Snow Safety Tips

Nothing takes the joy out of snow faster than an unfortunate experience like slipping, frostbite or injury. And while winter has its hazards, there are preventive measures you can take to help you stay safe during the season, so you can spend more time enjoying it rather than loathing it.

Regardless of the type and amount of snowfall your area receives, use these snow safety tips to keep you out of harm's way.

SNOW REMOVAL SAFETY TIPS:

Clear snow before driving over it with your car. Paired with freezing temperatures, your vehicle's weight can compress snow and create ice that is extremely difficult to remove and dangerous to walk on.

Shovel snow with caution. It's not uncommon to throw your back out when shoveling, as many individuals put unnecessary strain on their bodies by lifting heavy snow with shovels. Rather, push snow aside when clearing to prevent injury.

Inspect sidewalks and driveways for rocks or other foreign objects - like newspapers - that could cause injury or damage to the machine and bystanders.

Wear protective eyewear and gloves when applying salt to icy areas to protect yourself from any chemicals in the mixture.

Consider using a snow blower to take the hard work out of clearing snow; saving you time and reducing any potential physical pains that come with shoveling.

SNOW BLOWER OPERATION SAFETY TIPS:

Never point the snow blower chute in the direction of people or animals, as this can cause serious injury.

Never point the snow blower chute in the direction of people or animals, as this can cause serious injury.

Remove all newspapers, doormats, boards, wires and any other objects that could be tripped over or thrown by the auger.

Refrain from wearing any jewelry, scarves or loose clothing that could be tangled in moving parts before operating.

Disengage all control levers before starting the engine.

Factory settings are satisfactory for most conditions. If you need to make any adjustments, contact your Troy-Bilt®-authorized service center.

Let the engine and machine adjust to the outdoor temperature by running it for a few minutes before starting to clear snow. The engine will not develop full power until it reaches operating temperatures.

Never use a single-stage snow blower on an uphill slope. It will not have the gears and power steering to clear snow safely. If you have a steep driveway, it's best to go with a two-stage.

Never use your hands to clear a clogged chute assembly. To properly clear a clogged chute, shut off the engine and remain behind the handles until all moving parts have completely stopped. The chute clean-out tool is conveniently fastened to the rear of the auger housing with a mounting clip. To use, simply take the shovel-shaped tool to break down, and remove ice and snow that have collected in the chute.

What Snow Blower Maintenance Steps Should I Follow?

In order to be ready and able to take on winter, follow these maintenance tips and tasks to ensure your snow blower can handle all the season throws (or drops) its way.

After 1st 5 Hours of Use After Each Use (or Every 5 Hours) After Every Season or 25 Hours After Every Season or 50 Hours After every season or 100 Hours
Change the Engine Oil X X
Check the Engine Oil X
Clean the Exhaust Area X
Clean the Spark Plug X
Lubricate the Gear Shaft X
Service the Spark Plug X

Instructions

Safety first. Before cleaning, repairing or inspecting the machine, disengage all control levers and stop the engine. Wait until the auger/impeller comes to a complete stop. Disconnect the spark plug ignition wire and ground it against the engine to prevent unintended starting. Never crank the engine with the spark plug removed.

Thoroughly inspect the unit. Check bolts and screws for proper tightness at frequent intervals to keep the machine in safe working condition. Also, visually inspect the machine for any damage, and check the fuel line, tank, cap and fittings frequently for cracks or leaks. Replace, if necessary.

Practice proper engine health. Do not change the engine governor setting or over-speed the engine, as the governor controls the maximum safe operating speed of the engine.

Pay attention to key parts. Snow blower shave plates and skid shoes are subject to wear and damage. For your safety/protection, frequently check all components and replace with original equipment manufacturer's (OEM) parts only. Use of parts that do not meet the OEM's specifications may lead to improper performance and compromise safety.

Keep control levers in check. Check control levers periodically to verify they engage and disengage properly, and adjust if necessary.

Ensure visibility of safety labels. Maintain or replace safety and instruction labels, as necessary.

Educate yourself. Become familiar with and practice proper disposal laws and regulations for gas, oil, etc., to protect the environment.

How to Clean Out a Clogged Snow Blower Chute

In most cases, the chute clean-out tool is conveniently fastened to the rear of the auger housing with a mounting clip. Should ice and snow become lodged in the chute assembly during operation, proceed as follows to safely clean the chute assembly and chute opening.
 
Warning: Never use your hands to clean a clogged chute assembly. Shut off the engine and remain behind handles until all moving parts have stopped before unclogging.

Instructions

Release both the auger control and the drive control.

Stop the engine by removing the ignition key.

Remove the clean-out tool from the clip which secures it to the rear of the auger housing (location may vary by model).

Use the shovel-shaped end of the clean-out tool to dislodge and scoop any snow and ice which has formed in and near the chute assembly.

Refasten the clean-out tool to the mounting clip. Reinsert the ignition key and start the snow blower's engine.

While standing in the operator's position (behind the snow blower), engage the auger control for a few seconds to clear any remaining snow and ice from the chute assembly.