4 essential lubricant tips for winterizing farm equipment

Farm equipment sitting in storage

By Jon Woetzel, Manager Technical Services, Energy Lubricants, CHS from the Cenexperts blog

Harvest is tough. Once you’ve made it through some of the hardest weeks of the year, both you and your equipment deserve some R&R. But before your machines take a long winter’s nap, it’s important to get them ready for sitting dormant in the cold.

Even when your equipment isn’t running, lubricants play an essential role in keeping it protected. That’s why, as part of your yearly winterizing routine, you’ll want to assess your equipment’s fluids. Use these four lubricant tasks to protect your rigs all the way to spring.

1. Get a used oil analysis

Throughout harvest, your machines work overtime to meet the grueling demands of a farm’s busiest time of year. By the end of the season, all that wear and tear can take a toll on an engine, and seemingly small issues at this point can lead to bigger problems come spring.

A used oil analysis is an easy way to catch early warning signs of major issues that could be brewing inside your engine. This is because oil is the lifeblood of your equipment, touching nearly every part inside the engine.

Used oil analysis works by detecting any trace elements present in a sample of used oil from inside your rig. Based on the elements that turn up, lab technicians can identify a number of issues that may be waiting to happen in specific areas of your engine. Fix any issues before putting your equipment away, and you’ll set yourself up for success come time for planting. To get started, you can purchase a used oil analysis kit from your local CHS energy specialist.

2. Replace the engine oil

Once you’ve performed a used oil analysis, you may also want to consider an oil change before you put your machines away for winter. This is especially true if the results of your analysis reveal any traces of wear. After you make any repairs recommended by your analysis, give your machines some fresh, clean oil so you don’t leave acids and contaminants festering inside your engine for months on end.

Even if your used oil analysis comes back clean, you may still want to consider replacing your oil before winter. Remember, the longer an oil has been used, the less effective it becomes at protecting against rust and corrosion.

If you’re getting close to your change interval, it’s best to replace oil this season instead of waiting until spring. Just be sure to run the engine for at least 10 minutes before storing your rig to allow the oil to circulate. For protection all winter long, try a high-quality engine oil from Cenex such as MAXTRON® ENVIRO-EDGE® synthetic diesel engine oil, engineered for maximum lifespan and excellent protection against corrosive wear.

3. Top off your hydraulic tank

Another lubricant tip for winterizing your equipment is to top off hydraulic tanks. To function properly, hydraulic systems need to breathe, but since they’re not airtight, they’re prone to letting in moisture as equipment sits all winter. Condensation inside a hydraulic system is bad news due to the harmful corrosion it may cause.

The best way to prevent condensation in your hydraulic system over the winter is to minimize the airspace inside. The less opportunity air has to get in, the lower the chance that moisture will collect. Check your hydraulic fluid level, and if it’s not full, go ahead and top off your tank. Be careful, though, not to overfill. To further minimize condensation, you may also want to consider switching to a hydraulic fluid designed to prolong the life of your system’s seals, like MAXTRON® THF+.

4. Grease up moving parts

Finally, once you’ve taken care of your machines’ other fluids, complete the job by greasing any moving parts. Even though they’ll be sitting still all winter, moving parts can still corrode.Not only will a fresh coat of grease keep your equipment from rusting through the winter but it will also get it moving again easier come spring. For superior protection against rust and corrosion, try a Cenex grease such as MAXTRON® FS.

When the hard work of harvest is over, it can be tempting to overlook details like winterizing your equipment. But the period right after harvest is a valuable opportunity to take care of maintenance tasks that can fall through the cracks during busier times of year. Give your machines some TLC now, and you can both kick back soon for some well-deserved hibernation.

Co-op ownership opens a world of opportunities

A farmer and CHS employee holding a tablet standing together in a wheat field discussing cooperative ownership

When you choose to do business with CHS, you are connected to a world of opportunities powered by local experts.

As the nation’s leading farmer-owned cooperative, CHS creates connections that help its owners build their operations and their communities.

In celebration of National Co-op Month, we dug deep into the cooperative model to reveal seven benefits of being an owner of CHS. Benefits that extend far past the field. Watch a video on the benefits of cooperative ownership.

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New app puts CHS activity at your fingertips

farmer loggin in to MyCHS

Time. We never seem to have enough of it.  And every new tech tool seems to just add another online destination with a singular purpose. But not for CHS patrons. With a simple single sign-on, producers can see their CHS business activity all in one place, even if they have multiple accounts. Contracts, bookings, prepays, scale tickets, payment history and more for agronomy, energy, grain and seed business can be viewed, sorted – even downloaded – from anywhere, anytime. All from one, web-based app: MyCHS.

