How To Turn On A Snowblower

Do you know how to turn on a snowblower? It can be a bit tricky if you’ve never done it before, but don’t worry, I’ve got you covered! In this article, I’ll walk you through the step-by-step process of starting up your snowblower so that you can clear away that snow with ease. By the end of this article, you’ll be ready to tackle any snowy driveway or sidewalk that comes your way!

First things first, let’s make sure you have everything you need. Before starting your snowblower, you’ll want to check that you have enough fuel and oil. It’s also important to have a clear space to work in and to dress appropriately for the cold weather. Once you’ve taken care of those preparations, it’s time to get started!

To turn on your snowblower, locate the ignition switch. It’s usually located near the handle or on the control panel of the machine. Once you’ve found it, make sure the engine stop switch is in the “ON” position. This switch is typically labeled with the symbol of a lightning bolt. Next, adjust the choke lever to the desired setting. If the engine is cold, you’ll want to set it to the “CHOKE” position. If the engine is already warm, you can set it to the “RUN” position. Finally, give the recoil starter a firm pull to start the engine. If all goes well, you’ll hear the familiar sound of your snowblower roaring to life and you’ll be ready to take on that snow!

How to Turn On a Snowblower

Preparing for the winter season involves many tasks, including making sure your snowblower is in proper working condition. To ensure efficient snow removal, it’s essential to know how to turn on your snowblower safely and effectively. In this article, we will guide you step-by-step on how to turn on a snowblower and provide tips for smooth operation.

Preparing for Snowblowing

Before starting your snowblower, it’s crucial to check the fuel and oil levels, as well as verify the spark plug.

Checking the Fuel Level

To check the fuel level, start by locating the fuel tank on your snowblower. Most snowblowers have a fuel gauge or clear window on the tank, allowing you to see the level of gasoline. If the fuel level is low, fill it up with fresh gasoline. It’s important to use the recommended type of gasoline mentioned in the snowblower’s manual to prevent damage to the engine.

Inspecting the Oil Level

Next, locate the oil dipstick on the snowblower’s engine. Pull it out, wipe it clean, and reinsert it back into the oil reservoir. Remove it again and check the oil level. If it’s low, add the recommended type and amount of oil as stated in the manual. It’s crucial to maintain the proper oil level to ensure smooth operation and longevity of the engine.

shop Amazon

Verifying the Spark Plug

The spark plug plays a vital role in starting the snowblower. Locate the spark plug wire and gently remove it from the spark plug. Use a spark plug socket wrench to remove the spark plug. Inspect the spark plug for any signs of wear, such as a worn electrode or excessive carbon buildup. If necessary, replace the spark plug with a new one, ensuring it’s properly gapped according to the snowblower’s manual.

Safety Measures

Snowblowers are powerful machines that require safety precautions. Before starting your snowblower, take the following safety measures to protect yourself and others.

Wearing Protective Gear

Always wear protective gear, including safety goggles, gloves, and sturdy footwear. Snowblowers can throw objects, and the noise can be loud, so protecting your eyes, hands, and feet is crucial. Additionally, wearing warm clothing and a hat will keep you comfortable during extended snowblowing sessions.

Clearing the Work Area

Before starting your snowblower, ensure the work area is clear of any obstacles, such as rocks, branches, or toys. Clearing the area will prevent potential damage to the snowblower and ensure safe snow removal. Also, be cautious of bystanders and pets nearby, and make sure they are at a safe distance before starting the machine.

Understanding the Controls

To effectively turn on your snowblower, you must familiarize yourself with its controls.

Locating the Ignition Switch

The ignition switch is typically located on the control panel of your snowblower. It may be a key or a push-button ignition. Locate the switch and ensure it is in the “off” position before starting.

Identifying Choke Position

The choke is an essential component that helps with cold starting. It restricts the flow of air into the engine, enriching the fuel mixture, making it easier to start in cold conditions. Familiarize yourself with the choke position on your snowblower. It is usually labeled or marked on the control panel.

Finding the Throttle Control

The throttle control determines the engine speed. Before starting your snowblower, identify the throttle control and set it to the desired speed. Higher speed is suitable for heavier snow, while lower speed is ideal for lighter snow or maneuvering in tight spaces.

Priming and Choking the Snowblower

Before starting the engine, it’s essential to prime and choke the snowblower to facilitate a smooth start.

Locating the Primer Bulb

The primer bulb is a small rubber bulb located near the fuel tank or carburetor. Its purpose is to draw fuel into the carburetor to assist with starting. Locate the primer bulb on your snowblower.

