Bobcat Tractors are among the top compact utility tractors currently on the market.
The machines are powerful, versatile, and built to last. But they are not without a few drawbacks.
One of the major issues with Bobcat tractors is difficulty in getting parts, especially for rural dwellers. Other problems include the short lifespan of some tires and issues with the charge pumps.
Read on to learn more about the common problems of these otherwise great tractors.
Related Article: Are Bobcat Tractors Any Good? (Explained for Beginners)
1. Frequent Failure of the Drive Motor
The drive motor is one of the powerpoints of these tractors, especially the Skid Steer Loader.
This component tends to develop fault rather too frequently in some Bobcat tractors. And this is common with tractors that are used for lots of work.
The bearing also seems not to last as expected.
Many users change the oil after 500 hours of use and carry out other routine maintenance to the best of their ability.
Still, there is a recurrent issue of oil leaks and problems with other mechanical moving parts.
In some cases, users have reported their not-so-pleasant experiences with the bearings. The bearings will most likely slip into the oil puddles and cause internal damages.
Clogged filters for the oil case drains also contribute to the failure of the motor.
When filters become clogged – something that happens regularly with some of the models – the hydraulic will mix with the gear oil.
That’s because the clogged filters will push the hydraulic into the motor and mix everything up.
This can cause some serious problems with the tractor’s engine.
Many owners who live far away from major towns and cities can’t easily access repairs for this frequent problem.
They are left with only one quick option, and that’s using improvised methods in an attempt to fix the problem.
Unfortunately, some owners only succeed in causing more problems with the motor. And this can lead to a total shutdown of the tractor in some cases.
2. Poor Quality of the Bobcat Tractor Tires
Some users who drive the Bobcat tractors on concrete, asphalt, and other types of hard surfaces discover a common problem.
The tractor tires do not last as long as expected.
In fact, this problem also applies to a few tractors used on the field or farm.
Thankfully, Bobcat provides a solution to this problem by designing reinforced tires that can withstand hard surfaces.
These tires spread the weight of the tractor evenly over a large area to increase balance.
Still, many of the tires in some models can’t resist hard, solid surfaces.
Apart from the problem of hard surfaces, the tires wear out rather quickly.
The reinforcements made on the tires were probably designed for specific types of surfaces. This means that the tires will still have a shorter lifespan if used on surfaces they are not designed for.
To make things worse, many of the tires featured on some of the tractors models are typically flat.
This will cause problems if the tractor is driven in locations such as construction sites and other places that are prone to tire punctures.
Tires from the factory are fitted to accommodate lots of air.
While this is a good thing since it allows for a smoother ride, tires with too much air can reduce the tractor’s balance.
In many cases, the tractor operator will have a tougher time getting full control of the machine, especially when maneuvering.
Driving the machine on areas that need plenty of balance will require a lot of effort. Things can even get worse if there is an extra occupant in the cab.
3. Faulty Charge Pumps
A common issue with the Bobcat tractors is the charge pump or leaking brake seal.
In some cases, the charge pump can become weak. This is especially true if the tractors are driven for long hours.
Ideally, the charge pump releases the required pressure to the brakes and prevents a free fall drive.
This isn’t the case with faulty charge pumps.
To make things worse, the problem can be tricky to figure out. And that’s because a weak charge pump may disguise as a problem with the motor.
It is not uncommon for many Bobcat tractor users to believe that their motor is faulty when the actual problem is with the charge pump.
In many cases, owners will spend time, effort, and money on repairing the motor, but the problem will persist.
However, a faulty charge pump can also contribute to the final failure of the motor drive, although it starts on its own.
The continuous deterioration of the charge pump leads to the motor becoming weak or the tractor beginning to tilt to one end.
4. Difficulty in Getting Spare Parts
One of the convenience features that people look forward to when buying heavy-duty equipment such as tractors is the availability of spare parts.
Regardless of how durable and well-built a tractor’s components and parts are, they will eventually break down and need replacement.
Unfortunately, being able to access readily available spare parts for many Bobcat tractors can be quite challenging.
This is especially the case with owners living in rural areas.
While other tractor brands work to make stores available in many parts of the country, Bobcat still has a long way to go in addressing this challenge.
It is common to hear users inquiring about how to locate stores selling Bobcat tractor spare parts.
Some users get frustrated after searching in vain, and simply decide to install a different brand’s spare part in their machines.
While this may work in a few cases, it is only a temporary solution and will ultimately lead to more problems.
It can even lead to a total breakdown of the tractor.
General Pros and Cons of Bobcat Tractors
Regardless of these problems, Bobcat tractors are mostly reliable.
The machines have their strengths and weaknesses just like any other tractors from other brands.
Here’s a quick rundown of the major pros and cons.
- The tractors are economical in the long-run
- Versatile machines, useful for construction, landscaping, and farm works
- Durable and great built quality
- Difficulty in accessing spare parts
- Possible charge pump and drive motor issues
- Tires may be problematic on some surfaces
General Review on Bobcat Tractors
Bobcat tractors rank among the highly-rated tractors in the market.
The brand employs top-notch manufacturing techniques, yet the tractors are reasonably priced.
Many people find the machines practical and functional considering their multi-purpose design. Some Bobcat tractor models are available for all kinds of activities you can think of on the field.
The brand also has good financing options for users who can’t afford an outright payment.
Indeed, there are tons of positive reviews about Bobcat tractors, and these are mostly true.
However, it is usually best to dig deeper to discover likely issues that may crop up if you choose to buy one of these tractors.
This is why an honest review on an independent, trustworthy website like this one is usually a good first step.
The information here will help you make an educated buying decision if you are eyeing any of these tractors.