Slush overloading Snowblowers possibly temperature related

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  • Updated 3 years ago
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It seems that a majority of the issues occurring (including my own) is the snow blowers not responding after a few uses in SLUSH. That being said has anyone tries bringing in the blowers inside to bring up to room temperature? I personally brought mine into my boiler room, nice and warm, and an hour later the not working issues disappeared.  I 100% agree that it's unacceptable that a SNOW blower can't handle the cold, but at least if warming them up fixes the issue, ego can note it and maybe fix a fault in the temperature sensors. In my case it simply flashed amber lights stating overload, yet it had zero resistance so it didn't make sense. Again I brought it inside, left it in my boiler room for an hour or so and it came back to life. Now i'm not sure if it's temperature related or maybe the heat dried up a component that got wet inside that shouldn't have, but either way as a technician my job is to try different solutions until I find one that works, not complain about them until someone else fixes it. Let's work together maybe we can find a solution that helps everyone instead of slamming ego with calls and emails for the same issue. 
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Deleted

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Posted 3 years ago

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Erik

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Its -17 here, my garage is uninsulated. I'll go put my batteries in in a little while and see if it works.
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Deleted

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I'd bring the whole blower in if warming up the batteries alone doesn't do the trick...dont forget the towels or a tarp!
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mpshaffer1

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So, I have seen the issues on the blower not restarting after being used once or twice. I don't know if it helps but, I use my EGO handheld blower and blow off all loose snow after sweeping the snow off with a broom. Then when it take it in to my non-heated detached garage I have tipped up the snow blower on it's nose to allow the dripping snow melt off the unit. I was afraid that the water might be leaching in to the unit fouling the motor? So far no problems.....
On a side note, I got a good look at the scraper bar while in this position. Mine, after three uses, is beat-up and broken in spots.I have no rocks or gravel just concrete with expansion joints. I think that this plastic scraper is a poor design. My catches at every joint in the concrete. EGO should send out metal replacement scraper bars that can be attached to the bottom. My gas blower never had this problem and it should not break within a  few uses.
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TheAtomTwister

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Well said... It seems to me that it may be water disrupting circuit boards based on Jacob's image and then not evaporating because of the cold. Just waterproof the circuit boards and see of the problem goes away. Make sure you do not use some that will tear up the circuit boards when thermal expansion comes into play.
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Jacob

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The circuit boards are waterproof. Read all my findings please before you reference my findings thanks :)
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TheAtomTwister

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Wait, I thought that photo showed bare circuit boards... ?
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Deleted

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They have spray on clear waterproof coating...industry standard
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TheAtomTwister

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I can't really tell if there is a clear layer of something on those boards, bit I thought they were exposed. BTW, what camera are you using?
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TheAtomTwister

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I see now. my bad.
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good ol' conformal spray. I can't see the ego engineers not using it if they didn't epoxy coat the board like they did on the batteries, which as previously stated It probably would of been much better unless it would interfere with temperature sensors.... only they know why they went one route and not the other...
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Deleted

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In my defense I only go by what Jacob stated when he opened it. Im too chicken to open mine and risk losing my ability to return to HD if I were to void the warranty....so props!
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Jacob

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It's like 0.25" thick too. Really thick
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Jacob

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The camera is on my Samsung note 4. It's All I got.
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TheAtomTwister

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Then I'm left at a loss. 

I've opened a 480CFM blower that stopped working, and really you have a choice, let EGO service it under warranty, or void the warranty and service it yourself. Worst case scenario is you ruin the internals and have to rebuild them or replace the tool. I'm going to completely redo the internals of one of my 80V blowers pretty soon and am also considering redoing the internals of a 530CFM EGO.
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Deleted

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Maybe one of you brainiacs can see if the capacitors that are being used are being damaged by the cold. I found this on the interweb "The normal working range for most capacitors is -30°C to +125°C with nominal voltage ratings given for a Working Temperature of no more than +70°C especially for the plastic capacitor types.
Generally for electrolytic capacitors and especially aluminium electrolytic capacitor, at high temperatures (over +85°C the liquids within the electrolyte can be lost to evaporation, and the body of the capacitor (especially the small sizes) may become deformed due to the internal pressure and leak outright. Also, electrolytic capacitors can not be used at low temperatures, below about -10°C, as the electrolyte jelly freezes."
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Jacob

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Interesting. Look at the pics and cross reference. I'll try later tonight.
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Deleted

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That'd be awesome...ill see what i can find from your pictures.... ego better start paying us for putting in the hours...it's pretty much becoming a part time job lol
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TheAtomTwister

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lololol. I'll bet we could sell them prototypes. 
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Jacob

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Lol. Sell them.... I want funding to develop them. I'd make an ego powered log splitter. Takes 12 batteries.
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TheAtomTwister

