Signs That Indicate Your Equipment is Being Overworked

  • Editorial Team
  • Heavy Construction Equipment
  • 4 January 2023

For construction businesses, heavy equipment is one of their most important assets. If something is wrong with your machinery it will mean that you will have to face additional maintenance costs and deal with down time which will directly impact your project schedules. This reason should be enough to understand why it is so important for businesses to follow OEM’s instructions regarding proper equipment usage. Make sure that you always perform pre and post operation inspections and are always keeping an eye out for any warning signs that indicate that you are overworking your equipment.

If you continue to overwork your equipment it would only result in the machine getting damaged and becoming less productive and efficient overtime. Equipment with diminished power requires extra maintenance and repairs and you will have to deal with more frequent components and parts replacements. If your equipment is dealing with excessive wear and tear it would only decrease your profits over time.

Once you realize that your equipment has been overworked or is reaching the end of its service life you should try to replace it. However, if you do not have the budget to replace all of the older equipment to be able to meet the demands of all your projects you should try to extend your fleet and continue to grow. No matter what you choose to do it helps to be aware of signs that indicate if your equipment is being overworked. Make sure to be on the lookout for the following warning signs so you can protect your profits and productivity.

Warning Lights

It should not be a surprise that warning lights being on indicates trouble. If the warning lights are on, it means that the equipment sensors have detected an issue and are trying to bring it to your attention. Ignoring warning lights or covering them up will not fix the issue. If you see that the indicator lights are lit more often it probably means that the equipment is not being serviced properly and is instead being overworked. It is even worse if the warning lights go out when the problem has not yet been resolved. Usually the light would only burn out if it had been on for too long or too often.


Machines that are being serviced on regular intervals and used with proper care would not be breaking down. So, if your equipment is breaking down more and more that means you are probably overworking it. Project schedules suffer a lot due to equipment downtime and it is quite costly for all parties involved if you have to find a CAT 140M motor grader while in the middle of a project.

Although people working in the construction industry are going to have to sometimes deal with equipment failure but that does not mean that it is not unavoidable. If you notice that one particular machine of yours breaks down more frequently than other,  it could be because you are overworking it. By keeping equipment in use for too long, or over extending their capabilities you are only putting the machine under more pressure leading to it breaking down every so often.

Low fluid levels

If you want to extend the life of your equipment and ensure that it is productive you need to pay close attention to fluid management. If you notice that your equipment’s fluid levels are often low even though they are being checked and filled on a regular basis, it could be due to the machine being overworked. It is also possible that there is a leak somewhere, if it is not visible on the outside it could be an internal broken seal. If an internal seal is broken the fluid might leak into other parts of the engine or the hydraulic system so you need to be alert and get it fixed immediately.

Strange Sounds

Another indicator of whether or not your equipment is being overworked is the way it sounds. Equipment operators and other people working on a construction site should be aware of what the machine sounds like usually. If you notice any changes in the way it sounds it might be an indication that there is something wrong with the machine.