CASE Launches TrackCare Undercarriage Monitoring Program
For utility contractors, having equipment armed with the latest technologies can boost productivity and the bottom line. But even the newest equipment is subject to normal wear and tear, as well as routine maintenance that requires it to be temporarily taken out of service. However, knowing when maintenance is required and properly planning for it can increase uptime and avoid any ill-timed breakdowns.
Recently, CASE Construction Equipment unveiled its TrackCare Undercarriage Monitoring Program, which collects undercarriage measurements and observations in the field and then correlates that data into manageable/actionable information to plan maintenance activities, monitor performance and make decisions to help manage the performance and costs of the undercarriage. TrackCare is compatible with all makes, models and types of steel-tracked equipment, with compatibility with rubber-tracked machines in the works. Monitoring uses both ultrasonic and traditional undercarriage measuring tools to centralize, analyze and report on undercarriage health and performance.
CASE TrackCare matches a cloud-based system with a mobile app to collect undercarriage measurements and observations in the field and formulate this data into actionable information. This enables business owners and fleet managers to plan maintenance activities, monitor performance and make decisions to help manage the performance and costs of an undercarriage, which is often more than 50 percent of the lifetime maintenance costs of the machine.
CASE TrackCare is performed by CASE dealers and gives easy access to data and reporting that allows fleet managers to identify maintenance needs ahead of time, identify improper operation or unusual wear patterns, and ultimately keep the lifetime owning and operating costs of that asset down.
“TrackCare allows you to easily take and record undercarriage measurements, take and store pictures for reference, as well as input information on operating practices, recommended repairs, and other jobsite or application data,” says Tim Hansen, product marketing for undercarriage and ground engaging tools, CASE Construction Equipment. “The system calculates wear rates and provides total undercarriage data that allows you to plot trends in wear, service and replacement rates. This information helps you optimize the uptime of tracked machines and get the most out of its service life.
“And because the system works on all steel-tracked machines, from dozers to excavators, it allows your
local CASE dealer to be your one-stop shop for total lifecycle undercarriage management, monitoring and service across your whole fleet — making your life easier and ensuring fleet-wide undercarriage strength and performance.”
TrackCare monitors the major components of an undercarriage, including the track chain and links, track shoes, bushings, idlers, sprockets and rollers.
One of the advantages of the new system is the ease of use for operators in the field, Hansen says. “Often ties in the field you are using calipers and rulers and inputting the information by hand in muddy, dirty conditions. With TrackCare, the information is collected via an Android- or Apple-compatible app and uploaded to the cloud where the data can be evaluated by contractor or the dealer. An additional benefit from the manufacturer’s point of view is that we can see any patterns that may be developing and share that with our engineering team to help us improve our undercarriages in the future.”
Maximizing uptime, of course, is paramount for any equipment operator, and the information gleaned from TrackCare not only minimizes the potential for untimely failures, but helps optimize the maintenance process itself – from both the operator’s and dealer’s point of view. “When you know that tracks are getting worn and nearing replacement, you are able to plan for it around your crew’s schedule, which is especially important now considering the workforce issues we are facing,” Hansen says. “In addition, the dealer can ensure that all the parts in stock and ready to go when the machine is brought in for service.”
With the TrackCare program fully implemented for steel-tracked machines and on the horizon for rubber-tracked machines, CASE sees future potential in measurement technology for ground-engagement tools like bucket teeth and cutting blades, as well as increased use of AI to predict potential issues. All this means leads to increased uptime and an improved customer experience. “We are trying to instill loyalty by having proactive conversations with customers, whether it is for an existing CASE machine or for the future,” Hansen says.