How To Install Aftermarket Tracks on CTL/Skid Steer: Heavy-Duty Equipment

  • Written by Luis
Heavy duty mechanic working on a compact track loader

There are times when you will need to install replacement tracks on a CTL/skid steer due to wear, gouges or rips. The aftermarket tracks for these machines do not have many differences from the new OEM tracks. Learn how to change the tracks on most CTL skid steers with the following steps.

Change Tracks on a CTL

Step 1: Gathering the Right Tools

First, you want to make sure that you have the right tools for the job. You will need to have ratchets to remove the bolts for the compartment housing the grease valve. You will also need a socket wrench to take out the grease valve, pry bars to remove the track and a grease gun to add tension to the aftermarket track once it is installed onto the equipment. Items you need will include.

  •     Half inch drive ratchet
  •     17mm deep socket
  •     19mm socket with 6-inch extension
  •     pry bars
  •     grease gun

Step 2: Lift the CTL/Skid Steer

Place wooden blocks behind the machine. Lift the boom and then tilt the bucket until it is forward and pointing down. As the machine presses down on the bucket, the machine will pivot onto the blocks and lift clear of the ground until both tracks are clear.

Using the bucket on a compact track loader to lift the Kubota SVL 75-2

Step 3: Take Out the Grease Valve

The grease valve compartment will have two 17mm bolts. Remove the bolts using the half-inch drive ratchet. Once the hatch is removed, use the 19mm wrench to take out the grease valve. As the grease valve becomes looser, grease will come out as the tension will start to lessen along the track.

HD mechanic demonstrates how to remove the grease valve on a skid steer

Step 4: Take Off the Track

Use a pry bar along the top sprocket to bring in the idler, as this will help to loosen the track. The operator should fire up the machine and slowly walk the track back. As the pry bar moves along the sprocket, it creates tension that helps pull the idler in. You can also stand on the bottom track to loosen it up more. Work the pry bar along the sprocket as the track is moved around to walk the track off the gears. Do the same thing with the bottom back idler until the track comes completely off.

Using a chisel bar to pry the rubber track off a Kubota SVL 75-2

Step 5: Install the Aftermarket Track

Lower the CTL/skid steer so you do not have to lift the heavy track. You can use a second machine to lift the track or have a second helper available to lift the track with you. Place the track over the front idler as you want to install the aftermarket track the opposite way from how you took it off. Get the top of the track over the sprocket and then have the operator lift the machine back up into the air. Next, you will need to work the track over the back idler with the pry bar until it is in place.

Step 6: Tighten the Track

Clean out the grease valve compartment with paper towels as well as the grease valve. Screw the valve back into place and add grease into the machine as the track tightens up. If the grease valve does not take any grease, it may need to be replaced. Check the tension by having the operator walk the machine. There should be about a 2-inch gap between the bottom lower roller and the track.

Using a grease gun to tighten the track on a skid steer

For more information about aftermarket tracks for CTL/skid steers, contact Fortis HD.

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