LOCOMOTIVE AND RAILCAR MAINTENANCE
Timely maintenance of locomotives and railcars is essential to their effective and safe operation.
When a regular schedule of inspecting, servicing, and preventive maintenance is followed,
problems that can degrade effective and safe operation can be discovered and corrected before
they cause serious maintenance costs or accidents. Locomotive and railcar equipment
maintenance is a team effort involving the railroad supervisor, the rail crews, and maintenance
personnel. Individual activities may make these maintenance requirements more stringent but not
reduce them. Installation Commanders shall have procedures for maintaining a system (tickler
system) which will automatically remind maintenance personnel when a maintenance action
(inspection or service) must be performed. This system shall provide Installation Commanders
with warnings far enough in advance to achieve an effective allocation of maintenance resources.
A computerized tickler system with software that displays 60 day, 30 day, and 10-day warnings
upon computer start-up is preferred.
Daily Locomotive Maintenance Maintenance
Maintenance personnel shall ensure that all locomotives are checked and serviced prior to daily
operation. Form 5, Appendix B, contains a list of the items which maintenance personnel must
check during this daily inspection. Form 5 shall be maintained for at least 90 days.
Quarterly Locomotive Maintenance - Maintenance
During quarterly inspections, maintenance personnel shall inspect all items required for the daily
inspection, the manufacturer's recommendations for quarterly inspections and the following:
a. Air Hoses. Inspect for age/signs of damage; renew brake pipe air hoses every eight
b. Battery. Check batteries for dirt and corrosion, and clean; clean battery terminals and
check batteries for proper bracing in battery compartment. Use proper safety equipment when
c. Drive Belts. Check all drive belts for cracks, fraying, or abrasions and adjust or
replace as necessary.
d. Engines. Check for loose parts or components; leaks from fuel, lubrication, and
cooling system; low oil pressure, high temperature, overspeed devices, and shutdown systems.
e. Electrical Relays, Contacts and Contactors. Wipe silver-faced contacts using clean,
lint-free cloth; renew worn contact points as necessary; renew weak or broken springs; tighten
loose screws, nuts, and connections; with systems de-energized, operate devices manually to
detect friction or binding. Always use lock-out, tag-out procedures.