In a world of 30-minute pizza deliveries, same day Amazon deliveries, and the ability to order a coffee with your mobile device and bypass waiting in line, we are a society that likes certainty and guarantees. This expectation extends into our professional lives as well. A common question I am asked by clients is “How long will my industrial/hydraulic hose last?”
Unfortunately, this is an almost impossible question to answer. There are many factors that can lead to the premature failure of a hose assembly, such as exposure to the elements, including harsh/extreme working environments, the equipment’s frequency of use, improper hose routing, and unfortunately, user error.
Hoses that are exposed to high heat or extreme cold tend to break down faster than hoses working at room temperature. There are specific compounds used in the hose manufacturing process that can delay the effects of a harsh environment and specific hose protection covers that can help protect the hose from welding sparks, the effects of ozone, abrasion, and metal splash in steel production facilities. But these only prolong the inevitable.
It’s been my experience that improper hose routing, which can cause unnecessary stress and abrasion, is a leading cause of hydraulic hose failure. Parker offers an in-depth look at this in their Best Practices for Hose Installation and Routing Rules. If there is excess stress placed on a hose assembly that is improperly routed, it will lead to a failure, typically at the end of the hose assembly, where the fitting is crimped.
Consistent Maintenence Is Key
A piece of commercial earth moving equipment that is used 40 hours a week is going to require more frequent hose maintenance than a consumer grade piece of mobile hydraulic equipment would that’s used only a few hours a month. Frequent inspection of hydraulic hoses in high-use equipment can help prevent any downtime caused by a failure.
As you can see, there are many variables that impact hose longevity. It’s imperative when speaking with a Cross customer service representatives, either in person or on the phone, to convey as many details as you can about your application, so we can recommend the right hose and accessories for your specific application.