The Ultimate Automobile Manufacturing Guide

The Ultimate Automobile Manufacturing Guide

Hydraulic Cylinders: Why They Fail And How To Fix Them

by Carlos Sullivan

Most people associate hydraulics with heavy machines like trucks, backhoes, and excavators used in construction. Surprisingly, many more industries, including automotive, mining, forestry and logging, shipbuilding, and aerospace, rely on hydraulic systems. If your machines use hydraulic systems, a faulty hydraulic cylinder can cripple their functionality. But what causes hydraulic cylinder failures? And more importantly, what is the best solution for this problem?

Why Do Hydraulic Cylinders Fail?

A hydraulic cylinder can fail for various reasons, including:

Seal problems

Most hydraulic cylinders come with wiper seals, buffer seals, rod seals, piston static seals, head static seals, and piston seals. These seals secure the openings found between different parts within the cylinder. By doing so, they facilitate the retention of hydraulic fluids within the equipment. Hydraulic seals often develop problems arising from heat erosion, chemical contamination, and improper installation. These problems cause leaking, contamination of the hydraulic rods, and, eventually, hydraulic cylinder failure.

Damaged or dented piston rods

The piston rod in a hydraulic cylinder has one critical purpose: to transmit the piston's force to a particular working machine component. Typically, with proper use, a quality piston rod should offer seamless performance. However, a piston rod can be problematic if its size isn't suited for a particular application or has a broken thread. Moreover, when the rod rubs against the seal or wiper, it develops dents and scratches that cause additional damage.


There are several causes of overheating in cylinders, with the most notorious being lack of proper maintenance. For a cylinder to function smoothly, it needs regular inspection and servicing. Without those, it's likely to be affected by inadequate lubrication, dirty fluids, and faulty accessories. All these factors heavily contribute to overheating.


A hydraulic cylinder comes with a barrel in which the piston and the piston rod move back and forth. One of the most common problems with the barrel, piston, and piston rod is that they are susceptible to rusting and pitting caused by a buildup of moisture. Once the rod has rusted and pitted, it's only a matter of time before it destroys the cylinder seal and compromises the equipment's efficiency.

How Can You Fix a Damaged Hydraulic Cylinder?

If your hydraulic cylinder has failed, you can choose to repair, rebuild, or acquire a new one. Buying a new cylinder is a colossal step likely to cost a pretty penny. If you would like to save money, the only options left are repair and rebuilding services. Although some people interchange the terms "repair" and "rebuild," they are different regarding hydraulic cylinders. Hydraulic cylinder repair involves fixing minor problems. On the other hand, if the cylinder has significant issues and some components need replacing, a hydraulic cylinder rebuild is necessary. 


About Me

The Ultimate Automobile Manufacturing Guide

My name is Ross Harper and I've always been interested in automobile manufacturing. I think it's amazing how cars and trucks are made and I've actually learned about this process by doing research about automobile manufacturing companies. You'll learn a ton of information in my blog, such as the history of automobile manufacturing and how these industries help the economy. You'll also learn about the assembly of automobiles, which includes stamping, welding, painting and the inspection of the new vehicles. In addition, you'll find out how automobile manufacturers place the interior components inside the vehicles. After reading my blog, you'll understand what it takes to manufacture a vehicle and how important this process is to everyone.