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Dealing with flooded equipment

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Forum topic by TheWoodNerd posted 09-14-2017 04:04 PM 634 views 0 times favorited 19 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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TheWoodNerd

291 posts in 2949 days


09-14-2017 04:04 PM

Hurricane Irma left my shop with about two feet of water in it. Luckily, most stuff that could be damaged was stored higher than that.

However, the motors for my planer, jointer, bandsaw, etc, spent about 24 hours submerged in water.

Has anyone dealt with this before and care to share any tips on what needs to be done before applying power?

-- The Wood Nerd -- http://www.thewoodnerd.com


19 replies so far

View Nubsnstubs's profile

Nubsnstubs

1164 posts in 1487 days


#1 posted 09-14-2017 04:21 PM

I would think if your motors were “Drip Proof”, open them to replace the bearings and then let them dry out before reassembly. It might be the solution for all the motors. I wouldn’t even think about starting them until they are dry…... Jerry (in Tucson)

-- Jerry (in Tucson) www.woodturnerstools.com

View Tideline77's profile

Tideline77

100 posts in 529 days


#2 posted 09-14-2017 04:25 PM

sorry your having to deal with this, what a bummer

is it covered on your homeowners insurance ?

was it salt water ?

View jawqn87's profile

jawqn87

26 posts in 2356 days


#3 posted 09-14-2017 04:26 PM

Let them dry out for a long time. We are recovering from Hurricane HArvey and I have many friends who’s air conditioner was submerged for 2-10 days. They were dried out completely and than they were running again. Important to note that in both cases, insurance totaled the air conditioner and they will be buying new. Might see if your insurance can help in these cases.

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TheWoodNerd

291 posts in 2949 days


#4 posted 09-14-2017 04:27 PM

Homeowners doesn’t cover flooding, at least not in this part of the country. We do have National Flood Insurance, but that can take a really long time. If I can get my stuff up and running again, that would be vastly preferable.

-- The Wood Nerd -- http://www.thewoodnerd.com

View Loren's profile

Loren

9307 posts in 3405 days


#5 posted 09-14-2017 04:29 PM

You’ll need to remove dirt from the floodwater.
This can be done fly flushing components
with clean water if the flood was a freshwater
flood. If you don’t want to do that, disassemble
as much as you can and thoroughly clean with
brushes, compressed air, mineral spirits to
get the grime off. Then you’ll have to dry
everything thoroughly.

View TheFridge's profile

TheFridge

7767 posts in 1243 days


#6 posted 09-14-2017 05:08 PM

I’ve had to deal with a bunch of flooded stuff.

Pull the motors and open them up to dry. I’ve opened up motors a year after they’ve flooded and some still had water in it.

Replace all flooded bearings. All it takes is a little of that fine grit in the grease to kill it.

Starters need to be disassembled and sprayed with contact cleaner.

You can spray motors and whatnot with a hose, just make sure they dry thoroughly before reassembly.

-- Shooting down the walls of heartache. Bang bang. I am. The warrior.

View papadan's profile

papadan

3584 posts in 3126 days


#7 posted 09-14-2017 06:23 PM

Loren and Fridge have the right ideas. Disassemble, clean, dry, lubricate, reassemble.

-- Artificial intelligence is no match for natural stupidity!

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TheFridge

7767 posts in 1243 days


#8 posted 09-14-2017 06:49 PM

My buddy got 3’ in his shop last august. He wanted to take the wait and see approach.

Every single bearing that got water was replaced eventually. We went to use his lathe last month. A full year after. Bearings locked up.

3/4 of the starters on his equipment had to be pulled apart and cleaned and/or repaired.

-- Shooting down the walls of heartache. Bang bang. I am. The warrior.

View Carloz's profile

Carloz

722 posts in 349 days


#9 posted 09-14-2017 07:08 PM

How old is your equipment? The insulation pads between windings and between winding and the core nowdays is plastic that withstand water well. Older meterials were asbestos paper or paper soaked with resins that will be permanently damaged by water, also water likely brought all kind of deposits between the coils and it is impossible clean it completely. Those deposits will damage the wire insulation once the vibration starts. So file your federal insurance claim even if you manage to start thr equipment.

View Fred Hargis's profile

Fred Hargis

4617 posts in 2251 days


#10 posted 09-14-2017 07:29 PM


Homeowners doesn t cover flooding, at least not in this part of the country. We do have National Flood Insurance, but that can take a really long time. If I can get my stuff up and running again, that would be vastly preferable.

- TheWoodNerd

I congratulate you on that, the news is reporting that 80% of the folks din’t have that coverage. Even so, will it be 100% replacement? BTW, the disassemble, clean, dry and lube (and reassemble) is the approach I’d take. I sshould add, while I have taken wet motors apart, I’ve never been flooded…so I’m not speaking from actual experience.

-- Our village hasn't lost it's idiot, he was elected to congress.

View scrubs's profile

scrubs

30 posts in 18 days


#11 posted 09-14-2017 08:51 PM

As others have said, disassemble, clean, lube. Replace your bearings now.

I’m a New Orleans native and have had my fair share of flooded shops! I’ve been lucky enough to only lose one motor to flood, the rest were salvageable thru cleaning, new bearings etc. To be fair the one that I couldn’t get to run right was really old and never was great to begin with, so I just replaced it.

I highly suggest just buying new bearings now, don’t try and save the ones that are in there. Not worth the hassle really.

-- It all seems like a good idea at some point...

View GR8HUNTER's profile

GR8HUNTER

2644 posts in 470 days


#12 posted 09-14-2017 10:51 PM

maybe an electric motor service place could rebuild them for you :<))

-- Tony Reinholds,Pa. REMEMBER TO ALWAYS HAVE FUN

View AlaskaGuy's profile

AlaskaGuy

3251 posts in 2066 days


#13 posted 09-15-2017 02:37 AM



maybe an electric motor service place could rebuild them for you :<))

- GR8HUNTER

Probably can find one that not swamped with work.

-- Alaskan's for Global warming!

View bbasiaga's profile

bbasiaga

958 posts in 1752 days


#14 posted 09-15-2017 03:01 PM


maybe an electric motor service place could rebuild them for you :<))

- GR8HUNTER
Probably can find one that not swamped with work.

- AlaskaGuy

Swamped with work….I see what you did there!

-- Part of engineering is to know when to put your calculator down and pick up your tools.

View builtinbkyn's profile (online now)

builtinbkyn

1758 posts in 698 days


#15 posted 09-15-2017 03:07 PM

Not sure it will work in this instance, but there are cleaners for electronic equipment that come in an aerosol. It’s still a lot of work as you would need to disassemble the motors and switches, but it should remove grim, grit and oxidation that accumulated. Sorry you’re having to deal with this.

-- Bill, Yo!......in Brooklyn :)

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