How Water Guns and Excavators are Essentially the Same

CE Global Excavator

When you hear the word hydraulics, what do you think of? People tend to think that it’s the science of water, but hydraulics is so much more than that. Hydraulics is the mechanical function that operates with the force of liquid pressure. Hydraulics is used in the real world every day to design and manufacture high-demand products.

To better explain hydraulics, think of a water gun. When you press the trigger, it usually takes quite a lot of force for such a small object. There is a simple reason behind that. The trigger is stiff because you’re pushing pressure on the water inside the chamber. The water pressure created by your finger forces water up a narrow tube. The narrow tube leads to a hole on the front of the water gun where the water is squirted out. While hydraulics in a water gun is straight-forward, many compound machines use hydraulics to complete jobs efficiently.

Hydraulics is also at work in heavy construction machinery like an excavator. When the driver pulls the handle, the digger pumps fluid into narrow pipes that run along the arm of the excavator. The movement of the fluid causes liquid pressure that makes the arm to extend. Similarly, when the driver wants the arm to retract, the liquid pressure is kicked off and the arm stops extending. This hydraulic process creates an easier way for an excavator to lift and extend its arm to complete construction projects.

Hydraulics have improved work environments in every industry imaginable. Here are some examples of machines and systems that utilize hydraulic systems to function:

  • Aqueducts
  • Irrigation Systems
  • Log Splitters
  • Car Brakes
  • Boat Rudders
  • Aircraft Landing Gear
  • Small Elevators
  • Amusement Park Rides

There are two major types of hydraulic systems, open-center systems and closed-center systems. Open systems have varied pressure, but the flow is constant. When an open system is in neutral, the center valve directs all lines back to the liquid reservoir through the pump. Machines that use this type of hydraulic system includes log splitters and old tractors prior to 1960. Closed-center systems have varied flow, but the pressure is constant.

When a closed system is in neutral, the closed center valve blocks the flow of oil from the pump. Machines that use this type of hydraulic system includes construction equipment and modern farm equipment.

Hydraulic systems are so effective that they can create up to 10,000 pounds per square inch (psi). CEDARVILLE employs construction equipment that utilizes hydraulics to function. Call us at 610-705-4500 or email info@cedarvilleeng.com to find out more.

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