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How to make sure you buy the right second-hand tractor

Reduce the risk when buying a used machine by following Tadhg Brosnan and Colm Egan’s checklist

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When thinking of buying a second-hand tractor, there are a number of items that need to be looked at

When thinking of buying a second-hand tractor, there are a number of items that need to be looked at

Thorough checks minimise the risk and help you get value for your money

Thorough checks minimise the risk and help you get value for your money

Check the dash for fault codes which should appear after engine start-up

Check the dash for fault codes which should appear after engine start-up

Examine tyres’ side walls for cracks, cuts and damage

Examine tyres’ side walls for cracks, cuts and damage

Review the service record of the tractor to see if the hydraulic oil and filters have been changed regularly

Review the service record of the tractor to see if the hydraulic oil and filters have been changed regularly

The front axle should be leak-free and wheel hubs dry — if they are wet with gear oil, it suggests a problem

The front axle should be leak-free and wheel hubs dry — if they are wet with gear oil, it suggests a problem

Hydraulic spools should be examined for leaks and operation

Hydraulic spools should be examined for leaks and operation

Examine the colour of the exhaust smoke — blue or white/grey mean there are problems

Examine the colour of the exhaust smoke — blue or white/grey mean there are problems

Check the assistor rams for leaks and see if the lift is moving up and down as required, with no shuddering or knocking from the hydraulic pump

Check the assistor rams for leaks and see if the lift is moving up and down as required, with no shuddering or knocking from the hydraulic pump

Test to see if the PTO is turning on in all the different speeds

Test to see if the PTO is turning on in all the different speeds

Look to see if the PTO seal is leaking at the back of the tractor

Look to see if the PTO seal is leaking at the back of the tractor

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When thinking of buying a second-hand tractor, there are a number of items that need to be looked at

Care should always be exercised when buying anything second-hand, and this is particularly true with tractors.

With so many makes, models and size available, you need to consider carefully before investing in a machine that will be used so often over the next 5-10 years on the farm.


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