Wheel Loader Walk-Around Procedure

This information is presented as a general walk-around guide for a mid-size Cat Wheel Loader. Check with your machines specific operator manual for a detailed walk-around inspection list.

While often an unappealing task to most operators, the daily walk-around inspection of your wheel loader is one of the days most important tasks to ensure you are operating safely, the machine is running efficiently, and you are lowering the risk of any unscheduled and costly maintenance.

Get into the Checking Habit

Your wheel loader will usually undergo a huge amount of strain and punishment during the day as it shifts mountains of earth and rubble, so getting into the habit of also checking the machine at the end of the day will allow you to identify issues such as oil leaks or new physical damage, giving you the option to arrange for repairs overnight to minimise disruption to the next work day schedule.

As different operators may be using the machine each day, a walk-around inspection should be completed prior to starting the machine, and detailed records kept of any issues found or maintenance performed on the machine.

The Centre Articulation Area

  • Start your inspection at the bottom of the cab ladder
  • Find and check the transmission fluid level, often found to the left of the ladder
  • Review the centre articulation area looking for wear in the drive-line area
  • Still within the centre articulation area inspect the hoses and couplings to ensure they are in place, are tight and there are no leaks present

The Tyres

  • Move to the front left tyre and check for any foreign material, stones or cuts in both the tyre tread and the side walls
  • Review the wheel rim checking for cracks or loose parts, as well as any loose lug nuts
  • Check the tyre inflation pressure. You will require more pressure in the front tyres than the rear to account for the machine lifting heavy loads. Refer to the machines operator manual and tyre specifications for the correct pressure of your tyre
  • Move to the rear of the tyre and check there are no leaks from the axel sea
  • Move to the lift arms checking for loose or broken remote greasing tubes, lines, fittings or hose clamps
  • As you move around the rest of the machine, carry out the same checks on each of the remaining tyres.

The Wheel Loader Bucket

  • Now look at the bucket. Look at the cutting edge, if it is not square with the ground that could be an indication that a tyre may be under inflated.
  • Look for unusual wear patterns on the bucket cutting edge
  • Review the rest of the bucket looking for cracked welds, bends in the metal or loose or missing bolts

Linkage Area

  • Inspect the linkage area including the cylinder rod and ensure the tilt rod is not scratched
  • Check the right side of the centre articulation area looking for the same faults as on the left articulation area
  • Check the cab looking for broken glass

Wheel Loader Engine Area

  • Check the dust bowl or pre-cleaner
  • Before opening the rear hatch, check the engine enclosure screen to ensure it is not damaged or has foreign material attached to it
  • Open the right engine enclosure door
  • Take time to check the engine area looking for debris on both sides of the engine fire wall
  • Check to ensure there are no leaks on any of the parts
  • Find the engine oil dip stick and check its level with a clean white cloth. Confirm there is no fuel present on the cloth when you check the oil.
  • Check the level of the coolant gauge
  • Find the fuel & water separator, releasing any water that may have collected in the bowl
  • Check your engine and fuel filters to ensure there are no leaks
  • Open the left side and rear side enclosure doors
  • Inspect the fuel cooler; hydraulic oil cooler, the charge air cooler, and the hydraulic oil filter for any debris or leaks.
  • Check the V-belt for cracks and that it has the appropriate tension according to the operator manuals specifications
  • Look at the fins of the heat exchangers checking for broken or bent fins, and that they are clean.
  • Check the fan enclosure for leaks and broken fan blades
  • Check the fuel cap is securely fitted
  • Close all rear enclosure doors
  • Do a final check under the machine to confirm there are not other leaks that you may have missed.

Walk-Around Inspection Video

Source: Cat Products

Talk to Plantman Equipment for more information on the maintenance or repair of your Wheel Loader equipment.