Any hydraulic system relies on having quality hoses to continue working effectively. That means selecting the right one could make the difference between operating an effective system or dealing with defects and potential damage.
When looking at hydraulic hoses, they appear relatively simple and possibly even interchangeable. However, hoses are actually multi-layered, sophisticated tools designed and manufactured for specific applications. Figuring out which hose is right for your system depends on several key factors, including size, temperature, compatibility and choosing the right hose fitting connection.
If a hose is to function optimally, the inside diameter must accommodate the correct amount of hydraulic fluid, minimize pressure loss and avert heat generation or excessive turbulence, both of which can damage the hose. The “Dash Numbers” measuring system is the hydraulics industry standard used to indicate hose size and the proper accompanying couplings.
When looking for a hose, it will need to be able to accommodate two temperature areas — that of the hydraulic fluid and that of the environment in which the hose exists (ambient temperature). Hoses that cannot withstand both the minimum and maximum temperatures of the fluid, as well as those not designed to work near hot manifolds, are likely to fail.
Typically, replacement hoses should be duplicates of the original hoses. In some circumstances, however, using a different type of replacement hose might actually be desirable. This is especially true if the hose failed prematurely due to excessive abrasion, unusual mechanical loads, routing challenges, temperature fluctuation or some other environmental factor. With advancements in hose engineering, there may be a better hose available.
As you read in the first paragraph, typical hydraulic hoses consist of numerous tubes, including one inner, one outer and several reinforcement layers. Hose tubing must come in direct contact with the fluid it carries, so it is important to ensure that the inner tube is compatible with the system’s fluids in order to perform reliably. Furthermore, the threads and mechanical interfaces of ends and couplings need to be compatible with the hoses and other system components. If they’re not, leaks and other hose failures can occur.
The most important factor in choosing a replacement hydraulic hose is the system pressure. It is vital that you know your system’s precise working pressure — including pressure spikes — when choosing a hose to ensure it will function properly. Finding the correct hose tube and the right fittings will help you avoid future hydraulic hose failures, which may include leakage, cracking or whipping.
Delivery of hydraulic fluid is all about volume and velocity. Any replacement hose needs to be properly sized to efficiently and effectively transport hydraulic fluid. If for any reason the system has been altered, you need to determine the hose I.D. by consulting with an expert.
For more information about hydraulic hoses, or if you need assistance choosing the right hose fitting connection for your system, contact us today!