Want to save yourself frustration, time and lots of money this winter, next summer, or whenever you take your combine out of storage next year?
-As soon as you're done harvesting, use a leaf blower or compressed air to blow off EVERY square inch of your combine. Inside and out. Especially under the cab and in the engine compartment. Don't overlook crevices and crannies associated with the fuel tank. This nasty job isn't merely to benefit the combine's appearance--crop residues attract rodents, and rodents gnaw on wiring harnesses. It's not uncommon for a main wiring harness to cost $1,200, not to mention $1,500 computer boards damaged when gnawed wires short together.
-Clean out the cab. Most modern cabs are relatively mouse proof, but leaving candy wrappers, pop cans, and other sugary treats in the armrest or on the floor is encouragement for the little rascals to figure out a way to get in.
-Clean or replace both cab air filters. The fine dust trapped in cab air filters often includes mold and fungus spores. Condensation, etc. in the filter and filter housing often encourages the growth of mold and fungus in the filters during storage. The housing and tracts get dosed, and you spend all next fall wondering why you're sneezing and having breathing difficulties.
-Treat the fuel tank with anti-gel. Even if you won't be running the machine in cold weather, anti-gel has beneficial fuel preservatives that can improve injection system performance.
-EMPTY THE FREAKING ROCK TRAP AND THE GRAIN TANK SUMP! Your mechanic will appreciate it.