What to check for when you buy a Komatsu

buy a komatsu

So you want to buy a Komatsu digger? You are probably thinking to yourself, “what do I look for?”! That is where we can help. 

At International Plant Sales, formerly BuyADigger, we sell thousands of diggers and ship them around the world to very happy customers. Don’t believe us? Check out our 5* reviews on Trustpilot. 

Are you ready for us to help you? Keep reading!

Purchasing a used Komatsu digger

When you want to buy a Komatsu either used or new, there are four main points of the machine you must check. 

  1. Undercarriage 
  2. Engine
  3. Final Drives
  4. Swing Motor

These areas to check apply when you’re looking to buy a Komatsu PC55 or a Komatsu PC360, or indeed any other machine in-between. 

All excavators have these components and it is important to check each of them very carefully.


The undercarriage is the lower sub-structure. This area is where items can be replaced such as sprockets towards the rear of the machine and rollers at the top and the bottom.

So, right at the back of the machine, looking at the undercarriage, you will have sprockets. When checking over the sprockets, you want to ensure that they are not right to a point. If the sprockets are right to a point, that means that things are starting to wear out and they will soon need to be replaced.

Check the rollers when you buy a Komatsu. Some smaller machines will have one roller and other larger machines will have more than one roller. Make sure that these rollers are nice and smooth. You do not want them to be worn out. You will want to ensure that the rollers do not make excessive noise when you track the machine. You can lift the machine up and let the tracks hang down, this will allow you the opportunity to roll the bottom rollers, checking that they move freely. If they are loose and they are clanking, this means the bearings need replacing. 

Track chains also need to be checked. Make sure there are no sharp points wearing through on the bushes. They should be nice, smooth and round. If they are not round and feel more of an oblong shape, this means they are worn out and need replacing. 

When you buy a Komatsu, especially if it is a used machine, you will want to check your roadliner pads. Make sure there are none that are loose. If they are loose, they will need replacing. We recommend walking on the machine and checking the pads. If they are moving when you walk then you know they are loose and need to be replaced.

Your front idler is also an important component to check over. When tracking, you want to make sure it is not flapping or making a squeaking noise. If your front idler is far forward, close to the tracks, this means your chains have stretched and need replacing. 


At first glance, with the engine running, you want to ensure there is no smoke and that there are no leaks. You may wish to open up the oil cap and check whether any oil is spitting out, doing this when the engine is running is best but only if the machine has not been moved or engine turned on for a while, as you do not want hot oil spitting over you. Where a face shield and protective gloves, as well as suitable overclothes to ensure your body is protected.

Final Drives

When checking the final drives, you will most likely need an allen key. The size of the allen key differs on each machine type, so make sure you take a set with you. 

The oil in the final drives is always half way, so ensure the final drive is up. Open up the top plug, pull it out, you may find it has a magnet on it. You are looking for any metal filings and also if there is oil on it. If you do not see wet oil on the plug then walk away, as it means the machine is dry of oil and more than likely has not been well maintained. It can be expensive to replace the final drive.

Swing Motor

When looking at the swing motor, you should see a dipstick. Check the oil level on the dipstick is at a sufficient level. Make sure also that it is not white in there, if it is white this means that there is water in the swing motor and you guessed it, that is bad.

Buy a Komatsu – New and Used

Four simple checks that you can apply especially when you look to purchase used or new machines in general. This will help you when you come to buy a Komatsu. 

A reputable dealer will be more than happy to show you around a machine and allow you the opportunity to fully check over the machine. Be cautious about buying any machine if the dealer shows signs they are uncomfortable. This will be your first warning sign. 

Buying construction machinery whether new or used is no cheap purchase. Just as you would not buy a car without fully checking it over, do not buy a digger without fully checking it over. 

Want to buy a Komatsu from us? Give us a call on: +44 (01634 779123 or email us!

All information correct as of: 28th July 2020. 

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