Whether you're storing equipment for a season or just for a few months while you're not using it, there are several important measures you should take to prevent damage. Follow these six steps for properly storing construction equipment.
1. Prepare your storage area
To ensure they are well protected, it's best to store your heavy equipment in a fully enclosed structure, like a garage, barn, or warehouse. The space should be insulated, clean, dry, and free of any pests and animals. It's also a good idea to use a protective floor mat, so that your tracked construction equipment don't damage the flooring.
Even when storing in an enclosed space, the equipment should be covered with a high quality tarp that will help keep moisture from accumulating and causing rust.
2. Clean and grease your construction equipment
You don't want to pull your equipment out of storage in a few months and have it covered in dirt and grime. Give your interior and exterior a deep clean before storing. Wash dirt and debris from moving parts, then add lubricant, so they're ready to go when you power up the engine again. Check your owner's manual for more specific instructions on lubricating your equipment's moving parts.
3. Fill up your fuel and oil tanks
Topping off fuel and oil will help prevent condensation forming in your tanks which could lead to costly problems down the road. It's also a good idea to add fuel stabilizer to your fuel tank, so the fuel doesn't degrade over time.
4. Check tire pressure
When storing construction equipment, it's important to inspect your tires for any signs of damage or leaks. Refer to your owner's manual for the correct tire pressure, but keep in mind that it might be a good idea to slightly over inflate the tires during storage to prevent flat spots from forming, especially if the equipment will be sitting on concrete.
5. Handle any repairs before storage
Always complete repairs and maintenance before storing your construction equipment. Minor issues can worsen and become major problems after you let your equipment sit for months unattended. By having them inspected, then completing any service before storage, you can avoid costly repair bills down the road.
6. Secure your equipment
Equipment theft can occur if you don't take the proper precautions. It's important to lock up your equipment, plus lock your storage space, and invest in theft prevention devices like surveillance cameras, alarms, and telematics systems.