Keeping the Hydraulics On Your Dump Trailer in Great Shape

September 20, 2019 by

Keeping the Hydraulics On Your Dump Trailer in Great Shape

A dump trailer may seem like a relatively simple piece of equipment, but it does have a number of moving parts and keeping everything in good working order is important. Good, regular maintenance will pay off in the long run and increase the longevity of your trailer. The hydraulic system is a central component on a dump trailer and when your hydraulic equipment is well maintained, it operates at a higher level of efficiency, generates less heat and will ultimately last a whole lot longer.


The hydraulic system is crucial for the proper functioning of your dump trailer and without the right hydraulic pump, your trailer will not be able to do the job you need it to. The hydraulic pump is the component that produces the flow that allows the hydraulics to operate effectively. The rate of flow from the hydraulic pump determines the operating speed of the hydraulic system. An undersized pump might get the job done, but it will be slow and frustrating. This, however, does not mean that bigger is always better and an oversized pump could work too fast and be dangerous to operate. An oversized pump could also lead to overheating and reduce the life span of all the components of the hydraulic system. It is important to choose the right size hydraulic pump for the specifications of your dump trailer and the work that you do.


The force generated within the hydraulic system is determined by the operating pressure. This means it is important to ensure that the hydraulic system on your dump trailer is always operating within the manufacturer’s specifications. The hydraulic pump you choose must be compatible with the hydraulic system on your dump trailer and be able to work effectively under the systems operating pressure. In order to prevent twisted pump shafts and unnecessary gear housing cut-outs, you need to ensure that your hydraulic pump is up to spec and well maintained.

You need to know the duty cycle of your hydraulic equipment. The longer the duty cycle, the higher the temperatures produced by the system and you need to have the correct reservoir capacity to dissipate the heat effectively. If you have a longer duty cycle, you need a larger reservoir. You also need to consider the reservoir material, aluminum tanks are more effective than steel or polyethylene when it comes to dissipating heat.

Hose size specifications and routing also need to be carefully considered and the hose diameters must be based on system flow. If your inlet hoses are undersized it can cause damage to your pump as pressure builds up in the system and the heat increases. This will shorten the lifespan of your hydraulic equipment. Steel hydraulic tubing is often preferable to hydraulic hoses because it reduces friction and dissipates heat for effectively. When placing hydraulic hoses, it is important to minimise the use of fittings and keep the hoses as straight as possible.

Oil is another important consideration of your hydraulic system and your choice of oil can significantly increase the life of all your hydraulic components. You should always follow the manufacturer’s specifications and use the oil that is recommended for your climate and operating conditions. You also need to clean the reservoirs and replace your oil and filters at appropriate intervals. If you use the correct oil and keep it clean, you can potentially reduce two of the common causes of hydraulic pump failure; contamination and overheating.

Your dump trailer works hard for you and it is important to ensure that all the components are well maintained and in good working order. At McFarlane’s our technicians can help you keep your dump trailer on the road for many years.