Quick couplings are an important tool for all activities that use hydraulic circuits in everyday operations.
Oil & Gas, earthmoving, industry, transportation and agriculture use quick couplings to change attachments effectively and safely. The mechanisms have been especially designed to perform connection and disconnection procedures without the use of wrenches and without causing leakage or contamination.
Despite the ease with which the hydraulic circuit may be opened, when under pressure the quick couplings stay extremely sound, preventing leakage of the fluid at high pressures and therefore potential danger to operators.
The quick couplings are also designed to be extremely resistant and durable and this, therefore, constitutes an investment that will pay for itself by reducing the costs of spare parts, downtimes and accidents at work.
Improper use, however, compromises efficiency and may cause accelerated wear and high performance levels of quick couplings can be guaranteed only if:
- they are used according to guidance laid out on the technical data sheet, such as dynamic fluid pressure and degree of resistance to corrosion of the material in relation to the environmental conditions in which it is used;
- maintenance is carried out according to the methods and intervals indicated by the manufacturer.
A little attention during daily use will extend the lifetime of the quick coupling. Prior cleaning of the coupling zones and use of suitable protective caps is such a small cost in terms of effort and time but, in the long run, makes a large difference in terms of performance and durability.
The quick couplings are designed to operate without the need for other tools, and their use may cause damage and compromise functionality. Release of residual pressure, in particular, must be entrusted to the appropriate mechanisms since external intervention will cause unwanted leakage and possible contamination of the ground.
Checks are to be carried out periodically with an interval that will depend on the application to pre-empt complications during use. Recommended maintenance includes the following:
- thorough cleaning of external components;
- lubrication of coupling zones or moving parts with oil/grease compatible with the specific seals;
- connection and disconnection tests;
- check of correct tightening torque of adapters;
- check of both coupled and decoupled seal;
- check of degree of hydraulic contamination of circuit.
Based on the results of the tests, replacement of the quick coupling should be assessed and planned well in advance so as not to cause interruption to daily operation due to inefficiency or wear of the component.
Stucchi has been designing quick couplings for over 60 years, providing a continuous flow of solutions and innovation – the end user can depend on both the quality of the component and full support. Detailed instructions and guidance accompany each of our products to convey best practices and enhance the purchase. There are a number of online educational and informative resources, including an e-learning platform. A troubleshooting area includes an exhaustive list of possible cases, and Stucchi customer support is available for any other information not covered.