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The Surefire Way to Get a Blower Wheel Off
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!
What's going on, guys? Here's another 60-second tech tip. 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 set screw and force the wheel on the hub down farther. 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. Like I said, 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. So, that's what I do. Hope that helps. Thanks for watching.
I’ve done that very same thing for about 20 years 25 years now. I Was preparing one for a friend which literally would not come off. I ended up having to use several tools along with a puller. 6 hours later we got it loose. The blower wheel was deformed it had been such a fight. Easily the worst one I have had all these years. In looking for a replacement I pulled 3 different ones off in 15 minutes or so.
I have also been doing it that way for the past 30 years too, but here is another way. Just like you did, loosen the stud, oil the shaft and spin the wheel around the shaft to get oil around it, tap wheel towards motor an 1/4″, spin it again, now cut the shaft off flush with the hub using a battery powered rotary tool, like a die grinder, use a 3″ cutting wheel and cut the rusty shaft off right at the hub. Now you have all clean shaft and will often not even need a puller. Usually a gentle tap on the end of the motor shaft will cause it to fall right out of the wheel. Note : Never beat on the motor shaft, you will just mushroom the end and then you will really struggle to get it off.
The biggest thing is sanding down the old set screw marks and adding some oil or wd40 to the shaft, alternatively is try to upsell a new wheel and be done with it.