Your pastures have come through the winter well and the lambs and calves are dropping… that means it’s time to get your farm equipment ready to ensure you run a productive and profitable farm this season.
In this blog, we run you through our checklists of important farming tips that will help set you up for a successful spring.
The months ahead are when your agricultural machinery is going to earn its keep as you rush to make the most of spring’s growth. Checks and maintenance done now will pay off in reduced downtime when it matters.
- Start with a thorough clean, even if you did one at the end of last season (Birds may have nested in the gears, and rodent may have chewed through wiring).
- Check that all safety covers are securely in place.
- Grease all points, and ensure grease lines aren’t blocked.
- Check all chains are getting adequate oil.
- Check bearings for possible replacement.
- Check mower blades, and rake and tedder tines for possible replacement.
- Check knives in balers and loader wagons. If they need sharpening, use a knife sharpener with a cup wheel stone rather than a grinder, as these overheat the steel and cause them to blunt more quickly.
- Finally, put the gear to work somewhere and check that everything is OK, including all drivelines and driveshafts.
HEALTH AND SAFETY CHECKLIST
Making sure your farm is a safe worksite is a social as well as legal responsibility. The start of a new growing season is a good time to check all health and safety systems.
- Train or refresh staff on the health and safety systems in place and the responsibilities on them as employees under the Health and Safety at Work Act 2015. Employees, as well as employers, can now face hefty fines for negligence in the event of a workplace accident.
- Check that all staff have been trained on any new gear, in the event they need to use it. If your staff are well trained, this will also reduce machine downtime due to damage.
CROP PACKAGING CHECKLIST
Now is the time to get a good deal on net wrap, bale wrap, twine and silage covers for your forage harvest, so talk to your supplier and tick something else off the list.
Planning is the key to a productive and profitable spring and now is the time to get to it before the rush sets in!