How to Diagnose Hydraulic Cylinder Malfunctions

When your operations are disrupted by hydraulic cylinder failure, swiftly identifying and addressing the issue is crucial. Troubleshooting hydraulic cylinder problems is a foundational process that aids in pinpointing the underlying causes and restoring system functionality. Though comprehensive evaluation may take time, it is essential for uncovering the root of the failure and ensuring the hydraulic system operates effectively.

Indicators of Hydraulic Cylinder Issues

While a complete system shutdown is a clear indication of hydraulic cylinder failure, several precursor signs often manifest beforehand, including:

– System inoperability

– Erratic or sluggish operation

– Failure to retract

– Elevated temperatures

– Audible or vibrational anomalies from pumps or motors

– Leakage and fluid level irregularities

– Contamination concerns

Identifying the Causes of Hydraulic Cylinder Failure

Troubleshooting Car Lift Repair Near Me hydraulic cylinder malfunctions demands patience and attention to detail, but it ultimately saves time, expenses, and manpower in the long run. Before initiating any diagnostic procedures, refer to the Car Lift Repair Near Me manufacturer manuals for your cylinders and equipment to follow system-specific instructions.


Seals naturally deteriorate and experience wear over time. Failure to promptly replace them can result in hydraulic fluid leaks, leading to erratic behavior, instability, and other adverse effects. Damaged seals may also cause misalignment between the cylinder rod and seal, exacerbating operational inefficiencies.

During hydraulic cylinder troubleshooting, prioritize seal inspection, as they are a primary cause of failure. Regular seal checks during maintenance routines can preempt hydraulic cylinder failures.


Low pressure within the hydraulic cylinder can impede operations. Pressure drops may stem from various sources but are often due to compromised flow to the pump, resulting from damaged or worn component parts.

Similar to seals, inspect components for indications of wear, cracks, or other forms of damage to forestall hydraulic cylinder failure.


Side loading places considerable stress on hydraulic cylinders and can exacerbate existing issues within the system. Uneven wear occurs as the rod pushes and the piston drags with greater force on one side, potentially damaging worn components, bending cylinder rods, and eventually leading to hydraulic cylinder failure.

To mitigate side loading, adhere to proper cylinder mounting practices and ensure accurate alignment during installation.


Improper operations, heavy loads, environmental factors, and other factors can inflict physical damage on hydraulic cylinders, resulting in:

– Piston damage or wear

– Corrosion such as rust or pitted piston rods

– Bore scoring

– Weld fractures

– External barrel dents

During troubleshooting, conduct a visual inspection of the equipment, and cease operations immediately if any physical damage is detected. Continuing to operate with physical damage poses significant risks to equipment and jeopardizes the safety of workers and bystanders.

Experiencing Hydraulic Cylinder Issues? Contact HCI!

Upon diagnosing Car Lift Repair Near Me hydraulic cylinder failure, it may prove more efficient and cost-effective to procure a replacement cylinder. Hydraulic Cylinders Inc. offers an extensive inventory of aftermarket hydraulic cylinder replacements tailored to your specifications, ensuring prolonged operational efficiency. With same-day shipping available for all in-stock models, we aim to expedite your return to productivity.

Hydraulic Cylinder Failure Troubleshooting: An In-Depth Guide to Resolutions

December 4, 2023

Car Lift Repair Near Me Hydraulic cylinders stand as pivotal components in various industrial settings, serving to convert fluid power into mechanical force. Despite their critical role, hydraulic cylinders may encounter failures that disrupt operations and incur significant downtime costs. In this article, we delve into the common causes of hydraulic cylinder failures and offer practical remedies to effectively address these issues.

Common Triggers of Hydraulic Cylinder Failures:

Fluid Contamination: Contaminated hydraulic fluid emerges as a primary culprit behind cylinder failures. The presence of particles, water, or air within the fluid can accelerate wear and tear, diminish efficiency, and ultimately lead to cylinder failure.

Remedy: Maintain a vigilant watch over hydraulic fluid quality through regular monitoring and upkeep. Employ efficient filtration systems to eliminate contaminants and ensure fluid compliance with system specifications.

Seal and Gasket Deterioration: Over time, hydraulic cylinder seals and gaskets may degrade due to wear, exposure to elevated temperatures, or contact with harsh chemicals. Leaky seals contribute to hydraulic pressure loss, thereby compromising cylinder performance.

Remedy: Conduct periodic inspections of seals and gaskets, replacing them at the earliest indication of wear. Opt for high-quality, compatible seals, and ensure meticulous installation practices to forestall leakage.

Car Lift Repair Near Me Cylinder Rod Wear: Excessive wear or damage to the cylinder rod can arise from abrasive contaminants, misalignment, or insufficient lubrication. Such issues can lead to seal deterioration, leakage, and compromised cylinder functionality.

Remedy: Enforce regular inspections of the cylinder rod to detect signs of wear or damage. Ensure proper alignment, apply suitable rod coatings for protection, and uphold adequate lubrication to prolong rod lifespan.

Overloading and Side Loads: Subjecting the cylinder to forces beyond its designated capacity or imposing side loads can induce structural damage, hastening premature failure.

Remedy: Clearly define and adhere to load limitations. Employ appropriately sized cylinders for respective applications, avoiding side loading. Consider integrating safety features like overload protection to mitigate damage during unforeseen scenarios.

Inadequate Lubrication: Insufficient lubrication can escalate friction and wear between moving parts, diminishing cylinder efficiency and longevity.

Remedy: Institute a regular lubrication regimen employing recommended lubricants. Ensure accessibility to lubrication points and verify compatibility of the lubricant with cylinder materials.

Effectively addressing hydraulic cylinder failures necessitates a proactive stance encompassing routine maintenance, diligent monitoring, and adherence to best practices. By identifying and mitigating common issues such as fluid contamination, seal degradation, rod wear, overloading, and lubrication deficiencies, industries can markedly extend the lifespan of their hydraulic cylinders and curtail downtime. Regular inspections, comprehensive training for operators and maintenance staff, and utilization of premium-grade components stand as indispensable facets of a successful Car Lift Repair Near Me hydraulic cylinder maintenance regimen. Investing time and resources in preventive measures can ultimately yield heightened operational efficiency, reduced repair expenditures, and enhanced overall productivity. Reach out to us for further information on solutions to hydraulic cylinder failures.

Hydraulic Cylinder Internal Leakage:

Internal leakage within the hydraulic cylinder encompasses several sources, including leakage stemming from the cylinder body seal, piston rod seal, sealing cover, and excessive wear of the piston seal.

The Car Lift Repair Near Me piston rod and seal cover seal may experience leakage due to factors such as wrinkling, compression, tearing, wear, aging, deterioration, or deformation. In such cases, it is imperative to replace the seal with a new one.