How To Change The Control Pattern On An Excavator

As an excavator operator, you’re well aware of the importance of having the right control pattern to efficiently and safely operate your equipment. With various control patterns available, it’s essential to know how to change these settings to suit your needs and preferences.

In this article, we’ll take you through the process of changing the control pattern on an excavator, as well as offering some helpful tips for adapting to a new control setup. Before diving into the details, it’s crucial to understand the different excavator control patterns and the safety precautions you need to take before making any changes.

We’ll guide you on how to locate the pattern changer valve, walk you through the steps to change the control pattern, and provide some useful advice on adapting to your new setup. So, strap in and get ready to master the art of changing the control pattern on your excavator!

Understanding Excavator Control Patterns

Before diving into changing control patterns, it’s essential to have a solid grasp of the various excavator control patterns and how they impact your machine’s operation. Familiarizing yourself with different control patterns is a crucial aspect of excavator maintenance. By understanding the optimal control settings, you’ll be able to operate your machine more efficiently and safely, ultimately increasing productivity and reducing the risk of accidents.

The two most common control patterns for excavators are the ISO (SAE) and the BHL (John Deere) patterns. In the ISO pattern, the left joystick controls the swing and the boom, while the right joystick controls the stick and the bucket. On the other hand, the BHL pattern has the left joystick controlling the swing and the stick, while the right joystick manages the boom and the bucket.

Knowing these patterns, their differences, and how they affect your excavator’s functionality will help you make informed decisions on which control pattern is best suited for your specific needs and the tasks at hand.

Safety Precautions Before Making Changes

It’s crucial to take necessary safety precautions prior to making any adjustments on your heavy equipment. Before changing the control pattern on an excavator, it’s essential to ensure proper excavator maintenance and operator training.

Maintaining your excavator in top working condition not only prolongs its lifespan but also reduces the risk of accidents during operation. Proper training for the operator is vital in understanding the function of each control, as well as how to safely operate the machine during pattern changes.

When preparing to change the control pattern, always start by parking the excavator on a flat, stable surface, and turn off the engine. Double-check that all hydraulic systems are depressurized and that the equipment is in a safe state for maintenance.

Inform other workers on the job site of your intention to make adjustments, and never attempt to change the control pattern while the excavator is in use. By taking these safety precautions, you can help minimize the risk of injury or damage to your equipment during the control pattern change process.

Locate the Pattern Changer Valve

Before you can change the control pattern on an excavator, you’ll need to locate the pattern changer valve. Identifying the valve location is essential for easy access and making necessary adjustments.

Once you’ve found it, accessing the valve will enable you to switch between control patterns effortlessly.

Identifying the valve location

To switch up the control pattern on your excavator, you’ll first need to pinpoint the valve location. This can be a bit tricky if you’re not familiar with your machine’s inner workings. Valve maintenance and excavator customization require a keen understanding of your equipment’s layout, so it’s essential to consult your operator’s manual or a qualified technician to assist you in locating the pattern changer valve.

The valve is typically found near the hydraulic control valve block or behind the operator’s seat. Keep in mind that the exact location may vary depending on your excavator’s make and model.

Once you’ve identified the valve location, make sure to follow all safety precautions and shut down the excavator before attempting any adjustments. This includes turning off the engine, lowering any attachments to the ground, and engaging the safety lock lever.

With the proper tools and knowledge, you can easily change your excavator’s control pattern to better suit your preferences and improve your overall operating experience.

Accessing the valve

Once you’ve found the valve, you’ll need to carefully access it, ensuring all safety measures are in place and the machine is shut down properly. Before working on the excavator, make sure the engine is off, the key is removed, and the machine is parked on a level surface with the bucket and arm resting on the ground. It’s also a good idea to lock out or tag out the machine to prevent any accidental startup while you’re working on it.

Remember, valve maintenance and excavator customization should always be done with safety as your top priority.

To access the valve, you’ll typically need to remove the cover or panel that’s protecting it. This may require the use of tools such as wrenches, screwdrivers, or a socket set. Be sure to keep track of any bolts, screws, or other hardware you remove during this process, as you’ll need to reinstall them later.

Once the valve is exposed, take note of its current configuration before making any adjustments. This way, you can easily return the excavator to its original control pattern if needed.

With the valve accessible, you’re now ready to change the control pattern on your excavator.

Changing the Control Pattern

Ready to switch things up on your excavator and enhance your operating experience? Let’s dive into changing the control pattern!

There are numerous benefits to adjusting the control pattern, such as improved efficiency, increased comfort, and reduced operator fatigue. By exploring control customization options, you can tailor your excavator’s controls to better suit your preferences. This ultimately makes your work day more productive and enjoyable.

To change the control pattern on your excavator, locate the control pattern selector valve. This is typically found in the cab or near the hydraulic pump. Make sure the machine is turned off and the hydraulic pressure is relieved before proceeding.

Next, switch the valve to the desired control pattern. This is usually indicated by letters or symbols (e.g. ISO, SAE, or A/B). Consult your excavator’s manual for specific instructions on how to select the appropriate pattern and any necessary tools or precautions.

Once the new pattern is selected, start the machine and test the controls to ensure they respond as expected. With your excavator’s controls now customized to your liking, you’ll be ready to tackle any job with greater ease and efficiency.

Tips for Adapting to a New Control Pattern

Adapting to a new operating configuration on your heavy machinery can be a smooth process if you employ some useful tips and strategies. First and foremost, give yourself ample time to practice and familiarize yourself with the new control pattern.

Start with simple tasks and gradually work your way up to more complex operations. Additionally, take advantage of adapting techniques such as setting up a controlled environment to test your skills, using online resources for guidance, and seeking assistance from experienced operators.

Remember, patience is key when adapting to any new system, so don’t be too hard on yourself if it takes time to become proficient. Customization benefits are another aspect to consider when adapting to a new control pattern.

Customize the machine’s settings to your preferences, such as adjusting the sensitivity of the controls or modifying the response time. This will help you feel more comfortable with the new control pattern, as it will be tailored to your specific needs and preferences.

Moreover, don’t hesitate to ask for assistance from your colleagues or supervisors, as they might have valuable insights and advice to help you adapt more quickly. Ultimately, with the right mindset, practice, and customization, you’ll be able to master the new control pattern and reap the benefits of increased efficiency and productivity.


In conclusion, you now know how to change the control pattern on your excavator. Always remember to follow safety precautions and take your time when making adjustments.

By locating the pattern changer valve and following the outlined steps, you’ll have a smooth transition to your preferred control setup. Don’t forget that adapting to a new control pattern may take some practice.

Be patient with yourself and keep practicing to improve your skills and enhance your excavator operating experience.

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