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Unimount problem

Discussion in 'Western Plows Discussion' started by jasonz, Feb 5, 2014.

  1. jasonz

    jasonz Senior Member
    Messages: 250

    on my 9' unimount my driver told me it was going up very slow and seemed to be drawing very heavy on the battery/truck. This is the first year I've owned this plow and I had a spare motor so I put it on. Did not seem to work much faster and after a few hours it would barely move up and when angling either left or right (can't remember now) it would be jerky but only in one direction. Then the plow would not raise at all. Fluid level was perfect when I swapped the motor.

    While the plow was raised I took the fill plug out and fluid shot out all over the place. I've never experienced that before don't know if I have a crappy valve or whats going on. Some help where to start would be appreciated. I should note that all the truck side wiring and motor relay are new. The plow was converted to three wire so only the power cable on the plow side is original.
     
  2. jasonz

    jasonz Senior Member
    Messages: 250

    Forgot to add that the alt is new and batteries tested perfect so I don't think its a power issue with the truck, and the fluid being under that much pressure with the motor not moving throws me for a loop.
     
  3. mishnick

    mishnick 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,243

    The reservoir cap on the Flowstat has a 5 lb pressure relief valve in it and Isarmatics are sealed so it is normal, and good, that there is some pressure when you open it, but it shouldn't blow all over the place unless it is overfull. The pressure prevents the reservoir from "breathing" and keeps moisture out.
    You didn't say if this is a Flowstat or an Isarmatic? Both are basically the same as far as valves and controls go though. When you say "three plug" you mean you have an isolation module and not relays right?
    High draw on two different motors and the fact that you have new wiring suggests that perhaps the valves are not opening correctly and the pump pressure just can't get to anything. Make sure there is nothing mechanical causing resistance to movement up and down too.
    If you do in deed have the isolation module it could be that your common negative that goes from all three coils to the motor ground is bad. This would mean that none of your valve are opening when they should.
    I am just shooting in the dark here. Tell us more detail and we can talk you through it.
     
    Last edited: Feb 5, 2014
  4. jasonz

    jasonz Senior Member
    Messages: 250

    3 wire with isomod
    Isarmatic
    pretty sure that common wire is good when I installed the new motor I used dielectric grease on the connections.
    and yeah the fluid shot out but the level was good when I had the motor off (yes the lift cylinder was down at the time.

    what would cause the jerkiness when angling one direction (right I think) but not the other direction?

    The plow would barely lift then I took the cap off and the fluid shot out and then it did go up again but then gets progressively slower after maybe 3-4 lifts.

    those are the only symptoms I can think of.
     
  5. mishnick

    mishnick 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,243

    Three plugs with an isolation module, so its been upgraded with all new wiring at one point both plow and truck side. Isarmatic came originally with two plug relay.
    You are referring to the plug on the top or reservoir by the motor bolt as the filler plug right? Not the allan key on the side....cus that's the level plug... had to ask....
    Jerking while moving would indicate S2 valve is not staying open, maybe a loose connection on the valve coil or bad controller / wiring between. But S2 is needed for left angle too so that makes no sense, it would jerk both ways. Check grill connections and try another controller if you can borrow one from a friend.
    You can use a screw driver to test the coils, just pull the cover off the valves and disconnect the motor cable plug and then connect a jumper wire from plow motor ground to truck battery negative post (this will stop the motor from spinning and the plow won't move and cut you in half) then get someone to operate the controls. Then hold the screw driver to the coils to see if there is magnetism. S1 should be on to drop, S3 on to raise, S2 for right angle and S2 & S3 together for left angle. S1 is front, S2 middle, S3 rear, closest to truck grill. Have a look at the mechanic's guide:
    http://library.westernplows.com/westernplows/pdffiles/21936_121704.pdf
    But that's only good for the hydraulics, for your electrical with isolation module look at this link http://library.westernplows.com/ddcommon/dd_pdf/pdfs/22373.07_110108_for_web.pdf Look at page 15 for your three plug straight blade with isolation module.
     
    Last edited: Feb 5, 2014
  6. jasonz

    jasonz Senior Member
    Messages: 250

    The coils wouldn't have to do with the jerkiness (more like a stuttering) would they. Would a stuck valve cause the pressure to build up like I described. Because after I took the fill cap off and the fluid shot out it did start to go up a little faster for a few times like i described.
     
  7. mishnick

    mishnick 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,243

    Loose connections on the coils could cause the shuttering.
     
  8. jasonz

    jasonz Senior Member
    Messages: 250

    should I pull the valves out to inspect them? What about the poppet valve, Ive heard of that giving people problems but where is it and is it serviceable?
     
