How to Use a Farm Tractor


The cockpit of a farm tractor generally resembles the one in a car or truck. A tractor has a steering wheel, gauges, levers and one or two pedals on the floor. The front of the tractor usually has a bucket for moving soil, while the back has a hydraulically controlled section for attaching implements such as plowing discs, mowers and sprayers.

  • Climb into the seat from the side with the step and insert the key into the keyhole to start the tractor.

  • Pull gently on the throttle lever, located near the keyhole, to warm up the diesel engine. The throttle lever is connected to the gas pedal and acts like a cruise control.

  • Put your foot on the clutch, shift the gear stick into first gear and slowly move the tractor forward. The gear stick is one of two shift levers with knobs coming out of the floor in front of you, usually with markings labeled "1" through "4," as well as an "R" to reverse the tractor. Shifting gears on a tractor is identical to shifting gears in a car.

  • Shift the other shift lever from position "1" to "3" to decrease towing power and increase speed. This stick will control the power distributed to the wheels, much like those in a four-wheel-drive truck.

  • Pull or push on the lever to the right or left of the seat to adjust the height of the front bucket.

  • Pull or push on the second lever to adjust the tilt on the bucket.

  • Pull or push on the third lever, usually located on the opposite side of the seat, to adjust the rear hydraulic system. This lever controls the distance between the attachment and the ground. You will want the attachment to be close to the ground when using the plowing discs and higher for mowing or towing a trailer using a hitch.

Tips & Warnings

  • Allow a few minutes for the diesel engine to warm up before operating the tractor to avoid stalling the engine.

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  • Photo Credit Jupiterimages/ Images
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