Extend the life and value of your machinery with a winter service - Fruit & Vine

Extend the life and value of your machinery with a winter service

With the harvest season drawing to a close, it’s crucial to start thinking about booking a winter service for your tractors and implements. NP Seymour has provided the following advice.

Servicing at regular intervals will reduce the risk of unexpected breakdowns, keep the cost of expensive emergency repairs down in the future, and help you avoid unnecessary downtime during the peak growing season.

Regular maintenance will also ensure that your machinery operates at peak efficiency throughout its life, and well-maintained equipment always retains more value, helping you to extend the life span of your investment and maximise resale values too.

Why post-harvest is the optimal time for a winter service

Post-harvest, your machinery usage is generally lower, which means that downtime is minimal and servicing won’t interrupt your schedule as much as it would through spring and summer.

If you’ve had a busy season then a winter service will allow for early detection of any issues. Wear and tear or damage incurred over the year can be addressed and fixed before they turn into bigger, more costly problems.

It also means that you’re ready to get started in 2024 straight away and it’s the perfect opportunity to get your equipment ready for the winter months.

Preparing your tractor and machinery for winter

As the temperatures start to drop, it’s essential to prepare your tractor and machinery, particularly sprayers, for the harsher winter conditions.

Antifreeze is a must. Ensure that your engine’s cooling system is flushed and filled with fresh antifreeze to prevent the engine from freezing, which can lead to costly damages.

Cold weather can be harsh on batteries too. A service will ensure that your tractor’s battery is in good health, preventing starting issues on cold mornings. This will include checking the tyre pressures and tread depth, which are critical for safe and efficient operation, especially in wet or icy conditions.

Proper lubrication of all moving parts will prevent seizing and corrosion during the damp winter months and cleaning will prevent debris and dirt from causing rust.

National Sprayer Testing Scheme (NSTS) tests

Another great job to get ticked off the list at this time of year is your annual sprayer test. NP Seymour is an official National Sprayer Testing Scheme (NSTS) registered centre and its team of qualified NSTS examiners can also carry out a pre-test sprayer service to ensure your sprayer will pass.

Both the service and the test are incredibly comprehensive. Designed to cover all application components of the sprayer, the company looks at the control systems, hoses and pipework, nozzles and nozzle control systems, filters and more to ensure the sprayer is working correctly, efficiently, and safely.

The NSTS is the legally recognised standard for testing sprayers in the UK. It is essential to ensure your sprayers comply with the latest legislation and are working efficiently to effectively distribute pesticides, herbicides, and fertilisers.

Servicing your vineyard tractors and machinery annually, especially post-harvest, is not just about preventative maintenance, but it’s also an investment in your farm’s productivity and profitability.

By preparing your equipment for winter and ensuring compliance with the NSTS, you are setting the stage for a successful year ahead.

Find out more from NP Seymour here.

Read more machinery news here

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