How to Test Your Charge Pressure


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Skid steers operate using various hydraulic circuits. The pressure in the charge circuit is a key component in getting your machine to move and provides valuable insight into several components. Each brand and model functions slightly differently, but this example of the Bobcat T300 can provide one perspective on what to look for if you are having issues with a machine that seems weak.

In order to test your machine so that you can find out where you are losing pressure, connect your hydraulic test kit to the charge pressure switch before turning your machine on. This is assuming you have a manually controlled machine where you can engage the brake. If you have an automatic machine, you will have to find a way to stall the machine at full throttle. In order to take your first measurement, you will want to get the machine up to normal operating temperature and leave it at an idle. You’ll gauge and record the charge pressure. Then, you will record the charge pressure at full throttle. After the first two measurements, you will take four more: forward and backward at 75% throttle on each side.

By doing this test, you will be able to have pretty strong confidence whether the issue is a weak charge pump, drive motor, or drive pump. This will help you save time and money by not needing to drive to the dealer to pay for a diagnostic test. If you need help recording your charge pressure or figuring out what issues you might have with your machine, don't be afraid to contact us!


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