Snow blowers are very useful and vital machines during winter seasons. Such expensive and heavy machines cannot be brought every year. Hence, it becomes crucial to take care of them. You should take proper care of your snow blower to ensure that it runs smoothly during the snow season, and you must ensure that it is stored in a mint condition for a flawless working in the next season.
In this article, we are going to walk you through a snow blower repair and maintenance guide. This guide will help you in making your snow blower work without any issues and keep them in sound condition.
Snow Blower Repair Guide
We will highlight most common problems and their solutions your snow blower can face during a winter season
The engine won’t start or won’t stay running
Starting problems are linked with gas, compression, and spark plug. First of all, check that you have ample gas in the tank, and it is fresh; old gas can become stale and will cause starting problems. Check the fuel line, filters, and fuel pumps and make sure they are working properly. Now assess the condition of the spark plug, if the spark plug is cracked or gone bad, replace it. It is better to replace the spark plug at the beginning of the snow season. Also, check the compression system of your snow blower. The best way to do this is to remove the spark plug, put your thumb over the cylinder hole, and pull the starter rope. If you don’t feel the air against your thumb, there might be some problems with pistons or rings in the engine. For a serious issue, we recommend you call a professional snow blower mechanic.
If your engine won’t stay running, then it is most probably due to problems in fuel pipes, fuel pumps, or carburetor. Before checking anything else, it is always better to check that you have enough gas in the tank to keep it running. Servicing the carburetor is a good idea to make sure that your engine stays running. Your engine won’t stay running if you have a blocked carburetor.
Snow Blower won’t blow snow
If your snow blower stops blowing snow, then its auger is having some problems. Either it isn’t spinning, or its sections are not spinning. The auger housing or the chute is most probably clogged with the snow. First of all, you need to clear the auger and chute of any slow build-ups. If it is cleared and the snow blower isn’t working still, then you need to replace the broken shear pins. Check the auger; if it is damaged, you need to replace it as well.
Another way to deal with this problem is to adjust or replace the skid shoes so they can work properly. You can also tune the snow blower’s engine so the auger belt can spin properly. After you are done tuning, adjust the auger drive cable and belts. Replace them if they are damaged. Oiling all the moving parts to ensure that they move freely and without any friction is an excellent fix for speedy snow throwing.
Snow Blower is Difficult to Handle
If your snow blower gets difficult to handle overtime or lurches forward, it is probably due to loose cables. You need to tighten the cables for better control. If you control the drive handle and snow blower jerks forward, tighten the line. You can do this by unclipping the cable from the handle, adjust the alignment of the cable and tighten back the cable to its original position. Now check for jerks. Remember to lubricate all the moving parts for a frictionless control.
Snow Blower has a rough engine
If your snow blower starts well and doesn’t run smoothly, then you probably have a clogged carburetor. The best way to get a smoothly running snow blower is to service your carburetor. Sometimes, a dirty spark plug or a blocked fuel pump can be the cause of a strutting engine. A full tune-up before the arrival of snow is recommended for the proper functioning of the snow blower.
Too much snow behind
If your snowblower is leaving too much snow behind then, you need to replace the scraper bar to ensure that it gathers more snow. The Scrapper bar is a metallic bar that gathers the snow and delivers it to the auger so it can be thrown away far. You can do this by untightening the bolts that hold the bar at the back and replace it with a new one. Make sure you get a new bar with the same dimensions, so you don’t have any issues installing it.
A broken belt during use
If you end up breaking a belt during use, you need to replace it. There is no alternate solution to it. However, there is one precaution you can take so you don’t break it during run time. You must check your belt between sessions of snow blowing. If it is damaged or weakened, you can replace it timely and save yourself from all the hassle.
The electric starter is not working
If your snow blower has an electric starter and it is not working, then you need to check the switch or motor. First of all, check the power cable that delivers electric current. It should be plugged in properly, must not be damaged or unplugged from one end. Now you need to check the starter switch or motor. Removing them is easy, as you just need to unscrew these things from the frame. You can identify them through the user manual or search them online. Once you open them, look for any damages or burnt components, if anything is damaged, you need to replace the components and put them back in their place. If there is no issue with the motor and starter switch, then there is some issue with the connection between starter gear and flywheel gear. Handling these things is not an easy task; you must get professional help in this case.
