If you don't want to be standing out in the cold arguing with a snowblower that doesn't want to run, then do the annual maintenance before the snow starts flying. Regular maintenance will give you years of hassle free use, and less attitude from your blower. Don't forget the safety aspect, because without proper maintenance your snowblower could become a hazard.
Each fall before winter arrives, you should check all bolts, belts, and moving parts, to ensure they are not frayed, loose, or worn. Belts are best checked by removing and checking for cracks. Replace any worn parts, and tighten any loose bolts.
Turn your snowblower on its side and check the scraper bar. This is the bar that rubs against the ground and scrapes the snow off. This item wears, so check to see if it need replacement. If you neglect to replace the bar when it is worn, it will lead to damage on the snowblower's housing, and that's will hurt your pocket book. In fact, if your snowblower gets a lot of use through out the season, check it regularly.
Check the rubber paddles and the rubber on the auger. If your finger fits between the rubber and the housing it's time to replace the rubber. A new rubber will help your snowblower operate at its optimum performance levels.
Check tires for wear and proper inflation. Adjust as needed. If you have tire chains for your snowblower, have them handy or put them on in advance. There's nothing worse than searching in the freezing cold, while trying to remember where you put the chains.
There are only two types of snow blower engines: The two cylinder engine which uses mixed gas and oil. You'll just need to replace the spark plug on this style of engine.
If you have a four cylinder engine which uses straight gas, with the oil in the crank case just like your vehicle, you'll need to change the oil, spark plug, and filter. You should also check the oil each time before you start it. Most four cylinders use 5W30 oil, and hold approx 20 ounces. Refer to your owner's manual for the correct oil weight, and replacement part numbers.
Lube the drive and chassis. If you have two stage blower, make sure you check the lube in the gear box. Check with your owners manual whether you have a one stage or two stage. It will also tell you the type of lubricant to use.
If there was fuel left from the previous year, you'll need to siphon it off, and fill the gas tank with fresh gasoline. It doesn't hurt to add some methanol in with the fuel, once or twice a season, to avoid condensation from building up in the tank, or the carburetor icing up.
About the author:
Keith Kingston is a professional web publisher who is an authority on a wide variety of subjects. Find out more about his reviews on snowblowers at http://www.snow-removal-online.com/