Just like us, hydraulic cylinders aren’t fond of weather that’s too hot or too cold. The weather can wreak serious havoc on the hydraulic cylinders if it’s not properly prepped for the season. Fluid viscosity and component materials can be compromised by temperature extremes within hydraulic systems. These extremes can cause performance issues and/or complete hydraulic system failure. While most hydraulic cylinders are engineered to withstand normal levels of heat loads, hydraulic fluid instability can also create operational issues that can affect the hydraulic system’s operating shelf life.
While high temperatures can destroy hydraulic systems, so too can low temperatures. Low-temperature effects on hydraulic systems include increased oil and hydraulic fluid viscosity. Fluid thickening can continue to where liquid congeals and inhibit fluid flow. Thicker fluid viscosity can also damage your hydraulic systems with a lack of lubrication and increased mechanical friction. Other low-temperature factors that can affect hydraulic system performance involve rubber components within the hydraulic system. Hydraulic seals, mounts, and hoses can incur damage when exposed to extremely cold temperatures.