December 6, 2020

Snowblower common questions

By Sears PartsDirect staff
Snowblower common questions
Snowblower common questions

These common questions about snowblowers are the ones our experts hear the most often from our customers. You might also find the help you need by checking the common symptoms and solutions for snowblowers. When you’re ready to make a repair, search your model number to find replacement parts. Sears PartsDirect has the part you need, no matter where you bought your snowblower.

Snowblower blowing snow

How do I adjust the skid shoes on my snowblower?

  1. Move the snowblower to an area with a flat, level surface.

  2. Lay down a sheet of cardboard or flattened shipping box that’s almost as wide as the shave plate and is about a quarter-inch thick. Place the cardboard so it’s under the shave plate but not under the skid shoes. The cardboard raises the shave plate to prevent wear on the plate.

  3. Use a wrench to loosen the skid shoe mounting nuts so the skid shoes rest flat on the surface and the shave plate rests flat on the cardboard.

  4. Tighten the skid shoe mounting nuts.

Check the skid shoe spacing often to prevent shave plate wear.

Where is the air filter on my gas snowblower?

You won’t find an air filter on most snowblower engines. Snowblower engines typically don’t have an air filter because snow would quickly clog the filter and the engine wouldn’t get air needed for combustion.

For the rare snowblower engines that do have an air filter, it’s typically located in front of the carburetor. Check the owner’s manual for your snowblower to determine if it has an air filter and find its location.

Can I use E85 (ethanol) fuel in my snowblower?

E85 is a fuel combination of ethyl alcohol (ethanol) and gasoline. It contains 85% ethanol. Many snowblowers are not designed or certified to use E85 fuel or any alcohol blended fuel. Check your owner's manual your specific model.

How should I store my snowblower?

Before storing the snowblower, run the engine until the fuel tank is empty and the engine stops. Gasoline left in the tank can form gum deposits in the fuel tank, filter, hose, and carburetor during storage.

You don't have to burn off the gas if you treated it with fuel stabilizer when you filled the tank. Don't add fuel stabilizer directly to the tank; always mix gas with stabilizer in a separate container, so you mix the right proportions.

Never store your snowblower with gasoline in the fuel tank indoors or in an enclosed, poorly ventilated area. Combustible fumes from the snowblower could be sparked by an open flame, a nearby pilot light or another heat source.

Symptoms for gas snowblowers

Choose a symptom to see related snowblower repairs.

Things to do: replace the spark plug, change the oil, rebuild the carburetor, adjust valve lash, adjust or replace the belts
Main causes: punctured tire, damaged rim
Main causes: dirty carburetor, clogged fuel filter, dirty spark plug, incorrect valve lash, leaky engine gaskets
Main causes: clogged chute, damaged auger blades, broken shear pins, worn auger belt, damaged gear case, engine problems
Main causes: stale gas, clogged carburetor, clogged or broken fuel line, dirty spark plug, bad rewind starter, incorrect valve lash
Main causes: clogged chute, snow build-up in auger housing, broken auger shear pins, auger drive belt needs adjustment, auger cable problems
Main causes: loose drive clutch cable, damaged drive clutch cable, worn friction disc, scraper blade scraping the ground, engine problems
Main causes: snow build-up in chute, chute drive mechanism failure, bad chute control assembly

Repair guides for gas snowblowers

These step-by-step repair guides will help you safely fix what’s broken on your snowblower.

December 1, 2015
By Lyle Weischwill
How to rebuild a snowblower carburetor

Rebuild the carburetor on your snowblower if the engine isn't getting fuel.

Repair difficulty
Time required
 45 minutes or less
How to replace a snowblower 4-way chute control assembly

Replace the 4-way chute control assembly on your snowblower if it’s damaged.

Repair difficulty
Time required
 30 minutes or less
December 1, 2015
By Lyle Weischwill
How to replace a snowblower stop switch

Replace the stop switch on your snowblower if your engine won't start.

Repair difficulty
Time required
 15 minutes or less

Articles and videos for gas snowblowers

Use the advice and tips in these articles and videos to get the most out of your snowblower.

December 6, 2020

Snowblower common questions

By Sears PartsDirect staff

Find answers to questions many people ask about snowblowers.

October 1, 2019

How to tune up a snowblower video

By Sears PartsDirect staff

Get an overview of the main steps in a snowblower tune-up and click to videos with more details.

November 1, 2014

How to replace snowblower skid shoes video

By Sears PartsDirect staff

Learn how to replace a worn skid shoe on a snowblower, before the shave plate can be damaged.