You may have heard of hydraulic systems, but do you know what they are? They are used in all sorts of applications, ranging from industrial machinery and construction equipment to aircraft and cars. But what are they?
What does hydraulic mean?
The word “hydraulic” derives from the Greek term “hydraulikos,” which translates to “water-working.” In the early 17th century, it referred to water-based systems such as water wheels. Today, it is commonly used to describe systems that use pressurised fluids for energy transmission and work performance, like those found in machinery and vehicles.
What are hydraulic systems?
These powerful systems are a type of power transmission used to transport energy from one place to another.
What are hydraulic systems used for?
Hydraulic systems are used everywhere! Providing power transmission (transferring energy from one place to another) in industrial machinery, such as excavators and forklifts – hydraulic systems can even be found on aircraft and vehicles, powering brakes, steering, and more.
What are the main components of hydraulic systems?
Hydraulic Actuator / Cylinder / Rams
Actuators, or cylinders, are responsible for converting the fluid pressure into mechanical motion, which makes the system move. They are like the muscles of the hydraulic system, and different types can be used depending on the application. These mechanisms use the pressurised fluid to create movement, allowing the system to perform its intended function. Whether it's lifting heavy loads or powering machines, actuators are a crucial part of hydraulic systems.
Hydraulic Control Valves
Control valves are essential for regulating the flow of fluids in hydraulic systems. This helps maintain the correct pressure across the entire system, as well as control the speed and direction of motion of the actuator. Without control valves, fluid would flood out uncontrollably, making it impossible to get any meaningful results. Thanks to these valves, hydraulic systems can be operated with great efficiency and accuracy.
A hydraulic power pack is a device that makes hydraulic systems work. It has three main parts that work together to make the system move: Generally, a motor, a pump, and a tank.
The motor provides the power to run the pump. The pump then takes fluid from the tank and pressurises it. This pressurised fluid then travels through hoses and valves to the cylinders and motors, which use the fluid to move in different ways.
One of the key components of a hydraulic system is the pump. The pump is responsible for pressurising the fluid and moving it through the system. There are several types of pumps, including gear pumps, vane pumps, and piston pumps.
Hydraulic Systems Maintenance
Hydraulic systems maintenance is an important aspect of ensuring that the system operates efficiently and effectively. Regular maintenance can help to prolong the life of the system and prevent costly breakdowns. Some of the key maintenance tasks include:
- Keeping the fluid clean and at the correct level
- Inspecting the components
- Preventing leaks
- Replacing worn-out parts
- Regularly monitoring the system
- Scheduling regular inspections
By performing regular maintenance and addressing any issues promptly, you can help to ensure that your hydraulic system is operating at peak performance and minimise the risk of costly breakdowns.
From construction equipment and industrial machinery to aircraft and automobiles, hydraulic systems are used in a wide range of applications. Understanding the basic principles and components of these systems, as well as the common applications and maintenance considerations, can help ensure that your hydraulic system is operating efficiently and effectively.
So, if you’re in need of hydraulic services such as hydraulic repairs or hydraulic design and build, don’t hesitate to contact Hydraulic and Engineering Services. Our team is dedicated to providing high-quality service and ensuring that your hydraulic systems are operating at peak performance.