The biggest advantage? Saving time. CHS transactions are a touch away – whether in front of a laptop in a farm office, on a tablet in the field or on a phone in the tractor cab.

“I can customize what I can see,” says Lucas Goodwin, Minnesota farmer and MyCHS user. “Filtering is easy. And navigating between all the separate components, like the contracts and the settlements, is logical and quick.”

Lucas was among a group of CHS customers picked to give app feedback in small focus groups and then as a beta user, comparing the new MyCHS with the former Customer Resources tool. Getting customer feedback early and ongoing during the development process was critical to making sure the web-based app fit the way today’s farmer wants to use technology.

“It’s a nice upgrade,” he concludes of MyCHS. He was a user of the former application. The recent upgrade provides all producers doing business with CHS with the data they need to make timely, information-rich decisions.

“Our CHS producers have continued to advance and look for ways to become the best they can be in some of the toughest markets they’ve experienced,” says Megan Schmit, director, Grain Procurement for CHS Country Operations division. “Even our producers who may not have called themselves tech savvy are using more and more tools to better their operation and MyCHS is giving them access to their total business with us, not just grain.”

Megan was part of the CHS team helping connect with farmers and finding out what would serve their information needs.

“I’m excited that we’re not stopping here,” she adds. “We’re going to continually take feedback from our producers and employees to keep improving and enhancing this tool for years to come.”

MyCHS is a free web-based app, available to any farmer or rancher doing business with CHS. It’s easy to register here and start seeing what MyCHS can do to help you.

CHS reports $54.6 million of net income for third quarter of fiscal 2019

Company reports net income of $650.9 million for first nine months of fiscal year

CHS Inc. today announced its financial results for the third quarter and the first nine months of fiscal year 2019.

CHS reported:

  • Net income of $54.6 million for the third quarter of fiscal 2019 compared to $181.8 million for the restated third quarter of fiscal 2018. One-time pre-tax gains of $124.1 million in the restated third quarter of fiscal year 2018 were not realized in the same time period in fiscal 2019. One-time pre-tax gains of $19.2 million related to the purchase of the remaining 75 percent share of West Central Distribution, LLC were realized in the third quarter of fiscal 2019.
  • Consolidated revenues of $8.5 billion for the third quarter of fiscal 2019 compared to $9.1 billion for the restated third quarter of fiscal 2018.
  • Net income of $650.9 million for the first nine months of fiscal 2019 compared to $535.5 million for the restated first nine months of fiscal 2018, an increase of 21.5 percent.
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Top way to keep water out of your diesel

By Steve Hinds, Senior Business Development Manager, CHS Refined Fuels Marketing from the Cenexperts blog

diesel powered tractor in a corn field

Incompatible people are often said to mix like oil and water. But if you really want to talk about an unfortunate combination, look no further than fuel and water. Water in a machine’s fuel line can be a one-way ticket to trouble.

The good news about water damage is it’s preventable. Here’s what you need to know about diesel fuel water contamination and how to keep it from sinking your operation.

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Grant from CHS supports local 4-H improvements

BRANDON, SOUTH DAKOTA, June 26, 2019 –  The CHS retail business based out of Brandon, South Dakota, has announced a $5,000 grant to Lincoln County 4-H. This money will be used for repairs and new equipment to support poultry and rabbit projects.

“We are extremely grateful to receive this grant,” said Alina Krone-Hedman, the 4-H youth program advisor for Lincoln County. “It will significantly impact our rabbit and poultry members, as it will be used for purchasing more cages and items for showing, as well as improving the current equipment we have. With both these programs growing every year, this will help us guarantee animal safety.”

This grant will be used for a new rabbit show table, new rabbit and poultry cages, additional shelving for rabbits and poultry that will be movable to allow for better layouts in the barn as the exhibits expand, and repairs to current rabbit and poultry cages and equipment.

“CHS is honored to give back to such a strong local organization that does so much for our youth,” said Michael Van Otterloo, manager of the CHS location in Canton. “Many of our employees have grown up being a part of 4-H. The future of our rural ag communities begins with our children, and organizations like 4-H will help build a strong future for agriculture in South Dakota.”

This donation was made possible through the CHS Seeds for Stewardship program, a competitive grant program through CHS that matches funds for projects in rural communities based on three core focus areas: safety, ag leadership development, and broad community engagement.

Dicamba Cutoff Date Approaching

Dicamba cutoff dates are nearing for both South Dakota and Minnesota, find each news release below for further information on the application restrictions.