Excessive vibration during use
Excessive vibration can be due to damaged paddle or bearings. First of all, make sure that every bolt is tightly in place so that no moving part is vibrating. Most of the snow blowers have this problem due to a damaged paddle; paddles throw the snow away from the front side of the blower. If it is damaged, it can cause too much vibration. The best way to deal with this problem is to fix the paddle. Another common reason for vibrations is problems with the bearing. The auger bearing holds the horizontal shaft that extends out of the gearbox. The loose bearing will cause vibrations.
Snow Blower is leaking gas
Another common repair needed for snow blowers is leaking gas. If you notice gas leakage from the bottom, it is due to a faulty carburetor gasket. Replace the gasket and avoid gas leakage. Another issue is due to a damaged duel filter. Sometimes a small hole or a leakage inside the fuel pump, fuel pipes can be the reason for gas leakage. You need to do a proper inspection of all the pipes and change the damaged one.
As we have seen that most of the snow blower issues are related to the carburetor, the video below will help you in dealing with all the carburetor issues.
Snow Blower Maintenance Tips
By acting on the following tips, you can ensure flawless snow blowing this season and give a long life to your snow blower. A snow blower can last for more than a decade with proper care and maintenance
Inspecting the Belts – Inspect all the belts for wear and tear, if you find anything wrong with them, it is time to change them. We recommend that you take a picture of the belts before removing them, so you remember how to fix them back.
Spark Plugs – We recommend that you do not run your snow blower with a blacked-out plug. Change your plug timely for better working of snow blower and a ling life.
Taking Care of the Pedals – The auger pedals work a lot to clear your path from the snow. Make a routine to check them for any damages. If you notice anything wrong with them, change them as soon as possible
Maintaining the Shave Plate – Shave plate removes the snow from the driveways. If you are using a single-stage snow blower, reverse the shave plate. For a two-stage snow blower, replace the shave plates.
Oil Changing – Changing the engine oil in your snow blower is very important. Engine oil runs through the engine to reduce friction among the moving parts. If it is dirty, it will damage all the parts which use it.
Shear Pin – The shear pins are meant to connect the auger to the auger case. They are meant to break when overloaded. We recommend that you keep some extra shear pins with you to avoid hassle and a quick replacement when the break.
Managing the Skid Shoes – Skid shoes are adjustable pieces on a 2-stage snow blower. They let you adjust the height of auger on your snow blower. They can be used again by replacing them once. If both sides are worn out, it is time to replace them.
Empty the Gas – If you are planning to store your snow blower for a season, make sure you empty all the gas in it. We recommend that you empty the carburetor and fuel pump as well. Gas left in them for a long period can cause them to clog.
Use Fresh Gas – When running your snow blower after a long time, you must use fresh gas in it. Do not use old gas in your snow blower as it can become stale and cause problems in starting. Adding a fuel stabilizer keeps the gas fresh for a long period.
Checking Tire Pressure – Checking the tire pressure is very important for maintaining a flawless snow blower. If you are going to face a blowout while working, changing the tire will be very problematic.
Lubrication – Lubricate all the moving parts, such as bearings. Friction in such areas can destroy the working and reduce the overall life of your snow blower.
Tightening the Bolts –Make sure that all the nuts are bolt are tight. Snow blowers vibrate a lot during use, and it can cause the nuts and bolts to loosen up. We recommend that you check the bolts after a couple of working sessions.
Degreasing – Always remember to keep the dirt and grease away from your snow blower. Spray the affected areas with a degreaser and let it rest for 15 minutes. Wipe the surface with an old cloth.
Recharging Batteries – If you have a model that operates on batteries, remember to take care of them. Do not recharge your batteries in freezing temperatures. Make sure your batteries are properly charged before the arrival of the winter season.
Snow Blower Safety Tips
Following tips are important to work with the snow blower safely
- Do not exhaust yourself working on a snow blower if you have some serious medical problems like heart issues, chronic back pain, or any problem which can be worsened due to extreme physical activity.
- Read everything about your snow blower in the user manual. It is better to know about the functioning and maximum capacity of snow blower before operating it. Do not let minors operate a snow blower.
- Make sure you wear protective gear like gloves, glasses, and working boots while repairing your snow blower. Do not wear any loose clothing while blowing snow as they can fall while working.
- Do not stick your hands or feet in front of the snow blower when it is running or even when you have turned off the blower. Auger blades keep on running for a short duration after they have been turned off, it can result in disastrous situations.
- Last but not least, make sure your snow blower is working fine before setting it to work.