Tag: blower wheel

I’ve seen a lot of guys recently who reach for the motor puller tool first thing when attempting to remove a blower motor from a wheel/fan blade. Motor puller tools are an awesome backup tool when needed, but that shouldn’t be the go-to method of removing a motor.

 

The main issue with using a motor puller for every single motor is its tendency to bulge out the shaft. Motor pullers work by clamping down on a hub and then twisting a small shaft against the motor shaft in order to push/pull the motor/wheel away from each other. Sometimes, when technicians don’t sand down a shaft and spray the area with WD-40 or other water displacement lubricants, the shaft will get stuck and a tremendous amount of force is required to crank the motor puller shaft against the shaft of the motor. These opposing forces can significantly bulge the motor shaft. If the technician is successful in removing the motor that way, they often find it more difficult to get the motor shaft back inside the bore of the wheel. 

My hope is every technician reading this understands that the cardinal rule of removing a motor is to never use any of the following methods:

  • Use a hammer/wrench/blunt object to beat the shaft out of the assembly
  • Use channel locks of set screws
  • Use channel locks on the motor shaft
  • Over tighten the set screw

Any of the above-mentioned sins can result in expensive problems.

Please note the two things that must be completed before using a motor puller: sanding the shaft and lubrication. Guess what…

 

That’s all you need to do to remove a shaft!

  1. Sand the motor shaft until shiny and smooth.
  2. Spray with water displacement lubricant
  3. Loosen the set screw (but don’t remove it. They are easy to lose)
  4. (Optional) Take an adjustable wrench and gently turn the shaft independently of the wheel
  5. (Optional) Slightly push the wheel down the shaft to sand the portion of the shaft that was previously unreachable, which may have a lip that needs to be sanded down.
  6. Gravity is your friend. Let the motor fall out of the assembly. A shake or two may be required.

 

Voila! Those are steps a technician needs to do before using a motor puller, yet 90% of the time, those steps are all that’s needed to do the job. 

 

One extra tip…Blow off the sandpaper/rust debris before applying the lubricant, and don’t apply lubricant before you sand the shaft. The debris can get stuck and make things even more difficult, and sandpaper that is saturated in WD-40 doesn’t do much good.

 

For a video on this method, we shared a post by Brad Hicks earlier this year of him demonstrating how it’s done!

The Surefire Way to Get a Blower Wheel Off

 

– Kaleb

I’ve always opposed the practice of grabbing a hub puller as the first method of removing a blower. This video by Brad Hicks with HVAC in SC on YouTube demonstrates the exact method I use to safely remove a blower wheel without damaging anything. Thanks Brad!


 

Transcript

This is going to be on removing blower wheels from blower motors I see a lot of guys that will just get a fancy puller they won’t do any prep work on the motor shaft they’ll just drop their puller on there and try to remove it. Sometimes it works sometimes it gets everything bound up to where you have to replace the blower wheel.
Basically, what I do is just loosen the set screw,  you can see how rusty this one is right here but loosen the setscrew and force the wheel on the hub down farther first.  You can see now we have some clean metal and then I just take a couple minutes to just with a piece of Emery cloth or sandpaper just clean this shaft up really really good. Take a couple extra minutes to prep that shaft once that’s nice and clean you just grab something some sort of lubricant rust breaker wd-40 in this case spray a little bit on there and nine times out of ten this wheel will come right off no problems at all without any puller. I do hope that helps thanks for watching.
— Brad
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