Chinese Tractor Maintenance/General Maintenance

This page contains general maintanence information applicable to most tractor models.

This page is part of the Chinese Tractor Maintenance book. Go to the Chinese Tractor Maintenance book.



This section is a summary of the recommendations of Chinese tractor owners for changing fluids in their tractors. The fluids of concern here are cooling, hydraulic fluid, engine oil and gear oil. Recommendations for fluids to change and the fluids to use when you first get your tractor are given. General procedures for changing fluids are described that are applicable to most tractors. Procedures for specific tractor models can be found in sections for the tractor model.

Changing Fluids After Delivery


Tractors are delivered in two likely conditions:

  • Crate
  • Assembled

If your tractor arrives disassembled in a crate (a crate tractor) then it is highly recommended that you change all of your fluids before running the tractor. Although fluids shipped with crate tractors are improving, there is a long history of these fluids being of substandard quality and causing mechanical problems long before the factory recommended first fluid change.

Another issue with the Chinese tractors is the metal shavings, chips, flakes, dust and dropped parts that the manufacturing process leaves in the fluid pathways that have not been cleaned out. By removing the original fluids, flushing, replacing filters and replacing the fluids you will remove most of the offending material. This will reduce clogging, premature wear and breakdown of your tractor.

If you are buying/have bought an assembled tractor from a dealer, ask the dealer if the fluids have been changed. If the dealer has changed the fluids you may want to ask some details about how it was done. If no flushing was done during the fluid change then you may still want to do your own fluid change.

Regardless of whether you change the fluids when you first receive your tractor you should replace them after you have run the tractor for a few hours (5–10 hours). During the first few hours of operation many mill marks on mating metal surfaces of moving parts will wear off and be suspended in the working fluid, caught in a filter or settled on the bottom of a pan. Any metal fragments that remain suspended in the fluid will cause additional wear on the tractor's working parts. These metal flakes should be removed after a few hours by flushing and replacing the fluids to prevent unneeded wear.

General Fluid Change/Flushing Procedure


This section contains general instructions for flushing out the fluids the first time you change the fluids in your tractor. Subsequent fluid replacement should not require flushing unless you detect excessive metal particles in the drained fluid.

Kerosene can be used as the flushing agent. It has sufficient lubrication that it can be used for a short time for running in your tractor for the engine oil, hydraulic oil and gear oil. It is thin enough to work as a solvent to break loose metal particles in pans and on the walls of fluid passageways.

Kerosene can be reused if it is filtered between uses. About 10 gallons will be sufficient for most Subcompact and Compact Chinese tractors if it is reused. It can be run through an oil filter for filtering.

Since gear oil is the heaviest oil in your tractor, if you are reusing the kerosene for flushing all of the oil based fluids, perform the gear oil flush last.

==== Engine Oil

The main function of engine oil is to keep the engine cool and maintain its temperature in cold weather too and to dissolve the dirt particle in it and set them down.The additive in engine oil work as a detergent and mix the dirt particles in it and keep away from the engine from friction.The good engine oil will always in its natural colour that is golden.The best engine oil does not contains any colour additives,it will be in pure golden colour. The shell rimula and helix are the best engine oil of the world.

Injector Pump Fluid Change



Hydraulic Fluid Change/Flush


(Intro TBS)

The following is the procedure for replacing the hydraulic fluid:

  • Drain the hydraulic fluid:
    • Start tractor.
    • Allow the engine to run a few minutes to warm up the hydraulic fluid and pump.
    • Cycle the 3 Point Hitch (3PH) a few times. Leave the 3 Point Hitch fully raised.
    • If you have a Front End Loader (FEL) cycle the lift and bucket on the Front End Loader a few times. Leave in the up position.
    • Turn off engine.
    • Place bucket under hydraulic fluid reservoir drain.
    • Open drain on hydraulic fluid reservoir.
    • Lower the 3PH.
    • Lower the FEL.
    • At this point for tractor owners with a single pump for both Hydraulics and power steering the following is done:
    • Close the reservoir drain.
    • If there is fluid remaining in the reservoir then you can remove it with a suction device like a turkey baster.
    • Locate the hydraulic fluid screen if you have one. Clean the screen and put it back in. If you have a hydraulic fluid filter then leave it in place for now.
  • If you which to flush the hydraulic system (see #Changing Fluids After Delivery) then do the following:
    • Fill the hydraulic reservior with kerosene.
    • Follow the procedures to drain the hydraulic fluid.
  • If you have a hydraulic fluid filter then replace it.
  • Fill the hydraulic fluid reservoir.
  • Start the engine and cycle the 3PH and/or FEL.
  • If the hydraulics do not work then follow the procedure here Chinese Tractor Maintenance/Trouble Shooting#Replacing/Flushing Hydraulic Fluid Caused 3 Point Hitch/FEL/Power Steering To Quit Working

Power Steering Fluid Change/Flush

  • Drain Power Steering:
    • Raise front end of tractor (allows wheels to be turned).
    • Remove the hydraulic hoses from steering cylinder.
    • Turn steering wheel left and right.
    • Reattach hydraulic hoses to power steering cylinder.
    • Lower front end of tractor.

