Safety when it comes to Hydraulic Tools

  • Date:03 Oct 2016

When working with pressure of 700 bar to 1500 bar, which are extremely high pressure, it is incredibly important to take extra precaution and follow the proper safety precautions when dealing with hydraulic equipment. If something goes wrong, it can damage the tool, job and the person working around them. Following the proper safety precautions not only prevents avoidable accidents, but also prolongs the life of the equipment. Royal Technic is happy to provide you with this list of safety tips so you (and your equipment) stay happy and healthy.

While it’s important to note that this list is not a complete list, it includes the fundamentals so you can get a much better grasp of different procedures involved. If you’d like a more comprehensive discussion regarding hydraulic tool safety, we’re just one phone call away – 03 9972 3889.

General safety at a job site

  • Use protective clothing and personal protective equipment
  • Follow all site safety protocols

Choose the right tool for the job

  • Always choose a tool that is able to easily exceed the requirements of the job. For example, when you need to lift a 10-tonne load, use a 20-tonne cylinder to be on the safer side
  • Do not improvise with the tool, use it only for its intended purpose

Read the instruction manual

  • Each tool is different, and comes with its own set of instructions. No matter how familiar you are with the tool, the instruction manual should be always read and followed

Inspect the tool before starting the job

  • Make sure everything is connected securely and as instructed in the user manual
  • Ensure any additional connections hooked up to the system are genuine and rated for working pressure equivalent or higher than the pump’s maximum output pressure.  
  • Check that there are no obvious oil leaks in the system before starting the job
  • Make sure nothing looks damaged or off place
  • Do a sample run with the tool and check again for any oil leaks
  • Make sure the pump has enough oil. If not, refill the correct grade oil in the pump

Take care of the tool by handling and storing it properly

  • Don’t handle it by the hose
  • Never drop the tool
  • Do not let the hose get bent, scratched or damaged in any way
  • Once the job is completed, check again for any damages or leaks
  • Retract the tool / equipment / cylinder completely and make sure all the oil is returned back to pump
  • Remove all the fittings from the hydraulic system and store it in a clean environment

Perform periodic calibration on the tool

  • Make sure you’re using a pressure gauge to monitor the pressure in the system
  • Usually, the pressure gauge needs to be regularly calibrated according to the customers’ needs – industry standard practice is once a year for minimum to average usage of the tool, and more often for high usage or in critical applications.
  • In some critical cases, the tool itself may be tested or calibrated along with the pressure gauge

General things to watch out for

  • Damaged hoses (stop immediately)
  • Oil leaks anywhere in the system (stop immediately)
  • Beware of pinch points in tools such as torque wrenches, flange spreaders, cable crimpers, cable cutters, etc.
  • Never go under a lifted load when it is supported solely by a hydraulic force
  • In jobs that require high pressure such as hydrotesting or bolt tensioning, it is advisable to clear off a section of the work area to minimise risk
  • When in doubt, stop the work and contact us directly. We should be able to provide general safety advice for you

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