Corn Downforce Study

Precision Planting DeltaForce on Case IH 1200 Series in Nebraska farm planting

Key Points

  • Objective: To evaluate the yield impact of implementing various levels of downforce on crop yield.
  • Potential for Losses: When we look at average data year-over-year, we have seen improper downforce settings lead to average yield losses up to 14.3 Bu/A.
  • Stay in Control: By planting with the DeltaForce system, farmers can react and take control to ensure proper downforce and eliminate major yield and economic losses.
  • ROI: Our data shows that DeltaForce could have a potential ROI of nearly $100,000 across 5 years on 800 acres using a 16-row planter.

Planter row unit downforce is a common agronomic issue that often goes unaddressed. This is widely because the amount of downforce required can vary by row, the area in your field, and how much weight is on your planter.

Downforce that is too light will cause shallow planting depths and place the seed in dry soil. Downforce that is too heavy can lead to furrow-smearing and sidewall compaction.

Over the time period of 2018-2023, light downforce has resulted in average yield losses of -14.3 Bu/A compared to automated control with a DeltaForce system. Excess downforce resulted in losses as well, at an average of -5.8 Bu/A.

Hydraulic cylinders like DeltaForce can help you measure and maintain proper downforce throughout your entire field. This leads to optimal yield and optimal profitability as well as eliminating yield and economic losses.

See vivid metrics in real-time with a 20|20 monitor in the cab

In this multi-year study, we are exploring the specific potential for yield loss when we use improper downforce settings during planting.

Corn Downforce Study Results

In-Depth Study Videos

InsidePTI S4•E03

"All Wrong" Planter Study ‣ Corn

InsidePTI S3•E05

All Wrong ‣ Corn

InsidePTI S2•E17

Downforce ‣ Corn

InsidePTI S1•E03


Study Details 

Study data collected 2018-2023 at the PTI Farm in Pontiac, IL.

Planting DateVaried By YearRotationCAB (2023), CAC
Row Width30"Population36K
Corn Prices

2023 - $5.31

2022 - $6.00

2021 - $5.00

2020 - $3.75

2019 - $3.67

2018 - $3.50


2023 - DKC 66-17RIB

2022 - DK 66-17

2021 - AgriGold 639-70

2020 - AgriGold 641-54VT2RIB

2019 - Pioneer DKC 54-38

2018 - Pioneer 1366AMXT

Related Tags

CornPlantersDownforce ControlInsidePTI


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