How to Repair Excavators

Excavators remove large amounts of the ground for construction purposes.
Repair excavators on site to continue construction work.Repair excavators on site to continue construction work.
Routine maintenance can identify and prevent most problems, such as checking the oil filter or battery cables. But sometimes emergency repairs are needed to get the machine working again, such as when the rubber track slips off the wheels or begins to tear.

Step 1

Locate the track tension device and access plate on your excavator. Each excavator has a chassis system located in a different place based on its type and model.

Step 2

Raise the excavator from the ground at least 6 inches using hydaulic jacks. Place the crane and bucket against the ground to keep the machine steady as you slide blocks underneath. Ensure the entire excavator is stable on the blocks and jacks before making repairs.

Step 3

Remove the tension cover plate from the track frame if your excavator has one. Place the socket wrench against the grease zerk and slowly remove. Insert the Allen wrench into the hole and push on the check ball inside. Press a foot against the rubber track to loosen the tension and retract the tension/idler wheel.

Step 4

Pull off the rubber track. Place the new track over the drive wheel sprocket with the metal links fitting into the sprocket teeth. Slide the rubber track over the tension/idler wheel with the use of the pry bar. Push the bottom of the track with your foot until the metal links straddle the wheel.

Step 5

Reinsert the grease zirk into the track tension frame. Pump grease into the zirk with a grease gun. Stop applying grease when the track frame sags 3 inches.

Step 6

Start the excavator and place the engine on idle. Rotate the track in both directions for several turns with the control lever for the rubber track. Turn off the engine and check the sag. Continue to rotate the track if the sag is more than 3 inches.

Step 7

Secure the tension cover plate when the track sag remains at 3 inches. Take out the blocks and lower the hydraulic jacks until the excavator is on the ground.

Things You Will Need

  • Hydraulic jacks
  • Blocks
  • Socket wrench
  • Allen wrench, 3/32 inch
  • Pry bar
  • Grease gun

About the Author

Based in southwestern Pennsylvania, Michelle Hickman has written since 2006 on an array of topics including lifestyle, writing instruction and financial services. Her first articles appeared in "The Pittsburgh Tribune Review: Focus Magazine." She holds a certification in computer and information science from Central Westmoreland Career and Technology Center.