If you have recently purchased a fertilizer spreader for your farm and are about to start using it, then you should know that your maintenance of the device is extremely important when it comes to keeping the machinery in good condition long term. Keep reading to learn about a few important maintenance tips.
Clean After Every Use
Your fertilizer spreader may go through a great deal of wear and tear during the beginning of the growing season. And, while it may be easy to simply leave manure in the device for weeks at a time, this is not a good option if you want to keep it in good shape. The acidic manure can eat away at the metal parts of the device and debris can work its way into the moving parts of the spreader.
To clean the device, you want to start by making sure that all of the manure product has been emptied. Running an extra length of your field to ensure this is wise. Once it is empty, you want to use compressed air to force manure off of the spindle, hopper, and spreader part of the device. Make sure to use a device that is made for use with agriculture equipment.
Once the initial accumulation is removed, you want to use cold water to spray the remaining manure from the spreader. Keep in mind that some types of manure are insoluble to cold water, so use warm water if the manure does not release after a good spray down.
Calibrate The Device Properly
Your spreader must be calibrated every time that you add a different type of manure to the hopper. This is necessary to ensure proper spread rate and spread pattern. This prevents over- and under-spread, and it also keeps your spreader from working too hard to force thick manure out of the hopper at a high speed.
To calibrate your spreader, you will need to input the density of the fertilizer, the amount of the product that you want to release on your field per cubic foot, and the speed that you want it released. Speed should be low and maintained at an even level to reduce the stress on the spreader.
You will also be able to calibrate the pattern or spray of the manure spread. A narrow spread applied slowly is best to reduce spreader wear and tear. This is especially true when a more dense product is utilized.
If you want to know more about fertilizer spreaders and how you can keep the machinery in good shape, speak with an agricultural manufacturer.