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Flooded Equipment

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louosten

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#1
Guys,
I need some advice. I had some equipment in a storage unit in New Bern, NC that was flooded during hurricane Florence. Two items had electric motos that were under about a foot of brackish water. I think I can restore the rusty iron & steel. Who knows the secret formula for motor restoration? Thanks in advance!
Lou O.
 

dlane

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#2
Wd 40 May help ?.
 

RJSakowski

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#3
Dry it out as quickly as possible. If it was muddy water, I think I would do a rinse with clean water and possibly a final rinse with distilled water. I have had good results with drying wet electronic and electrical equipment. What you don't want to do is power it up while it is still wet.
 

Karl_T

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#4
The bearings will very likely fail in short order. Bit of labor but bearings are not that expensive.
 

wa5cab

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#5
What I would do ASAP is to remove any motors or switches from the machines, remove any cover or inspection plates, and if present any bearing covers. Then immerse the motors & etc. in either kerosene or @2 or #1 Diesel. Manually rotate the armature a few times after immersing, and let set for a day or two while you attend to the non-electrical components. Remove the electrical components from the liquid and let drip dry. Then blow them out with LP air. A shop vac hosed backwards would be a good choice. Lube the bearings and while the covers are off, note the bearing part numbers. Run electrical leakage tests with a Megger or at least a high-range ohm meter. When everything checks out OK, re-mount the motors, wire them up but do not install the covers or belts yet. Test run each one intermittently for a while. If they survived and run OK, button them up and you are back in business.
 

markba633csi

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#6
If it wasn't really salty water you should be ok, just dry 'em out good and check for bad bearings- replace as needed
mark
 

lordbeezer

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#7
All good advise above..a better idea might be load those crusty machines up and drop them off in wake forest..I'll take care of them..seriously, good luck..
 

Bi11Hudson

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#8
Whether it was salt water, or just plain dirty from a storm, doesn't really matter. Treat it as worst case, like coastal seawater near a shipping terminal. First off, keep it under clean water until you can put the time in it. Tap water will work, grocery store distilled water is better. But not so better as to justify the cost in a storm area. Just keep it under water, whatever you can get. Rain water if nothing else. As long as air can't get to anything, it won't rust much.

When you start, one piece at a time, dry it with compressed air. No more that 10-15 PSI. A vacuum cleaner was a good call there. Soak it down with WD-40. It can be bought in gallon cans. BTW, the WD in the name is for water displacent. Soak it good, leave it submersed for a day or two if you can. Then again blow it out, 10-15 PSI. Let it stand for several hours, on end if possible.

Baking is the preferred method. But the dipping and baking process will cost more than a new motor for the smaller sizes. Find a spray varnish (such as Grainger) and heat in an oven (just under 212 degrees) to bake the water out and the varnish in. Glyptol is a brand name from my past. I don't know if it is still sold, but is a starting point. You want motor varnish, not painter's varnish. There is a difference.

Once it is dry and varnished, check it with a meggar for greater than a megohm, every coil to ground. If it's a single phase motor, replace the capacitor. Don't bother checking it. Just replace it. Same for the bearings. They may be good, may run for years. Or they may last a couple of hours. Just replace 'em.

This description is from my deep past, on a ship at sea. I think I covered every point, but can't be certain. I have repaired diesel engines since, on boats. But again, a long time ago. And diesels don't have any electrical parts, except the starter. Been a mill electrician for years since. Just trying to remember it all. In the mills, we replaced the motor and let the motor shop worry about the old one. Sorry... ...

Bill Hudson​
 
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NortonDommi

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#9
I've had good luck in cleaning out motors that have been under water or had paper wasps nest in them by stripping down and after digging out the worst of the muck treat it like an engine. Blowing some degreaser all over/through then washing out with a high pressure hose or small low pressure water blaster,(home handyman type),then blowing out with compressed air then a blast with Methylated Spirits in a wash gun and a final blow out. The Meths absorbs water. Clean, repack or replace bearing as necessary. Sometimes I've had to remove the field coils to remove rust or repair damaged insulation. Makes it easier to check the wire enamel too. If it has a centrifugal starter switch that usually needs a dismantle and clean up too. Electric motor are pretty robust and as long as they are cleaned inside and no insulation is damaged there usually no problem. Clean up and coate of paint.
 

Eddyde

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#10
Spray all electrical components with throughly and heavily with WD-40, as soon as possible after immersion, while still wet. Take stuff apart as much as needed to get WD-40 everywhere. I saved most of the equipment in my friends restaurant, that got 56" of seawater during Hurricane Sandy, using that technique.
 

BaronJ

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#11
Hi Guys,

I agree with the above comments.

In general strip it down to the field windings, a good rinse in fresh water, then bake in a warm oven, until dry. Megger the windings to carcass. Then spray the windings with varnish. Re assemble, and test.

Depending upon the size of the motor the bearings might be PB, so carefully check the rotor for any rust on bearing surfaces. Ball races may or may not have water in them. If they are shielded the grease should have protected them, but they still might contain water. YMMV
 

silence dogood

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#12
All the above advise is good. One test for your motors that was not mentioned is the ring test on the coils. You may have to go to a electric motor shop to do this. It's equivalent to tapping a grind stone. If it rings it's good except this is an electrical ring. Just one winding can be shorted even though the ohm meter says good and your motor ain't going to run good.
 

jdedmon91

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#13
All good advise above..a better idea might be load those crusty machines up and drop them off in wake forest..I'll take care of them..seriously, good luck..
I laugh on that one. However if Wake Forest is not convenient than drop them over at Dallas.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 
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