When it comes to hydraulics, high flow is sold as an upgrade option for those wanting to improve their efficiency or those in need of the right power for their attachments.
Opting to use high-flow attachments can seem like an unnecessary expense, with certain attachments such as augers having both standard-flow and high-flow models available. And high-flow attachments tend to run $1,000 to $2,000 higher than standard-flow options, depending on the manufacturer.
Yet while high-flow attachments and machines come with more up-front costs, they can earn back that money with increased productivity, our experts say. High-flow attachments perform more efficiently and complete jobs faster than standard-flow attachments.
Chris Trampush, a skid steer loader product manager with JCB, uses the example of clearing a three-acre field with a standard-flow mower attachment to explain the difference in efficiency.
“The blades on that attachment are not going to spin as fast as if I had a high-flow attachment,” Trampush says. “So, it’s going to take me twice as long to mow that field than it would with a high-flow mower where the blades are moving a lot quicker. Your high-flow mowers are only working 50 percent of the time versus a standard-flow attachment, where it would run the entire time.”
And high-flow machines are also more versatile, since they can run both standard-flow and high-flow attachments.