Up S**T Creek Need paddle.: Tractor Engine Repair Rebuild  -- Tractor Maintenance Discussion Forum and Review Up S**T Creek Need paddle.: Tractor Engine Repair Rebuild -- Tractor Maintenance Discussion Forum

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 10-12-2002, 09:25 Post: 43740
MRETHICS



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 Up S**T Creek, Need paddle.

Ok Folks, for my first time, since being a memeber, I am asking for advice. Here is the dilema.

We currently have a 4400 in our shop. She is owned by a large swine farm in our area. They have been excellent customers.

This tractor, and the farm, were recent victoms of vandalism. The 4400 was driven into a lagoon holding liquid animal waste (Hog S**T). It was reported stolen a few weeks ago. It was found when the contents of the lagoon were pumped and applied to farmland nearby.

We have it in our shop. We've drained, flushed, and refilled all fluid reservours and plumbing, completely cleaned all residue from it's exterior and inspected for damage, and have made subsequent repairs. We replace the starter, and the alternator to name a few. Only one problem remains.

Here is my question. This is not the first incedent of this type we have dealt with. In each of the prior cases, the next two years were electrical system nightmares. Resulting in re-wireing the tractors completely. Hog Manure is very corrosive. While we spend hours and hours cleaning the connections, within months, problems occure.

Insurance companies will not pay to replace wireing that apears to be in good condition at the time. And it is a hassel to file a claim 1 year later.

We have sprayed WD-40, Silicon grease, Lithium grease, and a whole bunch of other things rangeing from spit to Oil of Olay, on the connections in the past. Nothing seams to work. Corrosion persists, until there is little left to do than replace each harness ( you can only clip them so many times before thay are too short), switch, or plug. Any thing that is not sealed.

It is my guess, that the high content of Ammonia in the animal waste is the culprit. Copper, Brass, Aluminium, The three metals that are prevalant in any electrical system, go south when in contact with the ammonia.

Is there anything that could be applied to these connections that will nutralize the effects of the ammonia?

It is my recolection that the ammonia is a base on the PH scale. So I guess we would need an acid? Or am I over simplifieng things?






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 10-12-2002, 09:37 Post: 43743
JerryGoucher



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 Up S**T Creek, Need paddle.

In the poultry business, we sometimes use acid is used to neutralize the ammonia on the house floors. I would think that a vinegar solution might do the trick. I don't know, but it would be worth a try and it is cheap.






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 10-12-2002, 09:52 Post: 43745
TomG

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 Up S**T Creek, Need paddle.

Soda water is what comes to mind. There are CO2 units used in bars and restaurants that make the stuff in quantity. Soda water wouldn’t leave a residual.

I'm not sure the idea actually is adequate but the strategy is neutralizing ammonia, which is a weak base, with a weak acid. If the bases and acids aren’t the same chemical strength, the resulting salts also will be corrosive.

Ammonia tends to not like water as well as other acid making compounds (you can smell it) and I'm not sure if it would come to a PH that isn't corrosive if just exposed to air and maybe heat. I'm also not certain if it's feasible to get a weak acid solution everywhere needed--plenty of uncertainties here. There probably is somebody here who's Chemistry is more recent than mine.

Another approach might be talking to the insurance adjuster to say that wiring has been part of the damage in past cases and it should be replaced as part of the original claim. If the insurance company balks, you could ask them to identify a solution that they would cover and then write a letter to both the insurance company and your customer indicating that past experience indicated that damage likely occurred and that the covered solution may not be adequate. No surprises for anybody that way.






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 10-12-2002, 10:30 Post: 43747
Art White



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 Up S**T Creek, Need paddle.

When we get into these deals, can't say they have been just like yours, normally just water from a pond. We would spec all wiring and switches in our estimate. The insureance companies do question our thoughts on it but they have had cars with flood damage and they normally total them if they have been submerged at all.






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 10-12-2002, 11:10 Post: 43750
MRETHICS



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 Up S**T Creek, Need paddle.

Thanks for the prompt response Tom and Jerry (No pun intended), I've just e-mailed the adjuster and phoned the customer, explaining the situation, and asking for suggestions. I also included your suggestions for their review.

Won't know much for a few days now.

Dig this tidbit of knowledge also. The customer's ins. company rented them a replacement from our store. At first, the tractor was considered stolen, but the sherriff suspected it would be found nearby. The ins adjuster approoved a rental from us based on that fact. The missing tractor is less than 1 year old. They had replacement coverage, but within the policy, there was a certain amount of time that must lapse, before a check was to be written. This left my customer out in the cold, he needs that tractor several hours a day. It was only with some haggleing, and the involvement of his local agent, that the adjuster approved the rental.

Just another example of the importance of dealing with local, reputable people.

Again, thanks for the help guys! I'll keep you posted.






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 10-12-2002, 11:19 Post: 43751
MRETHICS



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 Up S**T Creek, Need paddle.

opps....sorry Art, you slipped one in on me while I was typeing. I've never been around car claims for submerged damage. I never thought to counter the adjuster's negative response to our re-wireing part of the estimate with the info you just gave me..

Thanks to you also.






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 10-12-2002, 11:32 Post: 43752
Peters

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 Up S**T Creek, Need paddle.

When we had a motor or outboard submersed in salt water the first course of action was to submerse the motor in fresh water. We would leave it in clean fresh water for a week or so to dilute the salt.
After this we would remove the electrics and dry them out and fill the block with recycled oil (inexpensive oil). We could normally get starters and alternators to work.
If you have an base base problem you can neutralize it or dilute it. Baking Soda can be used to neutralize it or vinegar. The cheapest source of baking soda that I know of is SAMS large boxes, even cheaper than the pool supply locally.






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 10-13-2002, 06:15 Post: 43769
TomG

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 Up S**T Creek, Need paddle.

MrE: Hope it all works out. Sounds like Art and I are coming from the same place. It wouldn't be good to get caught in the middle of what amounts to a potential argument between your customer and his insurance company. It seems like a good course to limit your role to saying what your experience in similar cases has been to both parties. If guy is a good customer to you, he probably also is to the insurance agent and the agent is to the underwriter so there probably will be agreement eventually.

An issue in the wiring other than corrosion is the long-term effect on insulation. Many substances deteriorate insulation and reduce its life expectancy. The insulation material probably conforms to a SAE spec, and the question is whether the spec includes exposure to ammonia.

Regarding the Tom and Jerry joke. I used to play congas for a singer/song writer named Gerry. We used to campaign his songs around town mostly as a duo. That's the way the music economics work. At a certain level, most players don't work for free and you actually don't want sidemen playing your tunes that aren't busy with paying work. Bands have names and duos usually don't, so emcees regularly asked how to introduce us. Gerry says 'My name or something. Just don't introduce us as Tom and Jerry or even Jerry and Tom.'






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 10-13-2002, 07:43 Post: 43773
TomG

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 Up S**T Creek, Need paddle.

Peters: I'm curious what a base base problem is. I know that you're the chemist here.






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 10-13-2002, 08:49 Post: 43774
Peters

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 Up S**T Creek, Need paddle.

Tom just my typos. I was debating where the main problem would be urea acid of the ammonia a base.






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Discussion Boards > Active Subjects > Messages as Posted > Tractor Engine Repair Rebuild Forum

Thread 43740 Filter by Poster:
Art White 3 | Billy 1 | Bob in NY 1 | DavesTractor 1 | JerryGoucher 1 | karmakanic 1 | MRETHICS 5 | Murf 1 | Peters 2 | TomG 4 |




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