Pressing the Primer Bulb

To prime the engine, press the primer bulb several times slowly, allowing the fuel to circulate. This will ensure proper fuel flow and make starting easier, especially in cold weather.

Setting the Choke

Set the choke according to the outside temperature. In colder temperatures, set the choke to the full or partially closed position. As the engine warms up, gradually open the choke until it is fully opened. This will prevent the engine from flooding and ensure a smooth start.

Starting the Snowblower

After priming and choking the snowblower, you can proceed with starting the engine.

Positioning the Snowblower

Ensure the snowblower is on a stable and level surface. If equipped with wheels or tracks, engage the parking brake and ensure it is securely locked.

Engaging the Safety Features

Snowblowers are equipped with various safety features that must be engaged before starting the engine. These can include a deadman’s switch, which shuts off the engine if you release the grip, or an auger control lever that must be pressed down. Familiarize yourself with the specific safety features on your snowblower and ensure they are engaged.

Turning the Ignition Key

If your snowblower has a key ignition, insert the key into the ignition switch and turn it to the “on” position. Alternatively, if your snowblower has a push-button start, press and hold the start button until the engine starts. Be patient if the engine doesn’t start immediately, as it may take a few attempts, especially in colder temperatures.

Operating the Snowblower

Once the engine is running, it’s time to operate the snowblower and start clearing snow.

Adjusting the Speed

Use the throttle control to adjust the engine speed to your desired level. Higher speed is suitable for heavy snow, while lower speed is ideal for lighter snow or maneuvering in tight spaces. Experiment with different speeds to find what works best for your specific snow conditions.

Choosing the Direction

Most snowblowers have a chute rotation control and a deflector control. The chute rotation control adjusts the direction of snow discharge, while the deflector control adjusts the height and distance of the snow being thrown. Familiarize yourself with these controls and adjust them as necessary during snow removal.

Navigating Different Surfaces

When operating the snowblower, be cautious of uneven terrain or hidden objects underneath the snow. If your snowblower has adjustable skid shoes or auger height control, adjust them accordingly to prevent damage to the machine or surface.

Clearing Snow

To effectively clear snow, it’s important to position the discharge chute correctly and engage the auger and impeller.

Positioning the Discharge Chute

The discharge chute should be aimed away from people, buildings, or any objects that could be damaged. Adjust the chute rotation control to direct the snow away from your cleared path.

Engaging the Auger and Impeller

The auger and impeller are responsible for scooping and throwing the snow. Ensure they are engaged by pressing down the auger control lever. Do not attempt to clear snow manually while the auger is spinning.

Moving Forward Slowly

While operating the snowblower, walk slowly, allowing the machine to do the work. Pushing or forcing the snowblower too fast can lead to clogging or ineffective snow removal. Let the machine move forward at its own pace, and guide it along your desired path.

Maintaining the Snowblower

Proper maintenance is crucial to keep your snowblower running smoothly and efficiently throughout the winter season.

Cleaning After Use

After each use, clean any snow buildup or debris from the snowblower. This will prevent rust and damage to the machine. Additionally, clean the discharge chute to prevent clogs and ensure smooth snow discharge.

Inspecting and Replacing Parts Regularly

Regularly inspect your snowblower for any signs of wear or damage. Pay close attention to the auger blades, belts, and shear pins. Replace any worn or damaged parts to maintain the snowblower’s performance and prevent further damage.

Storing the Snowblower Properly

At the end of the winter season, properly store your snowblower to prevent damage and ensure it’s ready for use next year. Clean the machine thoroughly, remove any excess fuel, and store it in a dry and secure location.

Troubleshooting and Tips

Despite proper maintenance, you may encounter certain issues while operating your snowblower. Here are some troubleshooting tips:

Dealing with Clogs

If the snowblower gets clogged, immediately shut off the engine, disconnect the spark plug wire, and safely clear the clog. Never attempt to clear the clog while the engine is running.

Addressing Starting Issues

If the engine has difficulty starting, check the fuel level, choke position, and spark plug. Ensure the fuel is fresh, the choke is set properly, and the spark plug is in good condition.

Snowblowing Tips for Efficiency

To increase efficiency while snowblowing, overlap each pass slightly to ensure complete snow removal. Additionally, remove heavy or wet snow in smaller increments to prevent overloading the machine.


By following these steps and safety measures, you can confidently turn on your snowblower and efficiently clear snow. Remember to maintain your snowblower regularly to ensure optimal performance and longevity. Enjoy the convenience and effectiveness of snow removal with a well-operating snowblower. Stay safe and warm throughout the winter season!