The darkest and coldest season of the year is back with its beauty.
“To appreciate the beauty of a snowflake it is necessary to stand out in the cold.”- Aristotle
Well, if you stay in a place where snow accumulation is a regular phenomenon, we understand your joy and your pain. Getting rid of the accumulated snow is a daunting task. Snow removal equipment, which includes snowblowers, has become a necessity. They are much easier to use than snow shovels as they don’t hurt your back.
It would help if you spent extra bucks on buying a new snow blower. Not pocket-friendly, we know. But what, isn’t there another option? There is. You can buy a used snow blower. You need to check a few things before buying a used snowblower. Let’s look into them.
Things to note before buying a used Snowblower
You’ll be investing in a product, and thus, you need to make sure that it is user-friendly. A new snow blower will have advantages as the old ones might become slow or inefficient in their tasks. So, make sure that your snow blower has the main safety features.
Also, the old models have now been upgraded with an electric start option (which saves your back and shoulders and is thus preferable), so check that too. Carry a card with you to try the electric starter on the blower. Make sure it spins over fast enough (which is really important) to start the blower.
2. Check the Tires
Some tires have good grip, and you’ll need chains on some tires. Make sure that the tires aren’t cracked much. If there are too many cracks on the tire or if air comes out of them, don’t go for those. If you want to use them, you need to replace the tires for your safety, which will cost you heavily as the tires are not cheap.
While looking at the blower, ensure that the wheels are not jammed on the shaft; else, the problem may arise later.
Airless tires are always preferred over pneumatic air-filled tires as repairing and refilling problems will be eliminated. Airless tires never go flat, and no regular maintenance required.
Don’t buy a snow blower that makes too much noise. You might say, “The used snow blower is costing me less. Let me buy it for the time-being and I’ll repair these small problems later."
Let me tell you; it will not be a wise decision because, more often than not, these repairs will cost you more and will exceed your budget limit, even that of a new snow blower.
No one wants a rusted machine. But, rust is inevitable. Snowblowers with thinner metal tend to rust more easily. Rust may not be visible from the outside. Check the parts under the top cover. Sometimes, hairline rusts may also cause problems. Make sure the owner fixes them before selling it. Also, if fuel lines and clamps are rusted already, you need to replace them.
Small cracks are enough to cause big issues. If the blower rots and you continue blowing the snow, auger belts may come off the pulleys. In that case, belt replacement is not the solution, but replacement of the whole front part of the blower is. Make sure the metal is intact in important places. You can weld the cracks, but if needed, you have to replace them.
6. Previous Maintenance
If the snow blowers had not been maintained properly, problems could arise. If it had been out in the whole summer or monsoon, parts might not function properly. The pull cord might be frayed or you cannot move the gear shift in that condition. If the carburetor or the fuel tank is overloaded with water, then it is going to cause trouble.
Headlights are optional. You might want one in your snow blower so that you can blow the snow in dark conditions too. Basically, headlights give you the flexibility to do the task anytime.
Check whether the chutes are plastic or steel. Plastic discharge chutes are better and have a longer life than their steel counterparts. As the plastic chutes are slippery, snow doesn’t stick to it. Steel chutes will require cleaning in regular intervals.
9. Check for Brands
Some brands are built to last. Buy those brands which promise long life and durability without compromising with the safety features.
This is another crucial factor to consider. Try to buy a user snow blower when there is snow so that you can test the snow blower before investing in it.
11. Try it
Have a demo before actually buying it. It is advisable to use it on snow to check whether it’s working properly. Make sure the augers work correctly in the snow. If you don’t check, you might find out that the blower isn’t working because of a damaged gearbox or pulleys or belts. Thus, always have a demo before buying these snow blowers.
We have provided you with quite a long list to check while buying a used snowblower. Make sure you check these along with your own priorities and preferences. Ensure that the nuts and bolts are in proper condition.
We don’t want you to get tricked into buying the wrong product. Don’t underestimate the old snow blowers; with some care, they work amazingly. Remember, everything lasts with proper handle and care, and used snow blowers are no exception.
About the Author
I am Tim, a weather enthusiast who loves to watch hurricanes and all other harsh weather conditions. I studied B.Sc(Meteorology) at the University of Miami. With excellent knowledge of Weather Forecasting, Meteorology, and Environmental Science, I am currently working in San Francisco as a Meteorologist. Also, I am a member of The Weather Channel and AccuWeather. In this blog, I will write a detailed review of Weather instruments that you need for survival and other activities.