Repairing Your Own Power Tools

I have recently taken a few of my " broken" tools apart. Specifically a Milwaukee Sawzall that seemed to be dead, and a Dewalt cordless drill that was almost dead. The carbon brushes on the Dewalt looked pretty bad. If I change them will that improve the power of the drill? As for the sawzall, the brushes don't look that bad. What else should I be checking?
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Marmie wrote: > I have recently taken a few of my " broken" tools apart. Specifically > a Milwaukee Sawzall that seemed to be dead, and a Dewalt cordless drill > that was almost dead. The carbon brushes on the Dewalt looked pretty > bad. If I change them will that improve the power of the drill? > As for the sawzall, the brushes don't look that bad. What else should > I be checking? >
Brushes are considered a wearing item.
Frequent replacement is low cost insurance.
After that, switches and cords get the most abuse.
With any power hand tool, blow out the dust frequently.
Lew
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Usually on the Sawzall it is the switch that goes bad most often. I would start there and while you are at it put a new cord and brushes on. After that is the armature which is right around the price of a new saw (depending on model). Go to www.milwaukeetool.com to find a parts list.
Allen

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Marmie wrote:

troubleshoot from the wall plug out. get a multimeter- it's a great thing to have. check that power is getting to the switch- if not, find out why. check that power is getting out of the switch- if not, get a switch, or take the switch apart and see what's wrong inside.
seems to be dead isn't much information.....
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When you change the brushes, get out the magnifying glass and check out the commutator (what the brushes rub against). Worn out brushes can "smear" the metal on the commutator, causing the fields to short out. Under the magnifying glass, remove any metal that may appear to bridge across the spaces between the fields, being careful to not cut deep enough to score any wires between the fields. You also have to be careful to not leave any raised metal that might prematurely wear out the brushes or cause another bridge. It's a lot easier than it sounds. I've revived many old tools this way.
The most common cause for tool failure is that the tool is misused and overheated, causing the insulation on the windings or elsewhere to melt, creating a short in the system, and a lack of power or a complete malfunction of the tool. This is generally not repairable.
Variable speed controls are another weak point of many tools. They give up pretty quickly if overheated or even overused. Many are easily replaced if the tool is worth the cost.
Disclaimer: I'm not an electrician and don't recomment anybody follow any of these repair suggestions if they might be electrocuted or even slightly burned or singed, etc.
Happy Woodworking! (There should be a designated holiday).
GW
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