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With every oncoming winter season, the excitement for the holidays and for much-deserved family time is often overshadowed by the dread of having to clear out the snow that you know will blanket your driveway.
There are several tricks and tools to help minimize how much snow does settle on your driveway. This includes sprinkling salt, a dish-soap-and-alcohol mixture, or even outdoor heaters for smaller spaces. However, they only minimize the degree of settling and don’t always keep it from happening altogether.
Once the snow does settle (and you know it will), it’s always your trusty snowblower to the rescue.
However, with continued use, you may notice a slight damper on how far your blower is throwing the snow. It might be time to take a closer look at things.
Snowbanks reach as high as six feet and more. A drop in the distance of your blower’s throw can definitely impact its snow-clearing capacity.
However, before you open your catalog to buy a new model, take a minute to fully assess what you’re working with.
Chances are you probably need to make only a couple of minor corrections to bring your snowblower’s performance back to mint-condition levels.
Read on to learn more about how to make your snowblower throw snow farther for more effective clearing.
Why is Your Snowblower Not Throwing Far Enough?
Before you go into the details of how to make your snowblower throw snow further, it might be wise to first take note of the things that often prevent your blower from throwing snow far enough.
This way, you can troubleshoot before you begin making changes to the snowblower itself.
Damage to any of the parts within the snowblower machinery can lead to decreased performance. However, the most common reason your snowblower isn’t throwing far enough is that its chute is clogged.
Snow essentially lodges onto bits of gravel or rust in the chute. This makes the opening increasingly narrow for loose snow to pass through.
Damaged blades, a worn-out auger, impeller belts, and broken shear pins are other reasons to look into if your snowblower still isn’t working at optimal levels after you’ve cleared out the chute.
How to Make My Snowblower Throw Snow Farther
Now that you’re up to speed on why your snowblower isn’t throwing snow far enough, it’s time to address the question you came here for – how to make your snowblower throw snow further.
Here are five quick tips to check out for improved snowblower throwing capacity:
1. Chute Clearance
This is a pretty straightforward approach. If chute blockage is the primary reason your snowblower can’t throw far enough, clearing out the chute should settle the matter.
The protocol for this isn’t very difficult either.
Most blower models come with a cleaning tool specifically for such purposes. They can be used to clear out any ice, snow, or gravel lodged in the chute. Only do this once the machine has been turned off.
If you don’t have a snowblower chute cleaning tool, generic versions are available online.
2. Impellers and Augers
Worn-out or thinning belts are another common cause for your snowblower’s throw becoming weaker.
In most cases, retightening the belt is only a quick fix and the belt is likely to break upon continued use.
Replacing the impeller and augur belts on the snowblower should show almost an immediate improvement in the blower’s snow-clearing and throwing capacities.
Be sure to select replacement belts that work for your brand and model of snowblower.
3. Engine Pulleys
A quick way to alter the speed of the blower altogether is to increase its engine’s rpm (rotations per minute).
Replacing your engine pulley with one of a slightly larger diameter will go a long way in improving the clearing speed of your blower.
While replacing the engine pulley is a definite means of improving speed, don’t change it too much. Increasing it by 0.5inches is acceptable but anything more will simply not fit into the same machinery.
Further, alongside each pulley you make larger, you also have to increase the size of your gear size to accommodate.
So, make it a point to really measure exactly how much leeway the current gear setup of your blower has before deciding on pulley size.
4. Regular Lubrication
Another efficient way of making sure your blower’s throwing distance is maintained is by ensuring that the machinery (especially the chute) is well lubricated.
The lubrication makes sure the snow doesn’t stick to the chute and instead slides out smoothly.
The lack of resistance further helps with the distance your propelled snow covers.
5. Rust Prevention
Keeping your blower rust-free means that your snow doesn’t have anywhere to hold onto when being thrown by the blower.
This goes hand-in-hand with lubrication. The more rust you allow to develop on your blower, especially along the chute, the easier you’re making it for your snow to clog the pipes.
The rust essentially acts as a handle for the snow. No matter how slippery you make the slide, if you keep a bunch of handles along the way, the snow is bound to grab onto one of them.
Maintenance of metal parts can be something as simple as using a rust protectant shield regularly, but a clean, well-maintained, rust-free chute goes a long distance in clearing your snow, pun intended.
How to Keep the Snowblower Blowing Snow Far
Even after you’ve taken precautions to help better your snowblower’s throwing capacity, things may begin to go downhill fairly quickly if you don’t maintain your snowblower well.
Aside from all the points mentioned above to check upon, also make it a point to frequently tune-up your engine.
Regular tune-ups include changing the oil, making sure the ignition is working, checking up on the carburetor, testing the batteries, and then some.
This might seem like a hassle to do on a regular basis but is well worth it. Catching glitches early on plays a big role in how long you can keep your snowblower in optimum condition.
Typically, if one element goes astray, it puts strain on some other parts which are then bound to wear out.
Catching the issue when it’s only at one component saves you a lot of time, money, and effort. It’ll be just that one gadget you need to repair or replace.
On some occasions, however, replacing your blower might be the best thing you can do for continued performance.
The average snowblower lasts about 15-25 years based on how well-maintained it is.
If your model is more than 10 years old and you can see clear issues with multiple elements, it might just be time to invest in a new one.
What Snowblower Throws the Farthest?
Despite all the hours of maintenance you put in for your snowblower, the brand and make play a major role in your blower’s performance at the end of the day.
So, while you should be up to date on maintenance protocols, you also need to stay privy to the best snowblower models for your winter requirements.
If coverage and projection are what you’re most in need of, then the Ariens® Deluxe30 wins the general consensus as the blower with the best clearing distance.
In mint condition, it gives you a distance of up to 50 feet. To give you a sense of how good this performance is, the average snowblower throws snow up to 20 feet.
Another highly promising model is from the Power Max® HD series, which can throw snow up to 45 feet.
It might cover a slightly lesser distance than the Ariens model, but it makes up for it in pricing.
If you consider distance covered per unit price, Power Max definitely has the edge over other makes.
Takeaway – Keep Your Driveway Cleared of Snow
That’s all you know all that you need to on how to make your snowblower throw snow farther.
All that’s left to do is wrap yourself in your winter finest and get onto powering through the snow-barricade across your driveways.
With your snowblower now throwing snow as far as you need it to, if not further, a clear driveway shouldn’t be a matter of more than a couple of quick hours.