5 Things I’ve Learned About Snow Blowing as a Life-Long Midwesterner
As a dude who grew up in the upper Midwest, there are a few things I've learned along the way when it comes to blowing snow. Here are 5 things I've learned - some of them the hard way.
5 Things I've Learned About Snow Blowing
Don't wait for it to stop snowing.
My rule of thumb in a snowstorm is not to wait until it's done snowing before getting out there. Especially when the snow hits 6 inches. Removing snow a couple of times in a major white dump is easier on the snow blower and it'll throw snow further.
Throw snow as for as you can on your own property. Find that sweet spot for the target. Right next to the driveway or sidewalk isn't far enough and will more than likely drift back in. If your snow is filling the neighbor's driveway it's too far - and he'll be a wee bit torqued.
Make sure no extension cords are lying across the sidewalk. Unfortunately, I've learned this one the hard way. Just before the holidays, I couldn't figure out why our front yard light-up herd of reindeer was charging at me. It turns out, I got the extension cord caught in the auger and it was winding up the cord like a fishing reel! I stopped the snow blower before the deer met their untimely demise but it scared the daylights out of me.
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Use premium gas. To get optimal performance out of small engines use premium gasoline. It burns cleaner and there will be less maintenance down the road. When not in season, either drain the gasoline or use a fuel preserver such as Sta-Bil.
Have extra shear pins on hand. The shear pin holds the auger to the main shaft so it can do its job. They break...often. Hitting a rock, stress, or trying to get through too much snow and ice can be the culprit. Besides, having to drive to a hardware store in the middle of a storm is not fun. Buy extra shear pins and keep them in your toolbox to save time and a major headache down the road.