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That works too. As far as log splitters go, just use a chunk of iron on rails and some Theraband Gold, use a lever-gear system to crank it back, then just pull a trigger to let it go, and you have an auto-super ax. JoergSprave made his Rubberaulic Press, use something like that.
(Edited)
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Deleted

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By the way i wasn't being sarcastic you guys are leaps and bounds smarter than me lol I mow lawns not rip apart electronics....
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TheAtomTwister

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I mow lawns too. TheAtomTwister's Electric Lawn Service, it is, but it hasn't been launched yet. 
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Deleted

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Well a quick google search based solely on the capacitor in the picture TAT reposted, 100v 47uF....anddddd aluminium electrolytic capacitor is what i get.... if that's correct AND the working temperatures from that article coincide....that means it's possible the capacitors simply can't do their job at the -17 degree Celsius/ 1.4 degree Fahrenheit temps some people are using them in. Matter of fact anybody who needs to clear snow in temps below the stated -10 celcius could most likely expect the unit to stop working. I'm hoping i'm wrong because that's a biggg issue if they need to redesign the boards on these machines. I guess we'll find out tomorrow.... 
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DJDDay

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Perhaps this is why my unit continues to operate fine (knocks on wood LOL)?  I'm storing it inside a heated house (basement) when not in use, and when I bring it outside I start using it pretty fast.  Once it's in use, I would imagine the power draw keeps the capacitors operating fine, no matter how cold it is.
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Deleted

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Seems legit, most issues are either out of box or after prolonged exposure to the cold. Neither one acceptable...but that's just the trend i'm noticing...
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Wish I could see the rest of the markings on the capacitors, if it's rated from -40 to 105 degrees then that hypothesis could be put to rest...
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Jacob

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All capacitors say 105 CF on them
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well there's go that theory....next idea??
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I still think it's a valid lead... if somehow they are rated for high temp but not the low -40 or -55 temps we might still be on to something... especially following the trend that we're seeing with the complaints
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Jacob

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https://www.google.com/url?sa=t&sourc...

Here is the spec sheet for that cap. 100v Caps are rated to -40c( fun fact. That's also -40 F)
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Deleted

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Good stuff I was looking for samsung capacitors lol
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DJDDay

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Yeah, I couldn't imagine EGO making an engineering blunder like choosing capacitors that can't handle sub-zero temps for a snow blower.  Good to see the actual specs were located for the caps though!

OK, so... NEXT!
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Erik

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Jacob since you have it apart, can you verify where the upper plastic housing meets the metal housing behind the auger, would snow getting in between the two make it into the inside of the machine?
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Erik

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Never trust anyone selling anything wearing a denim dress shirt.
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TheAtomTwister

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I've never tried Flex Seal, but if it works, I'm for it.
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Jacob

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There isn't a seal around the plastic anywhere. The gray platic buttstock up to the metal. It is not sealed at all anywhere. Must not need to be..

I call it... passive cooking using snow to cool the heat sinks :)
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Erik

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Haha Jacob I meant here inside the auger housing/behind it. Looks like stuffs already getting into the unit. Snow/twigs/debris
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I thought that too... With all the energy that motor is drawing and especially under heavy load i can see them focusing on maintaining air flow and yes maybe even relying on some snow to cool down the components but something about the random shut offs and leaving them in the cold after being used a few times has to correlate...
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Erik

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Spark, side vents in housing, small fan, anything but snow ha. Even with electronic parts coated I don't feel good about any snow in my unit, salt+water wrecks things.
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DJDDay

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According to what's been posted by a few people on EGO's Facebook, this is not a product-wide issue nor a design flaw.  Everything is water resistant and built to operate in snow, be around moisture, and operate in sub-zero temps.

Someone is claiming a Home Depot manager told them the issue is a loose power terminal that's inaccessible inside the unit.  Whether or not that's accurate, I don't know.
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Erik

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I don't see anything in EGOs facebook. Unless I'm missing it.
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DJDDay

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@erik - it's in the Antarctica "commercial" Pop Up Shop thread with the HD employees being featured:

(Edited)
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Erik

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Got ya. Maybe the snowblowers with problems were built on a Monday haha. Jacobs wouldn't start here in Mn but mine had no problems all weekend with temps reaching -24.
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Jacob

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That is inaccurate. I checked all power connections. It's more likely a circuit board failure. He was assuming a lose wire. The events mine went through on failure indicate it was a progressive failure over a few seconds. So this tells me an electronic component failed. I think.
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Deleted

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Now that it's Monday I can't wait to hear what Ego has to say after a weekend full of calls emails and comments on the forum. Poor guys and  gals lol
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Jacob

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We won't receive a response today. Jen is out until tomorrow.
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She probably saw the messages and emails and called out...I don't blame her....

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