Monday, December 9, 2013

Who Wants to Stop Checking Pivot Tires? | by Shannon Peterson

A farmers’ work is never done. Smart growers know the off-season is the time to find and fix problems, to prevent in-season shut downs. They also know it is cheaper to maintain equipment than it is to fix it after a breakdown.

One of the likely tasks on your off-season list is checking the tires on your center pivots. Of course, you’ll be checking those tires again before the planting season, and during the growing season, and again during the season, and again, and again.

Checking tires takes time you really don’t have, especially during the irrigation season. As a testament to that, most flat tires aren’t noticed until the irrigation equipment stops, ruining the tire, gearbox, and sometimes the rim. And a flat tire means repairs that can cost $1,000 to $1,500 and downtime during the peak irrigation season when water is critical to maximizing yields.

So, while you’re thinking about taxes, budgets, planning, and off-season improvements, think too about a Tire Pressure Monitoring System (TPMS). Recipient of a 2012 World Ag Expo Top-10 New Products award, Valley® TPMS alerts you when there is a low-pressure situation and pinpoints the exact location of the tire.

The technology is widely used in the automotive and over-the-road trucking industries. A sensor on the tire’s valve stem measures tire pressure and transmits the information to your Pro2 control panel. You can see the information at the pivot point or remotely on your BaseStation™.

Identifying a slow leak before you get a flat tire lets you schedule preemptive maintenance at a time and location that is convenient for you, rather than fixing a flat in the middle of your field.

Investing in TPMS means you won’t waste time manually checking tires, which not only increases your productivity, it frees up some time for you. Although I suspect you’ll find other work that needs to be done.

Shannon Peterson
Marketing Content Editor

Shannon joined Valley Irrigation in 2013. She enjoys traveling with her family, particularly to national parks, and she occasionally writes about her travels for Home & Away magazine. Shannon also likes reading, trying new restaurants, seeing movies, and watching Husker football and Creighton basketball. However, she and her husband spend most of their free time chauffeuring their teenage son to activities and chasing their baby daughter.