If you use hydraulic hoses as part of your business here in the Houston area, it’s good to have a trusted team of experts at your side. Sapphire Hydraulics is dedicated to helping you solve or avoid hose problems that could slow down or even devastate your business. That’s why we’ve prepared this guide to provide you with a greater understanding of hydraulics, along with emergency hydraulic hose repair tips.
What is Hydrostatics?
Hydrostatics is part of fluid mechanics. It is a physics discipline that deals with the characteristics of fluids at rest, and with the pressure exerted by a given fluid (in a liquid or gaseous state) on a submerged object, material or surface. Hydrostatic pressure describes the pressure applied by fluid, under gravity̵
For practical purposes, hydrostatic principals help solve problems associated with pressure increases in deep water dives, for example, and pressure decreases that occur above when climbing to high altitude. Hydrostatic pressure is also generated by blood, against capillary walls, as it forces water from the body’s circulatory system. In hydrostatics, energy is transferred due to pressure differences. In another example, transmission systems use pressurized hydraulic fluid to power equipment or mechanical devices.
What is a Hydraulic Hose?
Hydraulic hoses are flexible, reinforced hoses, which transport hydraulic fluid between industrial equipment actuators, valves, and other components. Hoses typically include many reinforcing layers, including strong but flexible braided wire, to cope with the high pressure associated with hydraulic systems.
Users should carefully consider and select the best hydraulic hose characteristics for their intended application. The right combination of dimensions, materials, performance specifications, construction, and assembly options come together to create the ideal hydraulic hose for your business needs.
Why do Hydraulic Hoses Fail?
In general, hydraulic hoses fail due to one, or a combination, of the following:
- Incorrect component selection
- Poor assembly
- Improper installation
- Incompatible fluid and inner tube or hose
Many catastrophic hose failures can be prevented by watching for visible signs of a hydraulic hose problem. In some cases, however, hoses may burst with no obvious damage, and no prior warning, when the wire-reinforced outer braid fails or wears through. That’s why Sapphire Hydraulics recommends and provides complete preventative maintenance to protect your valuable hydraulic hoses.
How to Check for a Faulty Hydraulic Hose
Telltale signs of a potentially failing hose include:
Be on the lookout for leaks around the fitting, where it connects with the hose. You may also see tiny pinhole leaks elsewhere on the hose. This could signal an impending blowout. If not sufficiently secure, the fitting can blow off the end of the hose when pressure becomes too great. This is usually due to poor fitting installation, where the hose is not completely inserted into (and properly secured to) the fitting.
Bubbles under the hose cover
Watch for these hose bulges, which can occur from damage to the inner tube due to lack of lubrication or a loosened (or poorly attached) fitting. Our team can quickly repair or replace your hydraulic hose, designing a custom hydraulic hose solution to perfectly suit your application, if necessary.
Heat cracked hose
Check hose condition regularly, looking for dried out hoses, which may crack if you flex them slightly. Hoses may become dry and brittle due to age, lack of use, and improper storage/usage conditions. Exposure to heat and oxygen over time may cause hoses to harden and lose their flexibility.
Be on the alert for an overly bent hose, bent beyond its allowed safe radius, may burst. Hoses that appear bent, especially those which maintain the bent position after being moved, should be evaluated by a professional for hydraulic hose repair, reassembly, or replacement.
Deteriorated inner tube
This can occur due to compatibility issues. The hose may have been exposed to fluid outside its intended specs. Generally, you must replace either fluid or hose material so that they can safely co-exist. An eroded inner tube can also be caused by a mismatch between hose size or diameter, and interior fluid pressure. This deterioration may not be visible on the surface of the hose.
When you see an obvious twist in your hydraulic hose during an inspection (or notice twisted and broken wires after the hose fails), it may have been twisted during production. The hose may require reassembly, repair, or hydraulic hose replacement.
Cover abrasion or wear
Watch for isolated worn areas, where part of the hose wears away due to repeated rubbing against another object. To prevent failure, our team can replace or repair the hydraulic hose assembly, adding hose guards for protection, along with clamps to keep the hose from contacting other objects on its path.
Replacing a Hydraulic Hose
To protect your valuable hydraulic equipment, your premises, and yourself, we recommend calling on local hydraulics experts like our team at Sapphire Hydraulics for professional hydraulic hose replacement in Houston. For a DIY effort, you will need to keep a stock of hydraulic hoses and crimpers on hand. Ideally, assign this task to an employee who has been properly trained by your hose supplier. The employee should be certified to handle such a repair or replacement.
Hydraulic hose replacement requires practiced technique and specialized equipment, due to unforgiving tolerances between machinery components. Contamination must be avoided while working on your hydraulic system, so make certain no tiny hose particles get into your system during an in-house repair.
Use a hydraulic hose saw, not an abrasive cutting method, to make a clean cut, at an exact 90-degree angle. This is crucial so that the hose lies flat inside the fitting. Be sure to crimp to precise manufacturer specs, which can be impossible if your crimping die is worn.
Expert Hydraulic Hose Repair and Replacement in Houston
When you need prompt, expert, on-site repairs to restore your hydraulic hose system to full function, you can count on Sapphire Hydraulics in Houston, TX. We offer comprehensive, mobile hydraulic services across multiple industries, working with all kinds of hydraulic and industrial hose fittings, couplings, and adapters.
When needed, we design customized solutions for all your hydraulic hose needs. Emergency service is always available because our team is on call to serve you – 24/7. We typically respond to your location within the hour. That’s just one reason why we are Houston’s hydraulics leader.
Call Sapphire Hydraulics today at 713-331-1131 for emergency service or to schedule a service call.