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How to Rebuild a Hydraulic Cylinder in 8 Steps

Hydraulic cylinders are essential components in many industrial and commercial applications, including agricultural, construction, forestry, manufacturing, and mining. Hydraulic cylinders are used to move or lift heavy objects or materials by converting pressurized hydraulic fluid into mechanical force. When a hydraulic cylinder is damaged, it needs to be repaired or rebuilt in order to return it to its original working condition. Rebuiling a hydraulic cylinder can be a challenging task, but with the right tools and knowledge, it can be done. In this article, we will provide a step-by-step guide on how to rebuild a hydraulic cylinder.

Step 1: Gather the Necessary Tools and Materials

The first step in rebuilding a hydraulic cylinder is to gather the necessary tools and materials. This includes a torque wrench, a set of wrenches, a hydraulic press, a hydraulic cylinder hone, a hydraulic cylinder seal kit, a feeler gauge, and hydraulic cylinder mounting hardware. Before beginning the rebuild, make sure all of the necessary tools and materials are on hand.

Step 2: Disassemble the Cylinder

The next step is to disassemble the hydraulic cylinder. Start by disconnecting any hoses or lines attached to the cylinder. Then, remove the cylinder from its mounting bracket to gain access to the cylinder components. Once the cylinder is free, unscrew the gland nut and remove the gland, piston, and piston rod. If the cylinder is equipped with a flange, remove the flange and associated hardware.

Step 3: Inspect the Cylinder Components

Once the cylinder components have been removed, it is time to inspect them for damage or wear. Inspect the cylinder bore for scoring or excessive wear. If the cylinder bore is excessively worn, it will need to be honed or replaced. Inspect the piston and rod for signs of wear or damage, and replace any worn or damaged parts.

Step 4: Hone the Cylinder Bore

If the cylinder bore is excessively worn or scored, it will need to be honed. To do this, place the cylinder in a hydraulic press and use a hydraulic cylinder hone to hone the bore. Make sure to use the correct size hone for the cylinder bore and hone the bore until it is smooth and free of imperfections.

Step 5: Clean and Inspect the Cylinder Parts

Once the cylinder bore has been honed, the next step is to clean and inspect the cylinder parts. Start by cleaning the cylinder bore, piston, and rod with a degreaser or brake cleaner. Then, use a feeler gauge to check for any imperfections or irregularities in the piston and rod. If the piston and rod are in good condition, proceed to the next step.

Step 6: Install the New Seals

Now it is time to install the new seals. Start by lubricating the seals with hydraulic fluid and then install them in the cylinder bore. Make sure to use the correct seal for the application and make sure the seals are properly seated in the bore.

Step 7: Reassemble the Cylinder

Once the seals have been installed, the next step is to reassemble the cylinder. Start by reinstalling the piston and rod, and then install the gland. Make sure to torque the gland nut to the correct specification and install any flanges or mounting hardware if necessary.

Step 8: Test the Cylinder

The final step in rebuilding a hydraulic cylinder is to test the cylinder. Connect the hoses or lines to the cylinder, fill the cylinder with hydraulic fluid, and then operate the cylinder to ensure it is functioning properly. If the cylinder is functioning properly, the rebuild is complete.


Rebuilding a hydraulic cylinder can be a challenging task, but with the right tools and knowledge, it can be done. By following the steps outlined above, you can rebuild a hydraulic cylinder in 8 simple steps.

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