End Of Season Snow Plow Maintenance
Check for structural damage –
The first thing you will always want to do first is check for any cracks in the welds on your A-frame, Quadrant, Moldboard, and Lift frame. These parts take the brunt of the abuse that plowing can cause and they are expensive to replace.
Salt-X or Salt Away –
Salt is the enemy! Whatever you do make sure you clean all the salt off your equipment. There are numerous products on the market but two that I have heard highly recommended are Salt-X or Salt Away. Both will remove salt from virtually any surface and leaves a protective coating that preserves and extends surface life. They fight Rust, Corrosion & Salt Water…Perfect for snow removal equipment!
Repaint your plow –
Once you have checked the welds and removed all the salt now it is time to paint. If your plow hasn’t seen much action just some touchup paint should get you by, but if you have neglected your plow or it was a rough year in your area you may want to sandblast it first then repaint the entire blade. We recommend using the OEM paint because it has special chemicals that protect the plow from rust and can prevent snow from sticking to the blade.
Change your oil –
Typically changing you plow fluid is a pre-season maintenance task, however if you’ve been running ATF fluid or some other alternative to get by in a pinch now is the time to fix it. Letting non-recommended fluid sit in your pump all summer can help deteriorate the seals and gaskets in your pump. ATF fluid is 11 times as thicker than plow fluid at -20 degrees.
Grease your electrical –
Quite possibly the most frustrating problem to have is an electrical problem. Wiring is expensive and it’s a hassle to rewire, especially for lack of proper maintenance. Put a generous amount of dielectric grease on your electrical plugs and always use the dust cover to keep out any impurities.
Check your wiring –
Check all your wiring, especially your ground wiring. Having a bad ground is one of the most common reasons for your plow to stop working and it’s an easy check.
Grease your bearings –
The bearings on your salter are the lifeblood of any salt spreader. Without properly functioning bearings your salter will literally do nothing. No matter if you have a chain driven or auger driven spreader the bearings on it NEED to be greased before storage. The same advice applies to the bearings on your spinner assembly. Take a generous amount of grease and coat all your bearings.
Rebuild your pump –
After a while all plows need maintenance, but completely rebuilding your pump is not a job for everyone, however if your pump has been periodically freezing and/or just giving you problems in general it might be time to rebuild. A new pump/powerpack can run $1000 easy, but to rebuild is much less expensive. It comes down to that old saying, “Do you have more time or more money”.
Change your cutting edges –
Similar to changing your plow fluid, changing your cutting edges is usually a pre-season activity not post-season. Depending on how much you have plowed, it might be time to replace, either way it’s a good idea to at least inspect cutting edges and make a judgement call.
Check you pins –
Pivot pin, cylinders pins, hinge pins, cotter pins, etc. Your plow has all types of pins and they should all be checked. If your plow wobbles or shakes there is most likely something wrong with your pins or the holes they rest in. Any pins that look worn should be replaced.
Store your plow or plow parka–
If you have the luxury to store your equipment in a safe, dry place then do so. If you do not have storage capabilities then you can use a plow parka. Initially made for Fisher plows we have found that these handy coverings can be used on several types of plows to keep them out of the elements. In addition, it’s a good idea to get a plowcart or dolly wheels so you can easily move your plow around if need be.
Grease your conveyor chain –
The conveyor chain in your salt spreader must be maintained or you will have some real fun next time you want to use the spreader. Removing an old, rusty conveyor chain is hard and time consuming, but with a few cans of Fluid film your conveyor chain with stay greased all summer.
Register your plow –
Maybe you planned to register your plow, it got all busy, and you forgot, hey, it happens, but now is the time to register your plow. You usually get several benefits from registering your plow, for example registering your Meyer plow will extend your warranty from the standard 3 years to 5 years.