7 New Holland Skid Steer Drive Problems: (And Possible Fixes)

New Holland skid steer loaders are a popular choice for construction, landscaping, and agricultural tasks due to their versatility and compact design. These powerful machines are equipped with various attachments, making them indispensable for a wide range of applications. However, to maximize their productivity, it’s crucial to ensure that their drive systems are in perfect working condition.

Importance of a Properly Functioning Drive System

The drive system is the heart of any skid steer loader, as it controls the machine’s movement and functionality. A well-maintained drive system is essential for safety, efficiency, and overall performance. When problems arise in the drive system, they can significantly hinder your work, potentially leading to downtime and costly repairs. Recognizing and addressing these issues in a timely manner is vital to keep your New Holland skid steer loader running smoothly.

Identify Common Drive Problems and Offer Troubleshooting Steps

In this blog post, we’ll explore seven common drive problems that New Holland skid steer operators may encounter during their daily operations. For each problem, we’ll provide detailed explanations of the symptoms, possible causes, and most importantly, step-by-step troubleshooting guidance to help you diagnose and fix the issues. Whether you’re a seasoned skid steer operator or a newcomer to the world of heavy machinery, this guide will equip you with the knowledge and skills to keep your New Holland skid steer loader’s drive system in top-notch condition. Let’s dive into these issues and learn how to address them effectively.

New Holland skid steer lost hydraulics

Common Drive Problems

In this section, we’ll delve into four common drive problems that New Holland skid steer operators may encounter. We’ll discuss the symptoms, possible causes, and step-by-step troubleshooting procedures for each issue to help you get your skid steer loader back in optimal working condition.

Problem 1: Loss of Power

1. Symptoms

  • Sluggish movement
  • Inability to climb slopes or ramps
  • Reduced lifting and digging capacity

2. Possible Causes

Loss of power can be attributed to various factors, such as:

  • Hydraulic system issues
  • Clogged filters
  • Low hydraulic fluid levels
  • Malfunctioning engine
  • Worn-out hydraulic hoses or fittings

3. Troubleshooting Steps

To address the loss of power in your New Holland skid steer loader, follow these steps:

  1. Check Hydraulic Fluid Levels: Ensure that the hydraulic fluid reservoir is adequately filled. Top it up if necessary, following the manufacturer’s recommendations for the correct type of fluid.

  2. Inspect Hydraulic Filters: Examine the hydraulic filters for blockages or contaminants. Replace them if needed.

  3. Inspect Hydraulic Hoses and Fittings: Look for any visible damage, leaks, or loose connections in the hydraulic hoses and fittings. Replace or tighten as necessary.

  4. Check for Engine Issues: If the problem persists, inspect the engine for any malfunctions or irregularities. Consult the engine’s manual for troubleshooting steps or seek professional assistance.

Problem 2: Unresponsive Controls

1. Symptoms

  • Controls do not respond to operator inputs
  • Lack of movement in the skid steer loader
  • Unusual dashboard or error code notifications

2. Possible Causes

Unresponsive controls can result from:

  • Electrical issues
  • Faulty control solenoids
  • Damaged wiring
  • Control system malfunctions

3. Troubleshooting Steps

If your skid steer loader’s controls are unresponsive, follow these steps to identify and address the issue:

  1. Check Electrical Connections: Ensure all electrical connections are secure and free from corrosion. Loose or damaged wires can disrupt the control system.

  2. Inspect Control Solenoids: Examine the control solenoids for any visible damage. If they are malfunctioning, they may need replacement.

  3. Review Error Codes: Refer to your skid steer loader’s manual to interpret any error codes displayed on the dashboard. This information can provide valuable insights into the specific problem.

  4. Seek Professional Assistance: If you can’t resolve the issue through these steps, it’s advisable to contact a professional technician who specializes in skid steer loader electrical systems.

