A tractor is usually one of if not the most important machines on any farm. Today, it is not uncommon for a new tractor to cost €100,000. Meeting tougher emissions regulations and ever-evolving sophistication and, to be fair, greater comfort too, has propelled tractor prices skywards over the last decade or two. It could be argued that reliability and productivity has increased too.

The complexity of meeting emissions regulations, improving comfort and productivity on modern tractors means that it is so important to carry out basic checks and maintenance. I don’t mean full-scale servicing, which, because of the level of sophistication utilised on today’s tractors, means that servicing is often better left to those who are trained to do it. I mean the basic stuff: lifting up the bonnet and having a look under there, checking fluid levels, spotting leaks or clogged radiators.