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Sunday, February 1, 2009

Unless you know with certainty the problem of your sweeper or scrubber, I use “fault-logic” to diagnose the machine. Especially with hydraulic systems on some of these machines. They can be very complicated to the average Joe. And we will test this theory of “fault-logic” in this article.

All of the sweeper/scrubber manufacturers use this trouble shooting technique. Tennant, Advance, American Lincoln, Factory Cat and Power Boss use this technique. Even some of the manufacturers of components of the equipment such as Ford (who provides their engines in some cases) use this as well.

I received an e-mail regarding a Tennant Sweeper 385. He stated that it would not operate in either direction. He further stated that had little experience on this type of equipment. He asked if I could help?

(#1) Check all the linkage on the main pump.
Defective: Repair or Replace.

(#2) Check hydraulic oil level in reservoir. If below level, fill to level.

(#3) Check system hydraulic pressure. This can only be done by someone with experience and familiar with the testing gauges, etc.

(#4) Check the relief valve, there are separate instructions for this.

(#5) Inspect the inlet screen or the hydraulic inlet filter. If clogged, replace.

(#6) Inspect the load valve. This valve is activated when moving, loading or unloading the machine. This valve allows the machine to roll with the hydraulics being off.

(#7) Inspect the wheel motor. This motor is bolted to or attached to the steer wheel. It is also called the drive motor.
Defective: Repair or Replace.

(#8) Inspect Propelling “pump motor.”
Defective: Repair or Replace.

I am not proposing that anyone is capable of this work. As my friend that e-mailed me. However, this gives you an insight as to the logic of “fault-logic.” And each number has its own set of instructions such as #4. Check the relief valve. From my many years of experience, usually the problem is discovered in steps 1 through 3 in most cases. So, you see it is possible for the average Joe to figure it out!

So, let’s try another problem. We’ll do a less complicated problem. Let’s say the sweeper will not sweep. Okay, a model SW88 Power Boss Sweeper.

(#1) Check the Hoppers and make sure it is not full.
Solution: Empty the hopper.

(#2) Panel Filters Clogged.
Solution: Replace Panel Filter

(#3) Main brush not in down position.

(#4) Main brush is worn and needs replaced.

(#5) Skirts are worn or have tears to allow air to enter.
Solution: Replace all the skirts.

(#6) Hydraulic Vac Motor not working.
Solution: Repair or Replace.

In this scenario, usually #2 is the solution. So, you see, as long as you follow procedure you too, the average Joe, can find solution to these problems. Just use logic, “Fault-Logic” that is.

Please do not hesitate to contact me by e-mail at or call at 800/346-2319.

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