Problem 3: Noisy Operation

1. Symptoms

  • Unusual or excessive noise during operation
  • Grinding, squeaking, or clunking sounds
  • Increased noise when steering or maneuvering

2. Possible Causes

Noisy operation can be attributed to various factors, such as:

  • Worn-out or damaged bearings
  • Loose or damaged components
  • Insufficient lubrication
  • Foreign objects in the track or wheel area

3. Troubleshooting Steps

To address noisy operation in your skid steer loader, consider these troubleshooting steps:

  1. Inspect Bearings: Check the condition of bearings in the drive system. Replace any worn-out or damaged bearings.

  2. Tighten Loose Components: Ensure all components in the drive system are securely fastened. Loose components can lead to unusual noises.

  3. Lubricate Moving Parts: Apply lubrication to moving parts in the drive system as per the manufacturer’s recommendations.

  4. Clear Debris: Examine the track or wheel area for any debris or foreign objects that might be causing noise. Remove them to prevent further damage.

Problem 4: Slow or Jerky Movement

1. Symptoms

  • Slow response to control inputs
  • Jerky or uneven movement
  • Difficulty in maintaining a straight path

2. Possible Causes

Slow or jerky movement can be caused by:

  • Hydraulic system problems
  • Contaminated hydraulic fluid
  • Valve blockages
  • Damaged or clogged hydraulic lines

3. Troubleshooting Steps

To address slow or jerky movement in your skid steer loader, follow these troubleshooting steps:

  1. Inspect Hydraulic System: Check the hydraulic system for any issues, including leaks, blockages, or damage.

  2. Change Hydraulic Fluid: If the hydraulic fluid is contaminated or deteriorated, drain and replace it with fresh, clean fluid following the manufacturer’s recommendations.

  3. Clear Valve Blockages: Inspect the control valve for blockages or obstructions. Clear any debris to ensure proper flow.

  4. Examine Hydraulic Lines: Check the hydraulic lines for damage, kinks, or clogs. Replace or repair them as needed.

Problem 5: Leaking Hydraulic Fluid

1. Symptoms

  • Puddles or drips of hydraulic fluid beneath the skid steer loader
  • Reduced hydraulic fluid levels in the reservoir
  • Poor hydraulic system performance

2. Possible Causes

Leaking hydraulic fluid can occur due to various reasons, including:

  • Damaged hydraulic hoses or fittings
  • Worn-out seals or gaskets
  • Loose connections
  • Hydraulic component damage

3. Troubleshooting Steps

To address hydraulic fluid leaks in your skid steer loader, follow these troubleshooting steps:

  1. Locate the Leak: Carefully inspect the hydraulic system to locate the source of the leak. Look for visible damage, loose connections, or worn-out components.

  2. Tighten Loose Connections: If you find any loose hydraulic fittings or connections, tighten them securely to prevent further leaks.

  3. Replace Damaged Hoses or Seals: If hoses, seals, or gaskets are damaged, replace them promptly. Ensure you use the correct replacement parts recommended by the manufacturer.

  4. Check for Component Damage: Inspect hydraulic components, such as the pump or cylinders, for damage. If any components are damaged, they may need to be repaired or replaced by a professional technician.

Problem 6: Vibrations or Shaking

1. Symptoms

  • Unusual vibrations or shaking during operation
  • Difficulty in maintaining control
  • Increased operator discomfort

2. Possible Causes

Vibrations or shaking can result from various factors, including:

  • Imbalanced or damaged wheels
  • Worn-out tires
  • Damaged drive system components
  • Misaligned or bent axles

3. Troubleshooting Steps

To address vibrations or shaking in your skid steer loader, consider these troubleshooting steps:

  1. Inspect Wheel Balance: Check the balance of the wheels. Ensure that they are properly balanced, and if not, have them balanced to reduce vibrations.

  2. Examine Tires: Inspect the tires for wear, damage, or irregularities. Replace tires if they are in poor condition.

  3. Check Drive System Components: Examine the drive system components, such as drive chains, sprockets, and drive motors, for any visible damage or issues. Repair or replace as needed.

  4. Verify Axle Alignment: Ensure that the axles are properly aligned. Misaligned or bent axles can cause vibrations. Correct the alignment as necessary.

