How to Fix a Frozen Front End Loader, Skid Steer or Other Snow Removal & Plow Equipment
Whether you own big loaders like this or smaller loaders like this, it’s not a matter of if they will freeze up, but it’s a matter of when. Today I’m going to teach you how to thaw out the frozen loader. I’m going to teach you how to keep your loaders running all winter long without having problems. I’m also going to cover the early warning signs that a loader is starting to freeze up, allowing you to catch it and keep it operational before it becomes problematic.
So let’s get started. You are probably here in this video because your loader is frozen up and you don’t know what to do. The answer is simple, your fuel lines are frozen, and you have to thaw out those fuel lines. Under optimal conditions you’ll have a torpedo heater handy. You put that right where your fuel filter is because nine times out of ten, that is where the problems occur. Here is what you need to do, you need to locate where your fuel filter is on your machine. Then you’ve got to thaw the water out of the fuel lines. These things do a fabulous job in a very short while.
You’re also going to have to have an extra set of fuel filters on hand. If you don’t have them right now, carry them with you, at least two fuel filters. You’re going to put the heat right in the area of the fuel filter, because that is likely the pinch point where things are freezing up. You’re going to need to find that out about your individual machine. All these machines are different whether it’s a John Deer, a Cat or Bobcat it doesn’t matter. You’ve got to locate that fuel filter and you’ve got to start thawing that out.
You’re going to pop that fuel filter off and you’re going to put a brand new fuel filter in place. You also have the option of tenting that machine. If you happen to have an old tarp, put that tarp over the engine compartment of the machine. That’s going to contain that heat. You don’t have to get elaborate with this, you just have to contain the heat right in the area. Do something similar to this to keep the wind from wicking it away. They say wind chill doesn’t affect machinery, but that is an absolute lie. It’s called convection cooling; the wind will actually pull and draw the heat off from the machine. That is our enemy in this case; we’ve got to contain that heat to thaw out those frozen fuel lines.
So we put the torpedo heater in place and we thawed everything out. That should give the machine enough fuel to get it to fire. You need to then add 911 into the fuel system. It’s just an additive; it’s the additive that I choose to use. If you guys have a different additive I do want to hear about it. We have found 911, across the board to be the best and most effective additive for thawing frozen lines out. Those two things alone should pop off your machine. Now that you’ve got your frozen machine finally running again, let’s keep it from freezing up.
First thing that we’re going to be doing is, we’re going to be going to the gas station and double-checking the mixture on the fuel. Don’t trust them, it doesn’t matter what they say, it matters if your equipment is running or not. So I always add extra number one diesel fuel, which is a pure winter blend, into the existing winter blend of the diesel fuel. On top of that, I always add some anti-gel into my fuel and I also add 911 right into the main mixture. It’s not the best for the engines, but it’s best to keep the equipment running in extreme temperatures.
Today it’s a balmy negative 19 degrees Celsius out, which means my equipment doesn’t like me now. We’ve got your equipment running; we know how to keep it running by adding extra number one into the system. What is the early warning sign that you’re having a problem with your equipment in the first place? Your equipment sounds like its coughing, then it’s starting to freeze up. If it’s starting to spin and sputter, it’s starting to freeze up. Those are the signs that it’s starving for fuel. The first signs of that happening, you add more 911 into the system. It’s as simple as that, are you getting the clue? Carry 911 with you everywhere you go. That is your lifeline in these situations.
It’s not a perfect world, oh my gosh, who could believe that? You don’t have a torpedo heater, what do you do? You have a pickup truck or the exhaust of any piece of equipment that happens to be running. Simply take a four-inch pipe if you have that and you’re hooking it up to the exhaust of the equipment. Then you put it right into the engine compartment of the machine that you want to run. We got a 4 inch solid pipe, that’s what you need. If you’ve got a steel pipe, that’s even better yet.
You simply slide it up to the exhaust of your truck. You can see all that heat is going to be directed right where I want it; right into the machine. It is going to warm it up, then you go inside the truck and throttle it down because that’s going to pour the exhaust out that much faster. It’s about thawing out this machine. You want to get as much heat as possible pumped into the area where it’s frozen. Once you get those lines thawed out, that 911 is going to activate and it’s going to save the day.
You have a big dump truck; I’ve used this truck to thaw out frozen equipment when I didn’t have a torpedo handy. I placed it into the exhaust and then directed all that warm exhaust right on my frozen fuel line. A big truck like this works amazing to thaw out a machine. You don’t have to have a dump truck handy.
It’s not a matter of if your machine will freeze up, it’s a matter of when your machine freezes up. You need to be ready, keep your extra fuel filters on hand and have your diesel 911 in stock. If you have a different additive that you guys use, I want to know about it because I want to keep all of our equipment running. When it’s running, it’s making us money. When it’s frozen, it’s costing us so I want to hear from you guys what tips and what tricks do you guys use? Put it in the comments down below.