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Too much grease in 13 pin?

Discussion in 'Boss Plows Discussion' started by k1768, Feb 15, 2014.

  1. k1768

    k1768 Senior Member
    from NJ
    Messages: 556

    Plow in question is a mid 2000's (around 2005) RT3 7.5' Straight Blade Standard Duty on an 07 Ram 2500. 2 seasons ago I spliced in a new plow side 13pin connector due to the common broken pin.

    The problem: occasionally the plug gets hung up on a pile and lossens enough to break connection. Normally I just reseat it and I'm fine. So Thursday it happened a few times then was fine. Including a 80 mile round trip on turnpike to help a friend. Parked truck went out about 6 hours later and after first push into pile blade would not lift. When it happens the lights remain functional and I can hear the relay click but plow will not move in any direction. Also when this happens controller will go from red indicating float mode to green. Sometimes just reseating it would be fine other times still no go.

    First I tried to clean out the older grease with small flateblade driver and lots of WD-40. Then added a little fresh grease. That left me with same results. Then I removed as much of the grease as I could and it was fine for a while. But failed again after about half hour. This time I tucked the harness in by the hitch pin to minimize movement. After that I finished the next 6 hours or so with no issues.

    The question: did I just have too much grease preventing a good connection? Or are the contacts wearing and the plugs need to be replaced? I notice when connected there's about a 1/8" gap between the male and female ends. But it's always been that way. I also know I need to relocate the plugs in the spring so they are less likely to get hung up. Need to decide if I should replace the harnesses also. From what I can tell the pins look good and it doesn't seem like either side should be able to squeeze closed or open wide creating a bad connection. But minimizing the movement seemed to help.

    One last clue: sometimes when it stopped working I would just keep going and it would start working again. What I mean is push into a pile and blade will not lift. Back up a few hundred feet pushing controller button the whole time and eventually blade would lift. Push into pile and no lift, back up and eventually lift and repeat.

    Sorry for long post. Thanks for reading and any suggestions.
  2. Mr.Markus

    Mr.Markus PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,779

    You can spread the pins with a small pick tool or screw driver to make a better connection. Or if its simply the rubber plug is loose, use some zip ties to pull it tight and cut them off when you need to disconnect.
  3. SnowGuy73

    SnowGuy73 PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 24,870

    Yup, I had to do the same thing with my blizzard plows.
  4. Snow Commandor

    Snow Commandor Senior Member
    from 07666
    Messages: 443

    I'm willing to bet its not the pins in the plug but a bad wire in the harnes thats giving u trouble. u said u spliced a replacement harnes in right? double check your but connections & make sure u don't have a wire comming loose. sounds like one of the controller wires is giving u trouble.
  5. k1768

    k1768 Senior Member
    from NJ
    Messages: 556

    It didn't look like the pins were split and could be spread out. But the conditions didn't lend for the best inspection, I know the male pins are hollow. I'm also concerned about weakening the integrity of the metal and it snapping. It seemed like the rubber was a tight connection, will double check that as well. I had also considered the zip tie fix.

    As I think about it more I'm wondering if there are globs of grease in bottom of female side that I need to dig out.

    Will go out and make further/more detailed inspection in a bit.

  6. k1768

    k1768 Senior Member
    from NJ
    Messages: 556

    SC I had considered a bad splice as well but thinking that less probable. I repair damaged wire harnesses on a regular basis as part of my full time job and am super anal about getting a solid connection. I also did the splice a good 12" from from the plug to minimize fatigue at the splice. But I will absolutely double check it if further cleaning and possible tweaking of the pins does not resolve the issue.

    Right now I'm trying to determine if current status is questionable enough to justify messing with it in the rain. Part of me says it ran 6 hours flawlessly let it ride until I can work on it in dry conditions.

  7. alcoman50

    alcoman50 Senior Member
    Messages: 168

    When conditions allow I would suggest some good quick dry contact cleaner. Make sure to get everything good and clean and then regrease.
  8. grandview

    grandview PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 14,609

    Get it as tight of a connection as you can they put a zip tie on it.
  9. Snow Commandor

    Snow Commandor Senior Member
    from 07666
    Messages: 443

    Ditto, Alco! use a can of electric parts cleaner to clean the connector good then regrease.
  10. k1768

    k1768 Senior Member
    from NJ
    Messages: 556

    Well on further inspection (during daylight) I discovered ice in the base of the male side. Scraped that out and the female side as well. Saturated both ends in electronics cleaner and put fresh thin film of dielectric back on. I'm thinking water leaked in along the top of the connection, so I put a bead of grease along there as well in hopes of preventing a repeat.

    Gave as real life of a test as I could by scraping the 1/2" slush from my drive and pushed a few piles a little further back and it ran flawlessly, as Boss' generally do wesport

    Thanks again all.
  11. mrgarciainc

    mrgarciainc Junior Member
    from Chicago
    Messages: 28

    I had problems with mine corroding and had to replace the 13 pin connector twice already because of broken pins. Now I have it well greased all the time. But now I get it as tight as I can, smear grease around the gap then electrical tape around the gap and around both connectors tightly to hold it in place. Every time I disconnect it always looks very clean.