Hot maintenance tips for critical mine equipment (part 1)

It's time to get a little technical with some hot tips on how to keep some of your most critical equipment running smoothly and efficiently.

Over the years, our field engineers have seen every equipment challenge under the sun, and we’ve racked up a lot of best practices that have helped mines across North America achieve their maintenance and productivity goals, from pit to plant.

Tip 1:  Mobile Equipment Engines

The engine is the heart of any piece of mobile equipment. Given that most mines are in remote locations where extreme weather is common, combined with the harsh operating conditions with rough terrane to navigate, these engines are often working to the max.

Hard working engines need a hard-working engine oil! To keep this equipment moving, you want to use an advanced diesel engine oil that can properly protect equipment in any operating environment. Wider viscosity range engine oils, such as a 5W-40 formulation, offer greater protection in both cold temperature conditions, and also provide increased protection at high operating temperatures. Wide viscosity range engine oils are well suited to maintain their viscosity to protect heavily loaded engines - such as when your haul trucks are traveling loaded out of the pit, or a dozer working to clear hard terrane.

Besides engine protection, advanced diesel engine oils are more robust against oxidation, more capable of handling soot and reduce engine wear. These are all important factors to help you optimize your preventative maintenance (PM) intervals. With engine oil drains being one of the primary triggers for scheduling PM intervals, having the ability to extend drains can help to increase equipment availability, decrease downtime – all leading to improved savings on your operating costs.

A final factor to consider is that some engine oils are also capable to deliver fuel-efficiency benefits, through reducing friction in your engines. Considering fuel is one of the major operating costs for any mine, a small percentage saving can add up quickly to help you save on a major cost.