Common Snowplow Repairs and Their Warning Signs

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The weather doesn’t wait for you to be ready to deal with it. If it’s going to snow, it’s going to snow, so if you have to be prepared to tackle your snow removal at any time, and that means keeping your snowplow in good condition! A malfunctioning or damaged snowplow can throw you into a difficult situation if you don’t have the problem fixed before the next blizzard hits, creating stress for you and hazards for everyone that needs to drive on the roads that won’t get cleared while your plow is out of commission. To help you avoid this, here are some common snowplow problems that might affect you, and the warning signs to look out for!

Plow Won’t Move

If your plow isn’t raising or lowering as it should and is stuck in either the up or down position, it can be a sign of a few different issues with your snowplow, either in your hydraulic system or your electrical. Here are a few troubleshooting tips to narrow down the source of the issue.

  • Do a SCAT test (you can usually find instructions in your plow mechanic’s drive, or a machine repair shop can help you). If it comes back normal and the motor relay and coils are all working properly, you know that the issue is with your hydraulics
    • A hydraulic leak should be easy to spot– there might even be spraying fluid. You can fix this by simply replacing the hose if you have extras on hand. If not, you’ll need to visit your local repair or machine shop.
    • A valve might be clogged or stuck. This can be trickier to identify, although you might be able to actually see something stuck in a cartridge valve. This isn’t a DIY type of repair– it’ll eat up a lot of your time, besides being messy and difficult. You’ll need to visit a repair shop like Levan to get this issue fixed.
  • If the SCAT test comes back abnormal, the problem is in the electrical system and you need to find where the connection is short circuiting. First, check that there isn’t any snow or ice impacting the electrical connections before you start.
    • Check your plow’s battery and look for cut or exposed wires that are shorting out.
    • Look for small amounts of corrosion that could be interfering.
    • Take a look at the fuses or “fail-safes” in the charging system and plow connectors– they will burn out as a safety mechanism to prevent electrical damage if needed.
    • Check your solenoids to see if any are failing.
    • Test the control and change it for a spare if it’s faulty.

Overheating

An overheating truck is a hassle to deal with, sometimes even causing you to need to pull over and kill time while you wait for things to cool down. Here are some things you can do to help.

  • Adjust the blade position. Different heights and angles might help to at least improve your airflow and slow down how fast your truck overheats.
  • Watch your speed, trying to stay under 40 or 50 mph when you can. This will help to put less stress on your truck and reduce the possibility of overheating.
  • Check your radiator and clutch fan. Your radiator might not be functioning at full capacity due to a leak or standard wear and tear, and might need to be replaced, and the same goes for your clutch fan.

Other Issues

For any other issues, whether you’re having a hard time diagnosing the problem or it’s a difficult one to fix, let Levan Machine and Truck Equipment help you. We provide snowplow repairs and maintenance that can help to keep you out of sticky situations this winter. Contact us today to discuss your issue further!

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