Due to constant use, the bolts along the cutting edge on the buckets and blades on heavy equipment will start to come loose. You want to occasionally check the tension of the bolts to prevent worse problems. Here is a quick way to check the machines.
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Step 1: Use a Ball Peen Hammer
A ball peen hammer is a simple tool and a mechanic’s best friend. It can be used to check the tension on each bolt. Trying to use a wrench or socket to check the tightness or torque on bolts is difficult due to the high amount of wear on the bolts.
Step 2: Tap Each Bolt
With the bucket lowered, give each bolt on the inside a tap with the ball peen hammer. You will notice that a loose bolt will give off a different sound as the hammer will not bounce back when striking it. You can also tell the bolts are loose by lifting the bucket slightly as you can push the bolt in.
Step 3: Replace Loose Bolts
If you find any loose bolts, make arrangements to get them replaced as soon as possible. If you wait to replace the bolts, you could break the cutting edge on the bucket. Then dirt will get between them to place force and stress onto the cutting edge.
Step 4: Check the Bolts on the Bucket
Check the bolts on the blade of the heavy equipment using the same method. Tack the back of the hammer and give each bolt a whack. You want to listen for a consistent sound and feel the hammer bounce back after striking each bolt.
Make sure to check the bolts on all your bucket and blade attachments.