Posts Tagged ‘snow blower’

How-To Replace Snow Blower Bearings

Friday, November 21st, 2014

Hopefully, after reading our last post, you’ve decided to give your snow blower a good check-up. This is especially necessary for machines 5-7 years old, as that is generally when wear-and-tear and rust will start affecting ol’ trusty.

Following our previous post, How-To Replace Snow Blower Belts, today we will go over replacing the bearing within the snow blower. We’d recommend doing this if you are replacing the belts even if the bearing seems in good shape, if for no other reason than you’ve already taken the machine apart!

As previously mentioned, once you have removed the old belts from your snow blower, you’ll want to inspect the pulleys. If they wobble or spin easily, the bearings will need to be replaced.

Don’t worry, it won’t take long.

Step 1. Position the snow blower so that the pulley is face up and you can easily work on it. Then, remove the nuts holding the pulley in place. (Sometimes rust causes the pulley to stick, so you’ll want to gently rock it back and forth while pulling).

Step 2. Loosen the screws around the sides of the adapter in order to pull the adapter off. Again, rust may make this difficult. I’d recommend using some oil in this case, and it should come off pretty easily.

Step 3. Once the pulley is off, pull the Woodruff key out from the slot (or tap it out with a screwdriver and a hammer), and remove the bolts at its base in order to pull off the cover.

Step 4. Now you can see the bearing. To pull it out, you’ll want to clean the shaft thoroughly and apply some oil or WD40.

Tip: If you find it particularly difficult to get the bearing out by hand, try using a puller.

Step 5. Set the new bearing on the shaft and use a socket to lightly and evenly tap it into place. Be sure the bearing sticks up a few millimeters from being flush.

To finish, you’ll just need to add the cover, adapter, and pulley back on.

Step 6: Set the adapter so there is about a quarter inch of clearance from the bottom to the bearing. There should be about a quarter inch of the shaft showing at the top as well. Then, simply reapply the pulley and tighten the nuts.

Now ol’ trusty can be just that again.

How-To Replace Snow Blower Belts

Friday, November 14th, 2014

It’s that time of year again – cold, cold, cold, and snow. Before the stormy weather really gets going, it might be a good idea to give your snow blower a check-up. If you have owned your snow blower for more than 5 years, the belts likely need replacing.

Learn how to replace these belts on your own with the help of this how-to.

Tip: To ensure you get several seasons out of your new belts, buy genuine factory belts from the dealer or online. For this you’ll need your snow blower’s make and model number and the engine brand and model number.

Replacing Snow Blower Belts – 8 Simple Steps:

Step 1. Safety first. Disconnect the spark plug wire from the spark plug.

Step 2. Remove the belt cover.

Step 3. Disconnect the chute crank and deflector cable. Then, remove the bolts and split the frame away from the auger housing to access the belts.

(If you see cracks, cuts, fraying or splitting, it’s time to replace the belts.)

Step 4. Remove the old belts. Use a 12 in. extension bar, ratchet and socket to remove the upper belt guard. Then, empty the gas tank and tip the machine up so you can remove the bottom access plate. Slide each belt out, and note how the belts are routed. You will reverse this procedure to install the new belts.

Tip: Take pictures as a reference to make sure the new belts are routed the same way.

Step 5. Inspect the pulleys. If they spin or wobble easily, the bearings may need to be replaced. (This will be covered soon in a future post – stay tuned).

Step 6. Install the new belts. Reverse the process in step 4. Thread the new belts onto the pulleys. Once in place, make sure they aren’t rubbing against any parts of the snow blower.

Step 7. Reconnect the frame by reinstalling the bolts to hold the frame and auger housing together. Also reattach the chute crank and deflector cable.

Step 8. Reattach the belt cover and the spark plug.

Tip: Don’t forget to add fuel back into the gas tank. Also, it’s a good idea to keep spare belts on hand so that if one breaks, you can replace it immediately.

Now that your machine is in top shape, you’ll be ready to take on that first winter snowfall.

Solve Two Snow Blower Problems

Friday, December 27th, 2013

Problem #1: The smoking belt and impeller won’t engage.

No snow is coming out of the chute but the belt squeals or smokes.

