Snow Blowers


Snow Blower Safety – Accidents

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Snow Blower SafetyThis is a good time to remind everyone about being extra careful around snow blowers this season. Many people each year will lose a hand , fingers or experience severe damage to their arms as a result of an accident with a snow blower. How does this happen you might ask. Even though we mention on every post that you should always turn off  the snow blower before attempting to do any work on the machine, there is one other safety measure you need to take.

Snow Blower Safety

We read about this in the newspaper of places (old technology vs the web) and wanted to add this same safety tip to our blog. We have repeated our usual material about safety at the end of this post, but the real issue to be careful of is as follows:

Never work on your snow blower with the engine running – this seems like an obvious thing but people still do it and are hurt, sometimes badly, every year. Always turn it off before you do any maintenance, add fuel, check the oil, fix the chains on the tires, or clear the augers of snow.

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Clearing Snow from the Augers – this is were lots of people are hurt every year. Before you try to clear snow that is plugging the augers, shut the engine off to avoid sudden turning of the augers or the impeller which could cause lots of damage to fingers, hands and arms.

Use Snow Clearing Tool – This is the really important part. You have plugged the augers with snow, you have shut the machine off and now you are trying to clear the snow away. Never place your hands inside the augers to get at the snow. Use a broom handle if you have an old machine, or the snow clearing tool that came with your newer machine to clear the snow. You can also purchase these tools from most stores as an extra if you break yours or if you have an older machine which does not have one. This is the safe way to clear snow from around the augers and the impeller.

Sometimes the snow is so compacted, that as you clear it away, it allows the augers to turn as a result of built up tension in the pulley mechanism. Better to have a broom handle stuck in there than your hands!

Most new snow blowers come with a snow clearing tool which you can use for this purpose. Always use this tool and never use your hands. If you have an older machine, an old broom handle will do the trick as well.

Safety & Operation

All Snow Blowers are powerful machines and should be treated with safety in mind. Carefully read all of the safety guidelines in the manual prior to operating the machine for the first time and follow these guidelines to ensure that both you and the machine do not have an accident.

Prior to starting your snow blower  the first time each day, perform a quick walk around check of the machine to ensure there are no loose parts and no leaking fluids. Check the engine oil to ensure that it is at the correct level as specified by the manual. Top up if necessary. Fill the fuel tank while the engine is cold and prior to using the machine. If you do spill fuel, wait until it has fully evaporated prior to starting the engine. Never spill fuel on a hot engine to avoid fires and always fill the fuel tank outdoors to avoid any possibility of vapors going into your house.

Finally never point the chute in the direction of people, buildings or cars to avoid any possible damage and accidents. Sometimes chunks of ice can be thrown at high speed from the chute and if they hit something, it can cause a lot of damage.

Snow Blower Safety – Maintenance

Like all snow blowers or snow throwers, maintenance is important for your machine to operate at a peak level for many years. Change the engine oil regularly, check the belts for tightness, change the spark plug as required and grease any spots outlined in the manual. If you need to leave the snow blower outside all year round, cover the machine with a proper cover to keep it looking new and avoid deterioration of the tires and metal components.

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One Response to “Snow Blower Safety – Accidents”

  1. follow these safety guidelines. I almost had an accident with my snowblower and almost lost my hand as as a result. one inch closer and I am sure it would have been torn off. always shut it off before trying to work on it for any reason

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