Regular maintenance is crucial to the life of your forklift air filter. Inlet hoods must not be missing and all openings and tubes must be clear. Dented or damaged units and housings must be fixed or replaced to optimize operations. Make sure there are no leaks in the ducting to provide particles a trail straight to the engine.
Cleanliness of the filter is not a sign of life or death. Clean filters can have dirt and carbon deep down in the filter; dirty looking filters may still be working great. Filters are a low-cost investment to keeping things running smooth.
Keep air cleaners closed as much as possible! If there is no filter, there is no barrier between the engine and the outside world. Protect the engine during filter changes by keeping the opening covered. Just because you can’t see the dirt and particles doesn’t mean they won’t affect the engine.
Gaskets that are damaged should be replaced when changing forklift air filters. Be sure to check service instructions on if gaskets need to be replaced at each filter change and don’t use an old one you have laying around. (This is usually the case in EBA and ERA model air cleaners.)
When changing out lift truck filters make sure to use the same part number. Filters may look the same but they provide different seals that can affect airflow and can cause serious damage over time. The only time you should change model numbers is when there is an upgrade to an older style.
Forklift manufacturers give you recommendations on the routine you should follow regarding maintenance of your filters. Each new filter has a different set of recommendations and guidelines. Make sure you are up to date with the newest procedures. Keeping records and following these guidelines are necessary in the likelihood you need to use a warranty claim. It is often helpful to record the filter changes right on the filter itself. It doesn’t matter if you track it by miles or hours, just keep it consistent.
Dirty forklift filters can contaminate clean filters during a routine service change. Make sure to wash your hands or remove your gloves after handling the dirty filter and before coming in contact with the new one. It is also helpful to keep the new filter in the box until you are 100% ready to install it.
Tightening and inspecting the forklift air cleaner system connections is the last step. Make sure everything is free of holes and damage; worn spots and damage especially to the elbows, seals and connections must be checked thoroughly. Tighten all clamps and inspect pre-cleaners and inlet hoods. Reset manual filter indicators and make sure to record any and all action you have performed.