Snow Plow Maintenance Main Image

Snow - it comes around at the same time every year, leaving roads, parking lots, and driveways covered in its path. It can be a hassle in the morning when you’re trying to leave for work or school. But snow plows keep our roads, parking lots, and driveways clear. Combined with salting, snow plowing is the most effective way to clear a slippery, snowy area quickly. With the right maintenance, a snow plow could last you for years.

Image of Snow Plows

There are two main types of snow plows; Straight plows and V-plows.

Visual Inspection

To start preparing your plow for the winter, the first thing you should do is make a visual inspection. If there are any clear signs of damage that could potentially interrupt the normal use of your plow, get it fixed before the season starts.

Trip Springs & Eye Bolts

Next, tighten the trip springs and adjust the eye bolts. Without proper adjustment, the moldboard (blade) could be damaged during use. Refer to your owner’s manual to get your plow’s specific tightening instructions.

Lubrication, Cutting Edge & Runners

In order to keep a smooth cut, make sure to grease moving parts (such as the pivot and cotter pins) and check the cutting edge. If the cutting edge is worn past 4 inches, get it replaced, as further use can damage the moldboard. Also, inspect the runners and ensure that they are cutting at ½ inch above the ground when ready to plow. If they are wearing through, get them replaced immediately. Continue to check the wear and tear of the edges and runners throughout the season.

Power Unit Maintenance

To ensure that your plow maintains good power angling, monitor all of the hoses, couplers, and rams. Make sure that there is no damage; such as rust, leaks, or cuts. Failure with the hydraulic system will result in the plow being completely dysfunctional. Before the season starts, make checking your hydraulic fluid a habit. Specific fluid levels and instructions for your pump/power unit can be found in the owner’s manual, as every plow is different.

Electrical

Your plow’s electrical system should also be reviewed before use. Replace or repair any melted, damaged, or corroded wiring, harnesses, and connectors. Dielectric grease can be added to any electrical connections to help prevent corrosion. Loose wires can be very hazardous, so make sure all wires are safe, secure, and away from any hot engine parts.

Review Owner’s Manual

If you have questions or any other concerns with the upkeep of your snow plow, refer to your owner’s manual, as there will be more detailed instructions for troubleshooting your specific plow model.

Checklist

  • Visual inspection
  • Tighten trip springs
  • Adjust eyebolts
  • Grease moving parts
  • Check cutting edge and runners/shoes
  • Monitor hoses, couplers, and rams
  • Check for rust, leaks, and cuts in hydraulic
  • Change oil/hydraulic fluid
  • Inspect wiring and electrical parts/add dielectric grease
  • Secure all wires
  • Read owner’s manual