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Old 01-24-2010, 08:54 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Plow hydraulics stop working

When I moved into this house, the landlord supplied us with a Ram 2500 4x4 with a plow on it to clear the driveway. It seems to work for a while, each time. after a while, the hydraulics quit on me, usually when the plow is down.. Are the lines freezing? Its between -20 and +20 degrees, doesn't seem to matter.

suggestions?
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Old 01-24-2010, 09:01 AM   #2 (permalink)
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You didn't mention what you are working on: Meyers, western, fischer, etc...

But I would start with a drain and refill of the pump AND the cylinders.

If you can get it inside and get some heat on the system (a torpedo heater about 5 feet away seems to help.) it will thaw the ice and let the valves work.

You will probably do well to flush it completely twice...

Also, if it's a Meyers; make sure to use plow pump oil, NOT ATF... I don't care what others say, if it were supposed to run on ATF it would come from Meyers that way.

Good luck.
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Old 01-24-2010, 12:02 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Water can become emmusified into the oil. Over time, it finds its way in past the seals etc. I flush out and refill with new oil in the fall, before every snow season. It doesn't take much to cause the valves to stick.

Like the freeak said, get the system warmed up real good somehow and if the plow magically works properly again, change out all the oil, and replace with quality plow oil.
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Old 01-24-2010, 12:14 PM   #4 (permalink)
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When the plow quits working, can you hear the hydraulic pump coming on? If not it's an electrical problem- usually the switch. Does the plow have power angle? If so, does the angle work but not the lift?
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Old 01-24-2010, 01:44 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mtnbkrmatt View Post
When I moved into this house, the landlord supplied us with a Ram 2500 4x4 with a plow on it to clear the driveway. It seems to work for a while, each time. after a while, the hydraulics quit on me, usually when the plow is down.. Are the lines freezing? Its between -20 and +20 degrees, doesn't seem to matter.

suggestions?
Gunnison, CO, huh? Don't you mean, its between -45 and +15?

My family lives there and I went to school at Western State. Gunny is one cold SOB. It's cool your landlord hooked it up with a plow truck. Hopefully you get it working well.

Good luck,
Charlie
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Old 01-24-2010, 01:50 PM   #6 (permalink)
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If it were water/ice in the hydraulic it would most likely work the opposite of what you're saying. Poor/no function when cold and once warmed it would start working better. I would be more inclined to think that it is an electrical problem.

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Old 01-24-2010, 03:01 PM   #7 (permalink)
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betting the pump is worn out.
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Old 01-25-2010, 01:10 PM   #8 (permalink)
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thanks guys. Gonna pull it into the garage, thaw it out, and flush it a couple times
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Old 01-25-2010, 01:40 PM   #9 (permalink)
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take it to a place that does plows and have them put a pressure gauge on it.
Still bet it's the pump
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Old 01-25-2010, 01:44 PM   #10 (permalink)
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take it to a place that does plows and have them put a pressure gauge on it.
Still bet it's the pump
I agree. I do not think it would be freezeing up after it has worked for a while. Gert a gauge AND a flow meter on it and get the factory specs. I would bet the pump is laying down once the fluid warms up a bit. JJ
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Old 01-25-2010, 01:44 PM   #11 (permalink)
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I'd bet its the user.
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Old 01-25-2010, 02:25 PM   #12 (permalink)
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I agree. I do not think it would be freezeing up after it has worked for a while. Gert a gauge AND a flow meter on it and get the factory specs. I would bet the pump is laying down once the fluid warms up a bit. JJ
I would still say ice is possible. It happens with ours when they get a little water in them. They work at first until a chunk of ice gets into a valve and then it stops it.
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Old 01-25-2010, 03:04 PM   #13 (permalink)
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if it was ice, it would eventually start working better again as it warms up.
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Old 02-13-2010, 07:25 PM   #14 (permalink)
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if it was ice, it would eventually start working better again as it warms up.
What? warms up? what is this that you speak of?? I dont think its been warmer than 30degrees since early November.

I think I've narrowed it down to the pump, gotta get that pressure guage on it still
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Old 02-13-2010, 09:56 PM   #15 (permalink)
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if its a western, clean the filter. Mine gets plugged up with gunk on occasion. Usually when we get in the >0 range. Since we are usually as cold as you.
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Old 02-14-2010, 06:19 AM   #16 (permalink)
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our old Meyer seems to do this time to time. usually when it stops you've got to tap on the solenoids, some times the motor a little bit. ive seen quite a few plows start working again after some slight tapping on them.

think about it. its cold and your sitting in a warm truck and the plow stops. the quickest and easiest option to fix it is to hit it with something.
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Old 02-14-2010, 06:34 AM   #17 (permalink)
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The quickest and easiest thing to start with is a flush and to pull the valves and wash them with parts cleaner or kerosene (assuming the motor is running). Next, check that the solenoids have magnatism (power them up and put a screwdriver in the middle). If all of this fails, start looking at your pump.

I only use plow oil (fawk atf).

I keep 15 plows up and plowing commercially, and plow myself, if you have any more questions, you can PM me, as i rarely get to log on this time of year.
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Old 02-14-2010, 07:18 AM   #18 (permalink)
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What? warms up? what is this that you speak of?? I dont think its been warmer than 30degrees since early November.

I think I've narrowed it down to the pump, gotta get that pressure guage on it still
not the air temp... the oil temp as the pump/engine runs.
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Old 02-16-2010, 06:32 PM   #19 (permalink)
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Well, smack me in the face. Did some inverstergationing tonight. Cannot hear the pump electric motor running at all. did some poking with my multimeter, this and that.

Lets talk about the "motor relay". As I said, moving the controller gets no response from the system. When I jump the two main cables on the relay, the pump takes off. I expected it to, but does this tell me anything? Bad relay, or controller, maybe?
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Old 02-16-2010, 06:43 PM   #20 (permalink)
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Its a western plow, by the way.

and this is what the wiring looks like(for the most part)
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Old 02-16-2010, 07:06 PM   #21 (permalink)
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why do they need to make this shit so complicated? why the fuck does a snowplow need a controller? i work for a municipality with a large fleet of 3/4ton-1-ton plow trucks, all with modern snowplows. they have more electrical probelms than you can shake a stick at. it could be my fulltime job from nov to april just repairing shitty snowplow electronics. my belt driven fisher plow NEVER has any problems, and my simple 2-switch meyers doesnt have near the issues these newer plows have.

i'd be sure your joystick ot whatever trips the plow motor to come on has power. mine has a fuse. it also need a ground from somewhere. what type of controller do you have: 2 switches, little joystick?
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Old 02-16-2010, 07:35 PM   #22 (permalink)
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it has a joystick and a indicatior light on top, and a on/off switch on the side. where might I find this fuse? inside the controller?
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