What you do: Release that handle and turn the snow blower off. If it has a full tank, place some plastic with a grocery bag under the filler cap to keep the gas from dripping directly from the cap vent. Reach in back to the second stage impeller, which is the 3 or 4 bladed fan responsible for throwing the snow out of the chute on a two stage snow blower. If you can’t turn it, check if it’s frozen to the bottom of the drum. For the most part, there’s a drain hole in the bottom of the drum to keep this from happening. However, that doesn’t always suffice. In some cases, the impeller blade coasts to a stop with one of the blades straight down, making it all the easier to freeze.

How to repair: Bring the snow blower to a warm place where you can thaw it. You can also use a hair dryer. Or, make a tent using a tarp above the snow blower and create some warm air with a space heater. Direct the heat from the space heater into the auger area of the snow blower.  Caveat: use extra caution with the proximity of the heater and the direction you point it. A space heater could melt plastic parts or even ignite the tarp.

Prevention: Get rid of the snow off the snow blower and inside the impeller/auger housing every after usage. Then, see to it that no impeller blade is pointing down to where the melted snow can puddle and freeze.

Problem #2: Auger or wheel drive handle won’t employ

This happens most often on models with cables as compared to linkage.

What you do: The cable gets moisture inside and tends to freeze. In case you don’t have cables, follow the linkage to a pivot point which is frozen. This could call for removing an access cover. Thaw out cables or linkage with the same method you use in a frozen impeller with properly applied heat.

Prevention:  Take off both ends of the cable and apply a low temperature or white lithium grease. Work the cable back and forth in an effort to coat the entire length.  It’s also possible to spray WD-40 into the cable.  This may help for a while but will not last as long as the grease.  Do not use ball bearing grease as this will not work properly in the cold temperatures.  You must use a low temperature grease.

Snow Blower Repair Issues

Friday, December 6th, 2013

Snow blowers help us dodge some troubles. However, like any other tools or machines, things don’t always go their way. Here are some of the most common hiccups with snow blowers and how to fix them:

Engine Doesn’t Start
If you have already primed the motor of your engine and it still won’t start, see to it that the choke is in the right position, the safety key should be fully inserted, there’s gasoline in the tank, and the spark plug must not be fouled. If everything seems to be okay, it could be that the gasoline has gone bad. Fuel goes stale within months, so fill it up with new gas. If the gas tank is full, drain it and re-fill with fresh fuel.

The Engine Suddenly Stops Running
The engine, all of a sudden, loses power. What do you do? You make sure that the spark plug wire is securely connected to the spark plug. If it still doesn’t work, check the gas cap. The gas cap is vented and if ice or snow causes blockage, the unit will lose power. Give it another shot after getting rid of anything that’s there.

It Does Not Discharge Snow
Your snow thrower’s discharge chute can get clogged, and there could be myriads of reasons behind it. One of which could be the snow itself. Moving slushy snow via a snow thrower’s auger can be compared to making a snow ball using your hands. Moving and compacting the snow will turn it to ice, and this clogs up the chute. As a remedy, make use of the tool’s clean-out tool, if any, to get rid of the obstruction from the chute. You can also go for a stick. See to it that you shut the unit down and disconnect the spark plug prior to doing this process. A foreign object could also be lodged in the auger. Power the unit down and get rid of the obstruction.

Unit Jerks and Grabs While Running
Snow throwers are most efficient when the blade is able to ride across the ground and get under the snow. However, sidewalk are often riddled with dimples, cracks and pockmarks. When your machine is moving a tad too quickly, and an irregularity occurs, it could bounce up a bit and snow could get lodged under the blade. This may bring about jerking or stuttering. The remedy: slow down.

However, if the irregularity is remarkable, such as an uneven slab, the blade simply jams into it and your machine could be prevented from moving forward at all. Again, slowing down is key. The blade stays in contact with the ground, and it won’t take on more snow than it’s able to handle. In this case it can catch and eject the snow efficiently.

All that being said, keep your shovel available. Even though you have a snow thrower, you should not kick your shovel to the curb. You still need it when you have to attack the steps and nooks where your muscled-up snow thrower can’t go.