In my last post about Kwikee steps,I told about a repair kit for Kwikee step motors, that has since been discontinued. But… all is not lost- a quick trip to the local auto parts store let me fix a set of steps for a fraction of the cost of replacing the motor.
In fact, the parts cost a bit under $9, and saved having to buy an over $100 (if you buy a Kwikee brand motor), or around $60 (if you buy one from an auto parts store).
If your Kwikee steps simply get jammed, and you are getting power to them (you can hear the box click when you open or close the door, and the under step light is going on and off), quite often it is just these small plastic parts that are bad- not the whole motor. The symptoms of failure for these parts are that the step will get stuck in the extended or retracted position, yet the step is still getting power.
Let’s take a look at how to replace them…
These parts are actually 1/2 of the kit that used to be available from Kincor, the gear isn’t included, but most times the gear itself is fine. Note that the new Kwikee steps use an “Integrated Motor and Linkage assembly, so if it doesn’t look like these pictures, this fix will not work, but it’s fine for most.
You start by removing the motor- MAKE CERTAIN THE STEP IS UNPLUGGED BEFORE WORKING ON IT!!!– IT IS POSSIBLE FOR THE STEP TO BE IN A BIND, AND ACTIVATE WHEN YOU REMOVE THE BIND- something that can be dangerous to fingers and hands. There is always a 4 way plug within a foot of the step- unplug this.
Remove these screws and disconnect the leads, and the motor should pull straight down. By aware that there is a small pin in the end of the gear which might stay in the gear housing, or might come out.
Once the motor is off of the step, take it to your workbench and remove the plate covering the internal gears- most I have run in to take a torx bit to remove this screw.
After removing the cover, you will see the output gear with a larger gear adapter and the plastic gear set with the plastic gear plugs. The adapter simply lifts off, then to remove the output gear you will snap off a small “C” clip from the shaft (being careful not to lose it). The output gear will lift off, exposing the plugs in their triangular cutout.
(click on any image for a larger view)
Replacing the plugs is a simple matter, though the replacements will be tight. I put a bit of grease to hold them in place while I start the output gear, then press the whole thing back together.
Now it is simply a matter of reversing the order- replace the “C” clip, cover plate, output adapter, reattach the motor to the step gearbox, hook the motor wires back to the control box, and last- making certain your hands and fingers are clear, hook the 4 way connector back up.
These motors very rarely actually burn out- they really don’t make that many revolutions in their work, so normally this will fix them as good as new. Of course, while you are under the rig, it’s a great time to lubricate the step.
Hope this helps!
Kwikee repair, part 2 by Chris Bryant is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.