the experts at Bernell Hydraulics. This will save you from the waste and frustration of playing a guessing game as to which of the above strategies to employ to improve your hose performance. We have an excellent selection of hydraulic hoses in stock and we can even cut and crimp them for you right in our shop for maximum convenience.