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Hydraulic Tools & Equipment – Examples and Applications
Hydraulic tools operate using the force created by pressurized fluids. The force is transferred as energy through the system to initiate the machine’s dynamic components to complete a wide range of tasks and applications. Hydraulic equipment can generate much greater force than pneumatic tools of a similar size because fluids are incompressible, allowing hydraulic systems to operate at much higher pressure levels. Because of this, hydraulic tools are often used in construction and heavy-duty industrial applications.
Hydraulic systems encompass many different components and offer many benefits for a wide range of industrial applications. Metro Hydraulic is an experienced distributor and service provider of hydraulic components and can assist you in finding the right hydraulic solutions for your business.
Hydraulic Systems 101
Hydraulic systems consist of numerous parts, including the fluid, reservoir, hydraulic pump, electric motor, valves, and hydraulic cylinder. The design of these components often varies to fit the complexity of hydraulic system applications.
The hydraulic fluid acts as the energy transfer medium in hydraulic systems. There’s a vast selection of hydraulic fluid for different applications. But generally, the best hydraulic fluid will have the following basic features:
- Thermal stability
- Resists chemical corrosion
- Hydrolytic stability
- Long lifespan
- Wear-resistant characteristics
These characteristics are some of the main reasons many applications use oil-based hydraulic fluids. Oil-based fluids can be designed to offer the desired anti-wear, viscosity, and anti-corrosion capabilities with minimal safety, operating, and maintenance issues.
However, there are situations where oil-based fluids aren’t suitable. For example, fire/rescue operations cannot use oil-based fluids because they present fire hazards. So, instead of oil-based fluids, these operations can use fire-resistant hydraulic fluids like water-glycol and invert emulsion or polyol and phosphate esters.
The reservoir holds hydraulic fluid in a convenient location for the pump inlet. It also transfers heat from the system, facilitates the release of moisture and air from the fluid, and allows solid contaminants to settle.
The hydraulic pump moves the hydraulic liquid through the hydraulic tool and converts mechanical motion and energy into hydraulic energy. The pump can draw energy from an electric motor, internal combustion engine, air pressure, or power take-off. There are different pumps, including pistons, vane, and gear. But all of them work on the same principle that includes displacing fluid volume against resistant pressure or load.
The actuator converts the hydraulic fluid power back to mechanical energy. An actuator can either be:
- Rotary (hydraulic motors) that convert pressure and flow into torque and angular displacement, or
- Linear (hydraulic cylinders) convert pressure and flow into linear force and displacement.
Actuators come in varying designs, but the piston types are the most common.
The valves regulate the flow as well as system pressure. They control flow between the reservoir and pump, pump and actuator, and within the actuator itself.
Hydraulic Tools/Equipment Examples & Applications
Hydraulic machines are widely used for their ability to transfer a substantial amount of power through flexible hoses and small tubes. Hydraulic systems can move heavier loads and provide greater force than pneumatic, electrical, and mechanical systems. They supply constant torque and force irrespective of speed, which is impossible in other systems.
Benefits of Hydraulic Tools and Equipment in Industrial Operations
- Easy to use: The simple levers and push buttons make it easy to start, accelerate, decelerate and stop.
- Accurate: The controls increase accuracy and make it easier to operate machinery, reducing the chance of human error
- Handles a huge weight range: Hydraulic systems are fluid systems and have no levers, pulleys, or gears. This means it can easily accommodate weight variations.
- Constant force and torque: The pressurized fluid system supplies consistent force and torque, and the effects are not affected by speed changes.
- Fewer moving parts: This makes the hydraulic system simple, safe, and easier to maintain. It also makes them economical compared to electrical and mechanical systems.
- Doesn’t spark: This makes hydraulic systems safe to use in mines and chemical plants.
Other Examples of Hydraulic Equipment/Tools
Some common industrial applications of hydraulic equipment include:
- Powering construction cranes: Companies use cranes for a range of work like lifting and moving large and heavy materials. Hydraulic cranes can generate a lot of power, enabling them to lift heavier loads. They also do not need cumbersome gears and pulley, making them easier to maintain.
- Construction industry: Hydraulic systems have played an essential role in most of today’s modern construction and processes. These machines can lift, push, pull, dig and do a range of back-breaking tasks that would be nearly impossible to perform manually. They can also pump concrete and mold bricks, among other things. Hydraulic systems facilitate the quick and efficient construction of skyscrapers and highways.
- Creation of barriers and fences: Fences and walls provide a physical barrier to prevent unauthorized access. Hydraulic tools and equipment can be used to install these barriers and fences to protect area boundaries, slow traffic or access, give direct access to garages or building entrances, and deny unauthorized access.
- Tunneling and mining: Almost all equipment used in the mining industry includes hydraulic parts integrated for maximum productivity and performance. With a small mechanical force applied, the hydraulic equipment will perform complex tasks like crushing stones, digging, tunneling, and transporting heavy loads.
- Securing street signs to metal posts: Hydraulics can also be used to secure street signs to metal posts, especially those that are situated at great heights.
Metro Hydraulic, Your Trusted Distributor & Service Center of Industrial Hydraulic Equipment
Metro is the leading hydraulic equipment supplier and service center for industrial hydraulic tools, parts, jacks, and lubrication equipment. For over 70 years, we have provided hydraulic parts and equipment services to commercial, automotive, refuse, construction, and marine industries. Our 20,000sq-ft facility based out of Newark, NJ, boasts cutting-edge solutions and skilled teams that ensure customers enjoy consistent quality at all times. We provide an unmatched customer experience that has allowed us to create long-lasting professional relationships with our customers.
We carry a wide range of inventory that includes:
Contact Our Experts for All Your Hydraulic Needs
At Metro Hydraulic, we supply a range of hydraulic parts to different sectors across all industries worldwide. We carry a massive inventory for immediate shipment. Browse our expansive product offerings and services to find components that fit your operational needs. If you are unable to find a product in your desired specification, we also provide customization services. We can help you design and build custom hydraulic pumps, motors, etc., to match your exact specifications.