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Common Causes of Premature Track Failure

To help ensure that you are getting the most out of your rubber tracks, keep these common reasons why a track can prematurely fail. These tips can help you avoid costly wear and tear on your machine and avoid downtime. If you have any questions about your specific machine, refer to your operator’s manual or contact your local machinery dealer.

1. High-Speed Roading: Roading your track machine at speeds over 17MPH, especially on asphalt, causes excessive heat buildup. This heat will cause damage to the tracks and can result in premature failure. New tracks should be transported on a trailer until the break in period has been completed. If roading cannot be avoided, users should monitor track heat and use dry lubricants to help dissipate heat every 30 minutes.

2. Improper Tension and/or Damaged Undercarriage Components: Loose or worn undercarriage components can cause alignment and tension issues with your new tracks. Maintaining proper tension and alignment allows the undercarriage components to run as designed and decreases drive lug wear.

3. Pay Attention to Your Drive Lugs: One of the most common reasons for track replacement is drive lug failure. Damage to drive lugs commonly occurs because of mechanical issues, side loading, and over-torquing. The drive lugs can show the first indications of misalignment. Make sure your undercarriage is free and clear of any debris that may have accumulated. Avoid side loading by turning your machine slowly, especially on declines and sidehills. Alternating turns and work direction can equalize drive lug wear.

4. Spinning the Tracks: Spinning your tracks in the field can cause unnecessary stress to the drive lugs. In especially wet and sticky conditions, spinning the tracks can cause a build-up of mud and field debris in the undercarriage which can cause over-tensioning of the track.

5. Improper Ballast: Check your owner’s manual for ballasting weights, taking care to avoid exceeding the weight limits. Weight distribution, especially on quad tracked machines, is important for the overall performance of the machine and implements. *NOTE* Machines correctly ballasted for field conditions MAY NOT be ballasted for road operation. The excessive weight will cause more damaging heat build-up.

Global Track Warehouse USA, Inc.

31W300 West Bartlett Road

Bartlett, IL 60103

Phone: 847-488-0988


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