Problem 7: Wheel Slippage

1. Symptoms

  • Wheels spinning without proper traction
  • Difficulty moving on slippery surfaces
  • Reduced control and maneuverability

2. Possible Causes

Wheel slippage can occur due to several factors, including:

  • Worn-out or damaged tires
  • Inadequate tire pressure
  • Low hydraulic fluid levels
  • Contaminated or slippery surfaces

3. Troubleshooting Steps

To address wheel slippage in your skid steer loader, follow these troubleshooting steps:

  1. Inspect Tires: Examine the tires for wear, damage, or irregularities. Replace worn-out or damaged tires.

  2. Adjust Tire Pressure: Ensure that the tire pressure is within the manufacturer’s recommended range. Adjust it as necessary for optimal traction.

  3. Check Hydraulic Fluid Levels: Verify that the hydraulic fluid levels are at the recommended range. Top up the fluid if needed.

  4. Choose the Right Attachment: Depending on the task at hand, use the appropriate attachment that provides better traction on the given surface.


New Holland Skid Steer Drive Problems

Credit: info.texasfinaldrive.com

Read More: Troubleshooting New Holland T6020 Problems: A Comprehensive Guide

Preventative Maintenance

In this section, we’ll emphasize the importance of regular maintenance for your New Holland skid steer loader’s drive system and provide valuable tips to prevent drive problems from occurring in the first place.

Importance of Regular Maintenance

Regular maintenance is the lifeblood of any heavy equipment, including New Holland skid steer loaders. It’s not just a best practice but an essential part of ensuring the longevity, safety, and efficiency of your machine. Here’s why regular maintenance is so crucial:

  1. Preventing Costly Repairs: By identifying and addressing issues early on, you can prevent them from escalating into costly and extensive repairs. It’s far more economical to replace a worn-out component during routine maintenance than to repair damage caused by neglect.

  2. Enhancing Safety: A well-maintained skid steer loader is a safer one. Neglected equipment is more prone to malfunctions and accidents. Proper maintenance ensures that your machine operates as intended, reducing the risk of accidents and injuries.

  3. Optimizing Performance: Regular maintenance keeps your skid steer loader in peak operating condition. This means it will perform tasks more efficiently, saving you time and resources.

  4. Extending Lifespan: Like any piece of machinery, a skid steer loader has a finite lifespan. Proper maintenance can extend that lifespan, providing a better return on your investment.

Tips for Preventing Drive Problems

Preventing drive problems begins with a proactive approach to maintenance. Here are some tips to help you keep your New Holland skid steer loader’s drive system in excellent condition:

  1. Create a Maintenance Schedule: Develop a regular maintenance schedule based on the manufacturer’s recommendations. Follow this schedule diligently to ensure all maintenance tasks are completed on time.

  2. Keep Records: Maintain detailed records of all maintenance and repair activities. This will help you track the history of your skid steer loader’s performance and identify any recurring issues.

  3. Inspect Hydraulic System: Regularly inspect the hydraulic system for signs of leaks, damage, or contamination. Address any issues immediately to prevent loss of power and hydraulic fluid leaks.

  4. Check Control System: Test the control system to ensure it responds properly and without delay. Address any unresponsive controls promptly to avoid accidents.

  5. Inspect Wheels and Tires: Routinely inspect the condition of wheels and tires. Replace worn-out or damaged tires, and ensure proper tire pressure for optimal traction and reduced wheel slippage.

  6. Lubricate Moving Parts: Apply lubrication to moving parts as recommended by the manufacturer. Lubrication prevents excessive noise, reduces wear and tear, and prolongs the life of components.

  7. Keep Work Areas Clean: Maintain a clean work area to prevent debris and foreign objects from entering the drive system, potentially causing damage and noise.

  8. Train Operators: Provide thorough training for skid steer operators to ensure they understand the machine’s capabilities, limitations, and the importance of regular maintenance.

  9. Use Genuine Parts: When replacing components, always use genuine New Holland parts or high-quality aftermarket parts recommended by the manufacturer.

