What Are The Parts Of The Tractor That Needs To Be Checked Before Operating - Parts & Information

Before operating your tractor, it's important to go through a checklist of pre-operational checks. This is especially important to do if you haven't used your tractor for a long time.   

For a full list of pre-operational checks, make sure you refer to the tractor's owner's manual. The steps below are general steps, and your tractor may require different steps depending on its model.   

Pre Operating Checklist For Tractors
Pre-Operational Checklist for Tractors - Source: DedovStock / Shutterstock.com

What Are The Parts Of The Tractor That Needs To Be Checked Before Operating?

Before operating the tractor, make sure you check all parts of it thoroughly including making sure that it has enough oil and coolant levels before doing anything else. This is applicable to all tractors regardless of model. Generally, there are five steps that need to be followed before operating any tractor: hydraulic pressure check, tire pressure check, engine oil and coolant check, visual inspection and controls check.  

You should adjust the tire pressure in accordance with the instructions written on the side of your tires which can typically be found at each wheel well. If you don't know how to do this if you have misplaced your manual, you can ask for professional help to make sure that you're doing it correctly and this will not damage your tractor.

It's vital that you check the oil and fluid levels on your tractor before taking it out for a spin because if they are below the minimum level, then there may be problems like clogging or damaging of components. You should also locate the breather screw on top of the engine as well as at each hydraulic tank and open it to ensure the lines are free of debris which might lead to blockage.

Lastly, always perform a walk-around inspection prior to operating any tractor as this is considered as one of the most important safety checks that needs to be done before starting its motor. If you need further instructions on how to do this, then be sure to refer to the owner's manual.

Failure to perform pre-operational checks and safety checks can lead to serious injury or equipment damage.

What Are Two Things You Must Do Before Starting a Tractor?

The two most important things to do before starting your tractor are to ensure that your tire pressure is within the optimal range, and you check your engine oil level to make sure it's adequate. If either of these are not in good conditions then start up your tractor with caution.   

Checking that tires have enough air pressure will increase safety while using the tractor because it will help prevent slippage if they are under-inflated or collapse if they are over-inflated. Not having enough oil for the engine can cause damage by causing the components to hit the ground when starting or reversing gears. This can lead to premature braking system failure, which is extremely dangerous if you're working with your tractor on inclines so always double check how much oil there is starting anything else.

Why is it Very Important to do a Pre-Operational Check Up of a Tractor?

Your safety as well as the preservation of your tractor are the two most important reasons to perform pre-operational checks on your tractor.

If you neglect your pre-operational check, then it can lead to serious damage to the tractor. For instance, if you don't ensure that there is sufficient oil in the engine compartment before starting up your tractor, it might start up with insufficient lubrication which will cause components to be scraped against each other. This can lead to an early breakdown or catastrophic failure of these components if not caught soon enough.

When checking for levels of oil and coolant, make sure they are at adequate levels. They should also be checked on a regular basis which varies depending on usage and geographic location as well as seasonally. Make sure that all nuts that connect hydraulic hoses are connected properly since if they come off then they can damage parts of the engine and other components.

Checking the tire pressure is a simple way to make sure your tractor is safe before you start it up. The best place to check this is near the wheel well where there should be a sticker with all of the required information. If not, then consult your owner's manual for what type your your hydraulic hydraulic system system..

Why is Checking your Tires before Starting the Tractor Important?

It's very important to make sure that your tires are within optimal range because if they're under-inflated then this can lead to slippage which can damage the tractor, and if they are over-inflated then they can collapse. Slippage causes early braking system failure, which is dangerous especially when working on inclines because it will cause components to hit the ground. It also might reduce their life causing an early replacement expense.

Basic Tractor Pre-Operational Checks

Below you will find a list of the most important things to check on your tractor

Fill the Tank With New Fuel

New fuel is more important than the type of fuel because some types of fuel might not work as well as others with your equipment. Make sure you check what type it requires and try to use that type every time you refuel. Work With a Good Deal of Pressure – You need to ensure that there is sufficient pressure in your hydraulic system. If there is not, then you need to check if the pressure is coming from the engine or hydraulic pump. Ensure there are no leaks in your hydraulic system by checking all of the hoses and connections.

Inspect and Clean the Battery

If your tractor has a battery, then you need to inspect and clean it. To keep the battery at optimal performance, you should wash off any corrosion or dirt from it with water and baking soda until its completely free of debris and acid build up.

Assess Tire Condition

Look over your tires to see if there is any damaged rubber or obvious leaks. If you find anything wrong with your tires, then quickly fix it before starting the tractor because if the damage goes unnoticed, then it will cause slippage and can reduce lifespan leading to early replacement expense.

Make Sure all Nuts Connecting Hydraulic Hoses are Connected Properly

This is an important because if they come off then it can cause catastrophic damage to the engine and other parts of the tractor.