Gear Oil Change/Flush


The oil used in the transmission and rear axle is normally the same as in is used in the 4x4 front axle. Also use the same procedure for flushing.

Transmission/Rear Axle Fluid Change Flush
  • Drain out the old gear oil. See the section for your specific tractor for the location of the drain plugs.
  • Fill the transmission and axle to the normal level with kerosene.
  • Start up the engine (you didn't drain the engine oil and forget to put it back in did you?) and drive the tractor. Use both forward and reverse gears so that the faces of the gears get flushed. This should only require a few minutes.
  • Stop the tractor and park on a level surface.
  • Drain the kerosene from the transmission and axle.
  • Refill the transmission and axle with your choice of gear oil.
    • Fill until the dip stick shows full or oil drips out of the unscrewed weep hole in the housing (whichever is applicable).
    • Since gear oil can be thick it can take time for it to level out throughout its housing. When you think you have it full wait for 10 minutes and then check again. It may require several iterations of filling and waiting to completely fill the gear case.
4x4 Front Axle Fluid Change Flush

Do the front axle flush at the same time as the transmission if you have sufficient kerosene. Follow the same procedure as with the transmission.



Another "fluid" to change is the fuel. Just to be on the safe side it is a good idea to drain the fuel from the fuel system. You don't know how long the fuel has been in the tank or what its quality is. Replacing the fuel might prevent you from having to clean/replace your fuel injectors.

  • Drain fuel tank.
  • Drain sediment bowl.
  • Replace the fuel filter.
  • Fill fuel tank.

If there seems to be significant sediment or "chunks" in your drained fuel you may have algae in your tank. When you put new fuel in the tank obtain some biocide and add the recommended amount.

Replacement Fluids


There are a great variety of brands and types of fluids that can be successfully used in your Chinese tractor. Many of the fluids have been found by owners at Walmart and Napa.

Engine Oil


(Intro TBS)

In cold weather climates a lighter weight engine oil should be used to aid in cold cranking and to reduce the work load on the engine.

Engine oils used successfully by Chinese tractor owners include:

  • Shell Rotella or Delo 400 15W/40
  • shell Rimula 20w/40 is a multigrade oil and best for tractors

Injector Pump Fluid


Use non-detergent oil. Use a weight appropriate for your air temperature. 30wt is a good all-around choice.

Hydraulinc Fluid / Power Steering


In cold weather climates a lighter weight fluid should be used to aid increase the operating speed of the equipment.

Hydraulic fuild that has been successfully used by Chinese tractor owners include:

  • AW32 (for cold country). (will speed up operation).
  • Walmart Super Tech Transmission/Hydraulic oil (not all walmarts have it).




Gear Oil


Gear oil is used in the tractor transmission/rear axle and if the tractor has 4 wheel drive it us used in the front axle.

Since Chinese tractors use "yellow metal" for some parts the gear oil must be yellow metal safe. Yellow metal is copper, brass, bronze etc. The gear oil that you buy should say on the label that it is "yellow metal safe". Gear oil that does not say that it is "yellow metal safe" may have added agents to aid in its performance in high heat and/or high pressure environments. These additives will cause oxidation of the yellow metal. The oxidation will cause pits in the surface of the metal and eventually the part will fail. One sign that your yellow metal has oxidized is a black color on the surface.

Gear oil should show that it is low/anti foaming on the label.

Gear oils that have been successfully used by Chinese tractor owners include:

  • Rotella GL-4 - walmart
  • GL-5 80W/90
  • Super Tech 85W/140
  • Kubota Super UDT (true synthetic for winter).



Diesel fuel obtained from your local filling station as well as truck stops can be used in your tractor.

Cooling System


Radiator Fin Cleaning


The radiator fins, over time, accumulate dust and debri between the fins reducing the cooling efficiency of the radiator. This causes the engine to run hotter.

When dust and/or debri builds up between the fins the fins must be cleaned. One method of cleaning is to use compressed air.

  • Remove the radiator screen
  • Blow the compressed air into the BACK of the radiator so that the debri goes back out the front of the radiator. Trying to blow air into the front of the raditor may cause debri to become lodged tighter into the radiator fins.
  • Replace the radiator screen.

High pressure water is NOT recommended for cleaning the radiator. This can easily damage the radiator fins.

To reduce the amount of debri entering the radiator the radiator screen can be replaced by a filter or augmented. See Chinese Tractor Maintenance/Modified Cooling System#Radiator Screen