How Do You Inspect a Used Skid Steer?


Quick Answer

To inspect a used skid steer, ask for the equipment history, inspect the outside of the machine, examine the interior, and sit in the operator’s seat. A used skid steer that is in good condition is a good option for a landscaper adding to his feet, homeowner with acreage and second owner possibilities.

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Full Answer

Questions to ask about the history of a used skid steer include how long the owner had it, where he bought it and whether he bought it used or new. Ask about maintenance practices and history and how the machine is used.

Examine the exterior of the machine, and look for obvious signs of damage. Check for leaking or damaged cylinders, dented frame and welds or cracks. Although dents are common with used machines, excessive denting may be an indication of abuse. Look for parts such as teeth or cutting edge that need replacing and ask about attachments being sold with the machine.

Carefully inspect the inside of the machine for all fluid levels. Check that the hydraulic oil is transparent to indicate that it has been changed and that there is no water in the engine oil. Another indication of a well-maintained machine is a clean air filter. Check the hoses and tires for dry rot for a machine that has not been in use for a long time.

Lastly, sit in the operators sit, and start the engine. Listen for abnormal engine clatter which might indicate a damaged radiator. Pull out the dipstick, and feel for excessive pressure. Operate the loader arms to ensure that they work properly. Drive forward and back to test the drives, and operate the controls back and forward, left and right to check the response of the controls.

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