All famers know that just because the harvest is finished doesn’t mean that the work is complete. A little preparation goes a long way come spring. Use the acronym FARMS to remember these vital 5 winterization steps:
Fill Tanks – Topping off fuel and hydraulic oil tanks prevent condensation from forming as the temperature changes with the seasons. If you are planning to keep using your equipment throughout the winter, be sure to take steps to prevent the diesel fuel from gelling such as adding cold flow improvers.
Adequately Lubricate Metal – Any metal that is not painted needs to be greased to prevent damage from the elements like rust, which can diminish both the quality and value of the equipment. Refer to your user manual for more information about how to properly lubricate.
Repair Damage – Fixing broken or damaged parts now will protect the equipment from rusting or degrading over the winter. Be sure to check for worn or loose belts and leaks in addition to damaged parts. This will ensure that come springtime, you can get to work faster.
Maintain and Clean – Use a high-pressure washer to clean out dirt and debris from equipment before storing it for the season. Be cautious when cleaning seals and bearings. It is a good idea to remove the batteries and store them in a dry location.
Store Equipment – If possible, store equipment inside to avoid the worst of the winter elements. When storing equipment outdoors, cover it with material that is both water-resistant and protects delicate electronics from too much sun.
Always remember to consult your equipment’s user manual for the best way to winterize and care for your specific product. Equipment is a large investment for most farmers. Taking good care of it will ensure that it will serve you for several future growing seasons.
Madison Mutual is dedicated to protecting you and your farm this upcoming winter and always. Read more about our Farmowner Coverage here.