Storing a gas snowblower till next winter

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Never had a gas powered snow blower until now. How do I store it until I need it next winter? The engine takes a mixture of gas and oil. I already ran it until the engine died for lack of fuel. What else do I need to do (i.e. with the spark plug, etc)
Thanks. Walter
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Walter Cohen wrote:

That's the big part. For me I would be sure to hose it off to get any salt off of it and clean it up. I might spray any exposed metal with some WS-40 and store it someplace dry and safe.
--
Joseph Meehan

Dia \'s Muire duit
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Emptying gas tank and carburettor are primary. I also (2) empty the oil sump; (3) remove spark plug, squirt a few drops of oil in the hole and pull manual starter once (to distribute oil on cylinder walls, and replace the spark plug only finger tight; (4) store under cover from the weather.
--
Don Phillipson
Carlsbad Springs
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NO FINGER TIGHT SPARK PLUGS !! I unknowingly started a lawn mower with a finger tight spark plug. When the spark plug left the cylinder head and went through the side of my boot I figured "no problem" it will heal. Two weeks later they amputated my great toe at the first joint.
Bill
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news:463e6b88$0$4642

...and I'd say the same to the suggestion to "drain the oil". Bad idea - you will forget, and it will be expensive when you're reminded by the shrieking sound of bent, busted piston & valves.
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wrote in message

What is this "oil" you speak of? If he burnt off all the gas, where would there be oil?
Sorry about your toe! I wouldn't have expected that to happen; it must have been very loose.
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Every snowblower that I have seen was 4-stroke not 2-stroke. 4-stroke engines have oil in a sump under the crankshaft (and a drain plug below.)

a
and
When the plug is replaced finger tight for winter storage, the spark lead remains disconnected -- so must be reconnected before the magneto can work. In any case, a good startup routine includes cleaning and regapping the plug at the beginning of the season.

idea -

Small 4-stroke engines make the oil dirtier faster than do automobile engines, i.e. the oil should be replaced once a year. This means (1) draining the oil (from a warm engine) at the end of seasonal use, (2) refilling with clean oil either immediately (for winter storage) or first thing next season (when we also regap the plug or fit a new plug.)
--
Don Phillipson
Carlsbad Springs
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snipped-for-privacy@ncf.ca (Don Phillipson) wrote in

From the original post in this thread:
"The engine takes a mixture of gas and oil."
My own snowthrower has a 2-cycle engine.
--
Bert Hyman | St. Paul, MN | snipped-for-privacy@iphouse.com

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wrote in message

Do like they do in the military- use zip ties/baling wire, and big colored tags, to mark any oil sumps and POL tanks that have been drained, so the poor SOB that pulls it out of storage years later has a clue what is going on. Hell, the older I get, the more yellow sticky notes I use to leave reminders to myself.
aem sends....
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Even better, just change the oil at the end of the season and put in new oil, which is what I do. I don't know of any engine manufacturer that recommends storing an engine with no oil in it. An empty sump is just more air space for condensation to take place. Plus, I don;t see what the preceived advantage to leaving it empty would be.
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On May 9, 8:34 am, snipped-for-privacy@optonline.net wrote:

The advantage is that untreated gas can go bad over the winter and clog the tank and the carb requires an inconvenient and possibly expensive repair.
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My comments were in regard to draining the oil, ie the lubricating oil in the sump, not the gas. The preceeding post should have made that clear, because there was discussion about tagging the engine to make sure it's not started later with no oil in it. Wouldn't need to do that if it's the gas tank. Very few snowblowers are even 2 stroke.
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On May 9, 10:53 am, snipped-for-privacy@optonline.net wrote:

