The end of the paving season marks the beginning of winter maintenance and preparation for the 2024 season. Now is the time for crucial equipment maintenance so you can prevent future downtime during the season next year. Here is a starting point on preventative maintenance you can use on your paving equipment this winter.
For information on end-of-season asphalt plant maintenance, click here.
If you’re reading this article, you know this better than anyone: asphalt paving machines are a huge investment that is critical to the success of your company. Your paver is the crux of your job. If it’s not operational, there’s no need for any trucks, for an asphalt plant, for any rollers or any other pieces of equipment. It is the single most important piece of equipment on a job site so we have to do our best to prevent downtime and breakages.
Not only will preventative maintenance prevent you from losing out on thousands because you have to shut your project down, but it will help extend the life of your equipment and get the most out of the investment you put into it.
The Off-Season Checklist
Preventative maintenance starts as soon as your crew goes home for the season. It’s crucial to identify problems before they happen and this off-season checklist can help you do just that:
Thoroughly clean your paver with an asphalt remover like PavePro Gold.
PavePro Gold is especially important to be used in end-of-season cleanup because it is the most powerful, yet gentle asphalt remover on the market. Its heavy-duty formula is perfect for cleaning up those tough-to-clean asphalt build-up spots and tar on your paver without harming your paint, wiring harnesses, decals, hoses, or any other sensitive spots on the paver. Make sure to remove all covers and guards to reach the spots you can’t reach without taking things apart.
Flush and change your fluids.
We’re talking everything: from hydraulic and coolant systems to gearboxes and everything in between. You’d be surprised how often this is neglected and pushed off.
You should also change the asphalt paver’s engine oil and filter, fuel filter and separator, and hydraulic filter.
Inspect the paver for wear and tear.
This step is important to do after cleaning everything with an asphalt remover to ensure that you can see minor issues like wear patterns and loose nuts and bolts that could lead to potential disasters during the season.
Ensure that you inspect the entire paver, including the machine frame, conveyor, screed, auger, drive chains, and tracks. You should also clean and look at the engine and hydraulic coolers which often get dirty and cause overheating.
When it comes to asphalt pavers, it’s best to follow the age-old saying, “When in doubt, change it out.” You’ll thank us later when you replace that sketchy part that might make it through the season and you don’t end up out of service for a few days… or weeks.
Reach Out To Dealers, Vendors, and Partners
The best time to work with and build a relationship with dealers, vendors, and partners is during the off-season when things are “slower.” While things never actually slow down completely, the off-season will offer you a little more time to talk with and work with the companies and individuals who are there to help you out, when things aren’t an emergency like they are during the season.
Work with your local dealer to complete inspections and take advantage of off-season discounts on your equipment and replacement parts. You can also get refresher courses and training on maintenance and best practices.
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Keeping A Clean Machine
There’s no question that a clean machine ensures a successful pave, but oftentimes people don’t know the best way to keep their equipment free of asphalt buildup.
Prevent Build Up Throughout the Day.
Using PavePro Green as an asphalt release agent is the best way to prevent build-up. Not only do you need less product than you would with something like diesel fuel, but PavePro prevents build-up for up to three times longer than diesel fuel can–a little bit goes a long way.
You can spray PavePro Green everywhere asphalt touches to prevent build-up: asphalt truck beds, paver hoppers and augers, hand tools, and more.
Clean Up Hardened Asphalt and Tack
Using PavePro Gold as an asphalt remover is the ideal way to ensure that you get your paver as clean as possible without damaging your paver or risking your crew’s safety.
PavePro Gold is a heavy-duty asphalt remover unlike any other. It can tackle inches of asphalt buildup, tack over spray, and even asphalt-based seal coat.
We recommend that you use Gold every day at the end of the shift or before you take your equipment into the shop for repairs
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