Check the Brake System

Make sure that your brake system is in good condition by braking a few times just to see if everything feels right. Check that there's no problem with your brake pedal or operator presence switch.

Examine the Different Seals for Leaks

Ensure that there are no leaks coming from oil, hydraulic fluid, and coolant by looking at all of the different seals on the tractor to make sure they aren't covered in any fluid. Look around them to see if you can spot any thinly spread fluid that may indicate a leak.

Sharpen Blade Attachments

If you have any blade attachments for your tractor, then make sure that they are sharp enough to cut through the grass. Dull blades will not do a good job at cutting and this can lead to uneven cuts which can damage the lawn. Make sure that when you sharpen each attachment, you dry it off before storing it back in your tractor, so it doesn't rust.

Inspect Headlights for Proper Functionality

Check that your headlights are in proper condition by checking if they work. You can do this by turning them on or off, or making sure the indicator light works when trying to start up the tractor.

Check Belts for Cracking or Slippage

If there are any belts on your tractor, then you need to check their condition. You can do this by checking the belt for cracks or slipping so that you know it's still in good enough condition to function well the next time you use it.

Check all Fluid Levels

You'll need to check all of the fluid levels on your tractor with a dipstick. This includes checking the engine oil, transmission oil, power steering fluid and any other fluids that may be used in conjunction with your equipment.

  • Engine Oil - Check for low or dirty oil, if it is low you may need more. If the level is okay then there's no need to check anything else.
  • Transmission Oil - Check that the oil looks clean and has the right amount of lubrication in it. Low transmission oil can cause damage to your tractor while incorrect lubrication can affect its lifespan.
  • Power Steering Fluid - Check for low power steering fluid which can cause damage to your engine and corrode other parts. Make sure there is enough lubrication in the fluid and that it doesn't look dirty or contain any water or debris in it.
  • Coolant - Check that there's enough coolant in your system. Low coolant can cause engine damage and heat up excessively, so make sure you add more if necessary.
  • Hydraulic Fluid - Check for low hydraulic fluid which can cause damage to the engine and other parts of the tractor. Make sure there is enough lubrication in it and that it doesn't look dirty or contain any water or debris in it.
  • Fuel - Check that there is enough fuel in your tank. Make sure you fill it up with the right type of gas before starting the tractor, otherwise this will lead to engine damage.

Tires and Wheels

Simple checks for your tires before operating your tractor include:

  • Properly Inflated - Make sure your tires are properly inflated according to the manufacturer's specifications. If they aren't, then you run the risk of tire failure which can cause damage to other parts of your tractor.
  • Check Tires for Cuts or Breaks in the Tread or Sidewalls - Make sure there are no major cuts or breaks in the sidewalls and treads. If you see any, then they will need to be repaired or replaced so that your tractor remains safe and functional.
  • Check Tire Tread Depth - Make sure your tires have enough tread depth for them to operate properly. If they don't, then it's time for new ones.
  • Check Wheel Bearings - Make sure your wheel bearings are working properly by giving them a spin. If they aren't, then you need to replace them so that your tractor remains safe and functional.


A quick check on your tractor battery includes the following:

  • Securely Held Down - Make sure that your battery is securely held down to prevent any hazardous, unexpected movement during operation.
  • Make Sure It Is Charged and Maintained Properly - Check the status of your battery's charge and make sure it's up to par so you know it won't fail at a crucial time when using your tractor. Make sure there are no cracks, leaks or damage to the terminal covers.
  • Cables - Make sure your cables are free of corrosion and have no obvious signs of wear. If any of them do, then you'll need to replace these as well. This is especially important if they are exposed to water or mud because this can cause significant damage over time.
  • Connections are Clean - Make sure that all of your connections are clean to ensure they are receiving the optimal charge. Corrosion on any of these parts can affect how well your tractor is working.
  • Electrolyte Level is Good - Make sure that you check the level of your battery's electrolyte. If it's low, then add more distilled water to make up for any lost fluid.
  • Check for Leaks - Check around the top and sides of your battery case for any obvious signs of leakage or damage from past leaks. If there is a leak, then you need to take your battery out and have it repaired or replaced.

How Often Should a Tractor Be Serviced?

About every 50 hours of operation or once a year, depending on the type of tractor, is how often it should be serviced for best results. It's important to stay on top of regular tractor service to get the maximum performance out of all your tractor's parts.

Final Thoughts

Pre-operational checks are a critical part of the safe operation of a tractor. Parts of the tractor to check include coolant, hydraulic fluid, fuel, tires and wheels, batteries and connections. Regular tractor service is also necessary to keep all your parts in good condition.

With these tips in mind about what are the parts of the tractor that needs to be checked before operating , you're ready to safely operate your machine. Keep these tips in mind to keep your tractor running well for years to come. The next time you go out to operate your tractor, check off these items on the list and you'll be good to go.