When purchasing tractors from a salvage lot or second hand, it's important to look for an engine with the power to handle necessary tasks. Checking the power connections, such as the drawbar, power takeoff and hydraulic system, is a must for consumers planning to use the tractors for farm work.
Before purchasing a salvage tractor, consumers should make a list of the tasks they need the tractor to do. Then, they should take their list to a farm equipment dealer to determine the amount of horsepower necessary. For example, most people purchasing a tractor for a horse farm choose compact models with no more than 45 horsepower. Buying a tractor with a little more horsepower than necessary means that the engine lasts longer because it isn't always working at maximum load. People who want to make hay often choose a tractor with 50 horsepower, but 70 horsepower would be too much.
The tractor's ability to connect with other implements for various jobs is just as important as its power. Whether this is the drawbar for pulling; the power takeoff, or PTO, which spins and connects to implements that the user pulls behind the tractor or to front-mounted equipment; or the hydraulic system, which features cylinders to elevate and lower a hitch among other movable tools. Ensuring that those interfaces work makes the difference between getting a deal on a salvage tractor and having to spend a considerable amount of money on refurbishment.