  10. Store Properly: If the skid steer loader is not in use, store it in a clean, dry, and protected environment to prevent damage from exposure to the elements.

By following these preventative maintenance tips, you can significantly reduce the likelihood of encountering drive problems in your New Holland skid steer loader. A well-maintained machine not only performs better but also provides a safer and more efficient working environment.

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When to Seek Professional Help

In this section, we’ll discuss the critical aspects of recognizing when it’s time to seek professional assistance for your New Holland skid steer loader’s maintenance and repair needs. We’ll also explore the numerous benefits of relying on skilled technicians for these tasks.

Recognizing When a Problem Requires a Professional Technician

While many drive problems can be diagnosed and addressed by operators or equipment owners themselves, some issues necessitate the expertise of a professional technician. Here’s how to recognize when a problem requires professional help:

  1. Complex Issues: If the issue is complex and beyond the scope of routine maintenance and basic troubleshooting, it’s time to call in a professional. Complex issues may involve intricate components or electronic systems that require specialized knowledge and tools.

  2. Safety Concerns: Any problem that poses a safety risk should be immediately addressed by a professional. This includes issues with unresponsive controls, hydraulic system malfunctions, or any situation where the skid steer loader’s operation becomes unsafe.

  3. Warranty Considerations: If your skid steer loader is under warranty, it’s essential to consult a professional technician for repairs and maintenance. Attempting DIY repairs might void the warranty.

  4. Electronic Diagnostic Tools: Some problems may require the use of electronic diagnostic tools that only professionals have access to. These tools can pinpoint issues accurately and save time and resources.

  5. Frequent or Persistent Issues: If you repeatedly encounter the same problem, it’s a sign that a deeper, underlying issue may exist. Professional technicians can identify and resolve these recurrent problems more effectively.

  6. Lack of Expertise: If you lack the knowledge or expertise to diagnose and fix a specific problem, it’s best to seek professional help rather than risk further damage.

The Benefits of Professional Maintenance and Repairs

Relying on professional technicians for maintenance and repairs offers several advantages:

  1. Expertise: Professional technicians have specialized training and experience in working with New Holland skid steer loaders. They are well-versed in diagnosing and addressing issues efficiently.

  2. Efficiency: Professionals can quickly identify and resolve problems, reducing downtime and increasing the machine’s productivity.

  3. Access to Genuine Parts: Professional technicians have access to genuine New Holland parts and components, ensuring high-quality replacements that maintain the integrity of your skid steer loader.

  4. Warranty Preservation: Professionals ensure that all maintenance and repairs are performed in a manner that preserves any existing warranties on the equipment.

  5. Safety: Professional maintenance and repairs prioritize safety, preventing accidents and injuries resulting from improperly addressed issues.

  6. Longevity: Skilled technicians can extend the lifespan of your skid steer loader by addressing issues proactively and ensuring proper maintenance.

  7. Reduced Costs: While professional maintenance and repairs may come with a cost, they are often more cost-effective in the long run compared to DIY solutions that may lead to further damage and expensive repairs.

Read More: Unveiling the New Holland T6 165 Problems: Solutions Revealed


In conclusion, maintaining and troubleshooting the drive system of your New Holland skid steer loader is essential for its performance, safety, and longevity. By identifying common drive problems and following the troubleshooting steps outlined in this guide, you can address many issues effectively.

Remember, regular maintenance and preventative measures are the key to reducing the likelihood of drive problems. By adhering to a maintenance schedule, inspecting your skid steer loader thoroughly, and following the manufacturer’s guidelines, you can keep your machine running smoothly.

However, when you encounter complex issues, face safety concerns, or lack the expertise to resolve a problem, it’s always wise to seek professional help. The benefits of relying on skilled technicians, including expertise, efficiency, and safety, far outweigh the costs.

By combining your own maintenance efforts with professional assistance when needed, you can ensure that your New Holland skid steer loader remains a reliable and efficient workhorse for years to come.


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