Minnesota: Application cutoff date June 20th
South Dakota Application cutoff date June 30th

SOUTH DAKOTA DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE NEWS RELEASE

For Immediate Release: June 17, 2019
Media Contact: Maggie Stensaas, 605.773.4073

Dicamba Cutoff Date Approaching

PIERRE, S.D. – The South Dakota Department of Agriculture (SDDA) reminds applicators that June 30 is the cutoff date for dicamba products.

The SDDA obtained Special Local Needs registration labels, also known as 24(c) labels, from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) for the following products: Engenia, Fexapan and Xtendimax with VaporGrip Technology. These labels establish a June 30 cutoff for applications of these products in South Dakota for the 2019 growing season. Applicators can use these products until soybeans reach the R1 growth stage, 45 days after planting or June 30, whichever comes first.

“While the weather has had an impact on planting this year, which I know is frustrating for many producers, the fact remains that warmer conditions in July increase the risk of volatility and drift when using dicamba products. The cutoff date is based on data which supports increased risk of drift after July 1,” says Secretary of Agriculture Kim Vanneman. “I encourage producers to explore the other products available to them once the cutoff date for use of dicamba has passed.”

Anyone applying Engenia, Fexapan or Xtendimax with VaporGrip Technology must also abide by the restrictions included in the EPA labels for those products, including recordkeeping requirements. Additionally, applicators applying or purchasing these products will have to complete annual dicamba specific training. Trainings can be found on the SDDA website at https://sdda.sd.gov/ag-services/dicamba/.

Agriculture is a major contributor to South Dakota’s economy, generating $25.6 billion in annual economic activity and employing over 115,000 South Dakotans. The South Dakota Department of Agriculture’s mission is to promote, protect and preserve South Dakota agriculture for today and tomorrow. Visit them online at sdda.sd.gov or find them on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.

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http://news.sd.gov/newsitem.aspx?id=25604


June 11, 2019

The Minnesota Department of Agriculture (MDA) is reminding pesticide applicators of the state-specific restriction for the use of the herbicide dicamba for the 2019 growing season. The product cannot be applied in Minnesota after June 20.

The 2019 Minnesota restriction is in addition to those established by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). The affected formulations are XtendiMax by Monsanto, Engenia by BASF, FeXapan by DuPont, and Tavium by Syngenta.

“We understand that late planting this season has caused concern for growers who want to use this crop management tool,” said Agriculture Commissioner Thom Petersen. “However, delaying applications in an attempt to control later emerging weeds can result in poor control and presents other risks. If you are one of the growers that has invested in dicamba technology, now is the time to use it because late planting combined with pre-plant tillage can offer advantages for weed control, according to University of Minnesota Extension.”

The June 20, 2019, cut-off date is based on the MDA’s ongoing investigations and informal surveys into reports of crop damage from alleged dicamba off-target movement over the past two growing seasons. In 2017, the MDA received 253 reports of alleged dicamba drift; 55 of those were formal complaints requesting investigations. Those reports impacted an estimated 265,000 acres. After state restrictions were put in place for the 2018 growing season, the number of complaints dropped dramatically to 53 reports, of which 29 were formal complaints. Just over 1,800 acres were impacted in 2018.

This year’s cut-off date was first announced on December 10, 2018. Over the winter, approximately 5,800 pesticide applicators attended trainings across the state as required by the product labels.

Dicamba is most effective early in the growing season. Product labels recommend application on small broadleaf weeds that are up to 4 inches tall.

To manage weeds after June 20, herbicides from Group 9 (Glyphosate), Group 2 (Pursuit, Classic, FirstRate), and Group 14 (Flexstar, Cobra, Cadet, Ultra Blazer) can be used. If you have herbicide resistant weeds such as waterhemp, follow University of Minnesota Extension recommendations on layering of residual herbicides such as Dual, Outlook, Warrant, and Valor.

In Minnesota, the XtendiMax, Engenia, FeXapan, and Tavium formulations of dicamba are “Restricted Use Pesticides” for retail sale to, and for use only by, certified applicators.

https://www.mda.state.mn.us/june-20-cut-date-remains-dicamba-use-minnesota

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Media Contact
Allen Sommerfeld, MDA Communications
651-201-6185
Allen.Sommerfeld@state.mn.us

Join us for the 2019 CHS Owners Forum webinar

CHS Owners Forum Webinar

Missed the 2019 CHS Owners Forum in your area? Tune in for the CHS Owners Forum webinar Friday, June 28, 1:00 to 2:30 p.m. CT, to hear business updates from CHS leadership including CHS President and CEO Jay Debertin. We will also take a look at industry trends and ask for your input on how we can make connections that support long-term success. Register here.

© 2021 CHS Inc.