Correct tyre pressure can boost crop yields, LSM says

By: Peter Woodford

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Correct tyre pressure on agricultural machines can have a significant impact on overall crop yields, LSM Technologies director Peter Woodford says

Correct tyre pressure can boost crop yields, LSM says
LSM says incorrect tyre pressure can cause damage to soil

Soil compaction can reduce plant growth, root size and the ability of roots to penetrate the soil.

Soil becomes compressed (compacted) through agricultural practices, cultivation, and wheeled traffic. It restricts water and air distribution in the soil.

This can result in a lack of water and nutrient distribution and can cause slow seed emergence and diminished crop yields.

Tyre pressures also play a key role in prevention of soil compaction, and this is why LSM’s TyreGuard AG360 Tyre Monitoring System technology has been specifically designed for agricultural equipment with low tyre pressures to assist growers by contributing to maximum crop yields.

For soil to be healthy, soil particles and pore spaces should be close to 50-50.

When pore spacing is decreased, air and moisture are driven out of the soil and the soil density increases.

Deep soil compaction is of greater concern than near surface compaction. Soil compaction can be managed and minimised. Prevention of compaction is better than trying to repair it and once compacted, it can take years to undo the damage.

Research has shown that 70 to 80 per cent of compaction is done in the first pass. Compaction can vary depending on the soil type, soil moisture, tyre size, air pressures, and total loads. With conventional tillage, research has estimated that 90 per cent of a field can be tracked on during the year.

Some of this area can receive as many as four or five passes a year. By cutting down on the traffic in a field, compaction can be managed, and the subsoil allowed to regenerate.

Agriculturalists have long studied the impact tyre inflation has on crop yields.

Over-inflated tyres cause soil compaction, which limits the nutrients and water that roots can absorb. It also hinders essential microbial life development and encourages water stagnation.

Over-inflated tyres also create higher resistance, forcing growers to spend more labour and fuel in every season. Further, farmers will see uneven tread wear, shortening the lives of their tyres.

Growers who err on the side of under-inflation will similarly see decreased tyre life.

Fortunately, maintaining proper tyre inflation can oppose these effects in every way. Properly inflated tyres reduce soil compaction, improve traction and increase fuel economy.

Proper inflation also lengthens tyre life and increases workers' comfort as they operate machinery - and, of course, increase crop yields every time.

Correct tyre pressures are also critical for travelling irrigators and especially for lateral-moves and centre-pivots to provide smooth operation, alignment and avoid overloading of drive motors.

To get the biggest yield possible, growers need to check their tyre pressure often, but doing so can be time-consuming, compromising efficiency while in the field.

LSM TyreGuard AG360 TMSystem continuously monitors air pressure with valve-stem-mounted tyre pressure sensors. At any time, operators can see the current tyre pressure for each tyre at the press of a button, and they only need to check and target those tyres that need re-pressurisation, saving labour and time.

The LSM TyreGuard in-cab LCD display provides the operator with live tyre pressure and temperature information and audio and visual alarms to help make immediate corrective action. 

LSM Technologies provides a complete array of its LSM TyreGuard TMSystems that will suit all of a grower’s vehicles from light vehicles, tractors, harvesters, rigid trucks, semitrailers - anything with a pneumatic tyre.

With LSM Technologies FSM Fleet Safety Tracking Manager, a live online data portal means information about every single tyre can be seen at any given time, all from the one location remotely.

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