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Outdoor power equipment 5-snowblower-mistakes

Published on March 3rd, 2015 | by Jeff Linderman


Five mistakes that could kill your snowblower

Make these end-of-season snowblower storage mistakes and it’s highly likely your snowblower won’t start when you need it again.

Many snowblower issues are caused by poor maintenance practices.

Here are five mistakes and how to avoid them:

1. Not draining and replacing the oil (in four-cycle engines)

Add fresh oil as recommended by the manufacturer. Do not dispose of used oil in your regular garbage. Most small engine repair shops have a free recycling program for this purpose. Before replacing engine oil, check your owner’s manual for the recommended way to tilt the snowblower. It varies from model to model. Unscrew the drain plug and release the oil into a bucket.

2. Leaving fuel to grow stale and clog the carburetor

Follow the owner’s manual for instructions on leaving fuel in the engine during storage, as this varies by manufacturer. If leaving fuel in the engine, make sure it’s fresh fuel. Be sure to add fuel stabilizer, too. This will slow buildup in the carburetor.

Shop fuel stabilizers

3. Allowing key components to rust

Lubricate wheel bearings, auger bearings and the impeller bearings.

Shop snowblower maintenance products

4. Not repairing damaged components

Inspect the scraper blade, slide shoes and other parts for wear. Thoroughly check the scraper blade and slide shoes (a.k.a. skid shoes) for wear. These parts have the important job of protecting the housing from damage. Replace these parts if they have worn dangerously thin or are damaged beyond repair.

5. Storing it, uncovered, in a dusty and dirty location

Cover the snowblower to prevent dust and debris from entering the unit. Like any outdoor power equipment, avoid storing the snowblower in a basement or other living space. Garages and sheds are the safest options for snowblower storage.

Other important snowblower maintenance to-dos

  • Review your snowblower owner’s manual maintenance instructions.
  • Degrease.

Spray a degreaser on greasy and dirty areas. Allow the degreaser to sit for 10-15 minutes before wiping with a clean cloth.

  • Replace the spark plug

Spark plugs are best replaced once per season.

  •  Check the fuel cap and tires.

Check the tires for wear and replace as needed. Fuel caps have small vent holes to allow air into the fuel tank. Replace the fuel cap if its air vent holes are blocked by buildup or debris. Cover or close the fuel cap vents.

And…as you prep your snowblower for storage, it’s a great time to get your lawn and garden equipment ready for spring.

Now through May 31, 2015 (31-05-2015), all engine tune-up kits are on sale.

Engine tune-up kits come packed with everything you need to tune up your lawn mower engine and get it ready for spring.

Find a tune-up kit for your engine at

Related info
Snowblower maintenance tips
Snowblower repair help
Lawn mower mower maintenance tips
Lawn mower repair help
The Great Spring Tune-up Kit Sale

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About RepairClinic

Since 1999, three and a half million people have purchased replacements parts and accessories from RepairClinic and saved more than $260 million in repair costs by fixing appliances, lawn equipment, power tools, and heating & cooling equipment on their own. From the beginning, RepairClinic has provided free troubleshooting and how-to resources on its website.

The company’s 2,000+ free how-to repair and how-it-works videos on its YouTube channel have been viewed more than 41 million times.

RepairClinic’s free, advanced online repair help system empowers do-it-yourselfers to fix common problems associated with home appliances, lawn equipment, power tools and heating & cooling equipment. DIYers can enter a model number to choose from a list of common symptoms for that particular model, troubleshoot and watch award-winning, expertly-produced videos to learn the most likely causes and conditions and purchase the correct part. stocks more than one million parts and accessories for 160 brands of lawn mowers, small engines, snowblowers, string trimmers, furnaces, air conditioners, air handlers, heat pumps, washing machines, dryers, dishwashers, vacuum cleaners, power tools and many other products.

Since 1999, the company has served more than three million customers including homeowners, first-time and beginner DIYers, advanced DIYers, appliance repair professionals, small engine repair shops and landscaping and lawn care business owners. RepairClinic orders are backed by a 365 Days. Period.® return policy that enables customers to return any part. Of the more than one million parts available on the website, 95 percent of parts ordered are in stock and guaranteed to ship the same business day. RepairClinic ships within the United States, U.S. territories and military bases and Canada.

About the Author

Jeff Linderman is’s in-house outdoor power equipment and landscaping expert. For 25 years, Jeff owned and operated a successful commercial and residential landscaping business. He couldn’t afford the extensive downtime that came when he brought his equipment to be repaired at overloaded small engine repair shops. Instead, Jeff learned how to complete the repairs on his own. This interest in outdoor power equipment grew as Jeff completed extensive manufacturer training. Today, Jeff is a Briggs & Stratton® Master Service Technician, Kohler® Engines Expert Technician and a Kawasaki® Service Technician for Engines and Power Products. He has a B.A. in criminal justice from Michigan State University. Jeff worked for 25 years as a sergeant in the Wayne County Sheriff’s Department while he operated his landscaping business. He’s an avid fisherman and lives in the metro-Detroit area.

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