oops my mistake. I admit I have never seen a two-stroke snow-blower either. Right now they are trying to use as little of them as possible. Chain saws and weed whacker are the only two stroke machines I see anymore. A lot of Motercyles and lawm mowers use to be but I don't see them anymore. Outboard motors are still made as a two stroke but I think they are phasing them out. For weight to power ratio the 2-stroke is superior to the 4-stroke but I guess they are worse for the environment and inconvenient for the consumer having to mix the fuel. My chain saw and weed whacker are 2-stroke, love em.
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Three out of four of Don's suggestions are spot on, and number 3 is especially important, but:
Don't drain the oil from the sump.
Next October / November, as you get it ready for the snow season, get it started and run it 10 or so minutes in neutral to get the oil hot.
Shut it down, drai the oil and refill with clean new lube oil of whatever grade the mfgr recommends.
To get it unning after strage, you'll want to put in a new plug. You may also want to spray a bunch of "Start Fluid" (ether) or carb cleaner into the cylinder while the old plug is out and before puting the new plug in, and pull the engine over once or twice, to clean the oil residue from the cylinder / pistons.
Don Phillipson wrote:

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On Fri, 11 May 2007 11:07:13 -0700, jJim McLaughlin

The very LAST thing you would want to do is wash off that wonderful coating of oil! That oil is all that stands between you and a scored cylinder and piston. The engine's normal lubrication system is not going to do much in the first few seconds after it starts. Any idea how much damage you can cause in 10-20 seconds of running with no oil on the cylinder walls?
CWM
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My local mechanic tells me that it's no good to run the machine dry unless the carb were also emptied. The main risk is from gas turning to gel in the carb which requires repair. He says that gas used to have additives (lead) which made them very stable. Now that those dangerous additives have been removed gasoline has a limited useful life when stored in small quantities.
He has instructed me that when storing a machine to add a gasoline stabilizer to whatever gas is left in the machine and then run the machine at least long enough to get treated gas into the carb. The stuff is available everwhere. In his opinion it would not be necessary to run the machine out of gas if this additive is used. It also wastes gas and pollutes the air uneccessarily.
He also suggested that I add the stuff to all of the gas I use in my numerous small engines since they are used intermittently. It is not expensive. They are a busy shop and don't want to see me for somthing stupid like a clogged carb.
They also suggest dryer sheets in the exhaust pipe to discourage rodents. One more than one occasion mice have made their home inside my mowers. Moth balls have also been mentioned as a rodent repellent. Just don't forget that they are in there!
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I use Sta-Bil in all gas for my many small engines, and That's ALL I do. One ounce for every 2.5 gallons. No draining of carbs, no running them dry. I just took my lawnmower out yesterday after sitting for 6 months. pushed the primer 3 times, pulled the rope once and off I went. I use Sta-Bil in all gas for both 2 and 4 stroke engines. Screw all the "storage instructions". It's all baloney, except possibly using a fogging oil. I do that for some of the bigger motors, but I can't say it really does anything useful. I have 30 year old small engines that have never been fogged and they still run just fine.
CWM
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Charlie Morgan wrote:

Same here, I add some stabil and run for a few minutes and the machine is ready for storage with no problems when it comes out of storage.
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Since you have a two stroke engine (gas and oil) I would run it dry. I would recommend first getting all the gas out of the gas tank. From there run it dry. Make sure to use the choke on it when it starts to sputter. Now some motors have a drain screw or plug on the bottom of the carb. You need to get that out too.
Annual maint. should be check and clean the plug as well as grease it up. If the unit is fairly new I wouldnt worry yet about the rubber paddles or the auger belt. If you have "never seize" (silver stuff) I would recommend putting it on the threads of the spark plug. Make sure not to overtighten that spark plug!
The problem with gas is that when it gets old it starts to gel. Clogs up everything. Now with two cycle gas, the oil in there seperates and basically becomes a nasty black tar. Real pain to get it all out. Many many cans of Gumout to clean out a gas tank and carb.
If you have an older snowblower with a steel gas tank I would recommend leaving gas in there to prevent rust from forming inside of it. Stabil works ok. Some like it, others dont. I have used it one on some motors with success. If you do go the stabil route, you should periodically run the engine to make sure its happy. Nothing like a tool failing right when you need it.
Tom
P.S. On a 4 cycle motor, dont forget to change that motor oil!

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Ok, so then it sounds like I could put a few drops of oil in the plug opening and pull the starter a few times, then replace the plug. What do you think about me leaving the gas/oil tank filler cap off for a day to evaporate any small amount of gas/oil (oil won't evaporate but the gas will).
Thanks, Walter
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