  9. mishnick

    mishnick 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,243

    Inspecting the valves would not be a bad idea as long as you have the tools and skill to do it without making things worse... The first thing you need to do is read the mechanic's guide so you know what your getting yourself into. http://library.westernplows.com/westernplows/pdffiles/21936_121704.pdf This guide shows a blow up of all the parts, valves and orientation. Also has schematics both hydraulic and electrical (but yours is upgraded to iso module so electrical will be different). See page 15 on this link for your electrical http://library.westernplows.com/ddcommon/dd_pdf/pdfs/22373.07_110108_for_web.pdf At the back of the mechanic's guide is a troubleshooting section and a page that shows the poppet valve specifically.
    What perplexes me is the pressure build up you speak of. I know nothing that would do this. Your Isarmatic hydraulic unit is sealed with a small air space at the top when the blade is at the lower most point. The position of the angle rams has no effect on level because one ram fills with the same amount as the other ram empties so they negate each other. Only the lift ram changes the fluid level in the reservoir. When you top up the reservoir put the control in float and push the lift cylinder down to the bottom. Then you should be taking out the side plug (level plug) by the lift ram. Then you fill the fluid in through the top plug by the motor bolt only until fluid runs out the fill level hole. When you do it this way there is the perfect amount of air space in the top of the reservoir to allow for the level changes in fluid during use. When you recheck the level and put the lift ram down to the bottom again the fluid should go right back to where it was so the only pressure build up would be from expansion / contraction and or from barometric pressure changes in the atmosphere, neither of which should generate enough differential pressure to cause fluid to "shoot out all over the place).
     
    Last edited: Feb 8, 2014
  10. jasonz

    jasonz Senior Member
    Messages: 250

    The guy at my western dealer said the pressure wasn't unusual to him. But anyway I'm in the truck now the plow won't lift past the slack in the change and moves left to right very slow.

    All connections on the coils are good. Here is something I noticed. At all times when the controller is in the on position (not in float though) all the coils are magnetized not a lot but enough I can feel them pulling a screwdriver.
     
  11. jasonz

    jasonz Senior Member
    Messages: 250

    Also tried swapping controllers same thing

    They do get stronger when you cycle the plow functions
     
    Last edited: Feb 8, 2014
  12. mishnick

    mishnick 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,243

    You need to verify that there is no current flowing through the coils when the controller is not activated and plow is NOT in float. A bit of residual magnetism at the valves can be expected but should be very weak. Try feeling for a difference in magnetic strength before and after pulling one of the wires off the coil you are testing. If you feel a difference you have an electrical problem sending power to the coils when there should be none. But that points to the controller and you say you tried a different one??? Your valve coils have a common negative so to have a harness problem it would mean three wires, for three coils, are all shorted and getting a bit of + power.... not likely.
    If you could verify pump pressure just to know it's OK, would be nice but I don't expect you have a gauge in your pocket..
    Maybe you don't have enough power going to your coils? Can you put the plow in float and then put a voltmeter or test light across the two pins on the S1 coil? That's the one closest to the lift ram. Should show very close to 12 V or test light should be bright. If voltage is low you have a bad connection to the ground lug on the pump motor. That's where the common ground for the valves gets it's ground connection. Should be a black wire with orange tracer. I am really grasping here. You need to eliminate some things to continue otherwise we are just guessing.
     
  13. jasonz

    jasonz Senior Member
    Messages: 250

    Very weak with controller idle compared to magnetism when firing.

    Loosened the packing nut plow raises pretty good now. Not lightening fast but ok.

    Still jerky when angling left though
     
  14. jasonz

    jasonz Senior Member
    Messages: 250

    Forgot to mention that angling right is normal.
     
  15. jasonz

    jasonz Senior Member
    Messages: 250

    We've got 6-14" coming in an 18 hour storm. I need to figure this out. I looked at the mechanics guide but didn't really see anything about jerkiness or stuttering when angling left.
     
  16. mishnick

    mishnick 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,243

    If the pressure is on to get it fixed perhaps you need to take it to the dealer. You really haven't given us enough information to help you narrow it down.
    Maybe look at the guide and do some logical troubleshooting. Figure out which valves are active when it is shuttering and put a test light across them / it. Then see if the light flashes with the shutter. That would indicate electrical. Or put a pressure gauge on it and see if the needle jumps and if so which way, bursts of pressure of loss of pressure. The mind-mel doesn't work across the internet, we need information to help.
     
  17. dieselboy01

    dieselboy01 Senior Member
    Messages: 784

    Have you tried warming up the fluid? When my unimount was acting up it had gotten water in it and caused the plow to move very slow and wouldn't lift past the chain slack. Take a heat gun or small torch and warm up the reservoir, keep the heat moving so you don't crack the aluminum housing, and be careful around the wires and hoses.
     
  18. Glenn Lawn Care

    Glenn Lawn Care Senior Member
    Messages: 552

    Mine is doing the same thing when i hooked it up tonight, I'm gonna try to heat up the fluid tomorrow hoping it works.
     
  19. mishnick

    mishnick 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,243

    Putting plow in a warm shop overnight will tell u if it's a frozen water in fluid problem. If it works when warm but fails after getting cold then u need to do a fluid purge. Make sure it's warm when u change fluid so the water comes out. And refill with plow fluid not auto trans fluid. ATF gets too thick when it gets cold.
     
  20. jasonz

    jasonz Senior Member
    Messages: 250

    no time to fix it so I dropped it off at a repair shop, they did a full flush and service, I didn't pick it up but my driver said it was working fine, so hopefully that was it. The fluid being warm didn't seem to be the issue since it first stopped going up after 4 hours of plowing but maybe between the packing nut being too tight the fluid being ****** water in it and a clogged filter. Big storm forecasted tonight so I guess we will find out.

    Appreciate the help guys