Leaking auger gear case advice needed (Ariens 524) - Snowblower Forum : Snow Blower Forums
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post #1 of 14 Old 10-04-2019, 08:58 AM Thread Starter
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Leaking auger gear case advice needed (Ariens 524)

Hi - I've recently discovered a small drip from the auger gear case. I am looking for some practical advice how to deal with this. I'm debating if actually fixing it is worth it, or if I should just live with having to occasionally add oil. This is a used Ariens 524, about 15 years old, in pretty good shape, but I'm assuming the oil has never been changed. There is still some oil left in the gear case, but not enough (per manual it should be up to the level of screw used to check the oil level). Ariens manual specifies to only use "Ariens special gear lubricant L-2 (Part Number 00008000)," which I understand is no longer available and they only offer an expensive L-3 version of this, which I believe is fully synthetic.

I have a couple of questions. One is: if I were to just live with the leak and keep adding oil as needed, can I simply add the new oil to the gear case, mixing it with the old oil already there (and likely of a different type, most likely not synthetic), or would I need to drain the old oil before adding new?

Second question: if I do need to drain the old oil, I don't really see any way to do that other than by removing and disassembling the gear case. Am I missing something? If anyone can share any tips or links to other info on this, that'd be greatly appreciated.
If I go with trying to fix the leak, it looks like the two halves of the auger gear case have a silicone sealant between them. Ariens manual specifically says to use Loctite 518 gasket maker / replacement, which is again expensive and I've found some mixed reviews of. Can I use instead a much cheaper & locally available Permatex® Ultra Black RTV Silicone Gasket Maker?

Finally, I've already done some investigation on if I really need to use the expensive (and not available locally) Ariens L-3 gear oil. What I've found is that most people opt for alternatives, both cheaper and available locally. Some mentions of specific oils I've found are in this post: https://www.bobistheoilguy.com/forum...&Number=513177. I've also found locally Valvoline™ SynPower™ Full Synthetic 75W-90 Gear Oil (VV975) (https://www.menards.com/main/tools/a...7210865285.htm) that seems like should work. Any advice or comments?

I'm new to this, so would really appreciate any advice on any of the above.
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post #2 of 14 Old 10-04-2019, 10:02 PM
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Where is it leaking? from gasket or one of the seals on sides?
I don't see why you can't just add oil. I use 80-90W gear oil in my Honda gearboxes so can't help with advice there. of course the manufacturer will recommend their brand gear oil.

Yes, you could tip the machine up on bucket ( gas out of tank ) on a platform and brace to drain oil. Otherwise you would have to remove auger assembly

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post #3 of 14 Old 10-04-2019, 10:53 PM
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If it were me. I'd pull the gearbox and replace the seals. But, if you're open to taking an easy way out, the "seems" to work. (Can't vouch, thought it was interesting).
https://youtu.be/3jjfFM9JuSk

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post #4 of 14 Old Yesterday, 09:47 AM
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I use 00 grease, not quite grease, but heavier then gear oil......works great on older stuff.
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post #5 of 14 Old Yesterday, 10:34 AM
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Originally Posted by enigma-2 View Post
If it were me. I'd pull the gearbox and replace the seals. But, if you're open to taking an easy way out, the "seems" to work. (Can't vouch, thought it was interesting).
https://youtu.be/3jjfFM9JuSk
I used this one time on leaking tranny axle seals on a HS622 and it worked. Ran the blower for 2 different times for about 20 minutes and it never leaked again.

used it on a leaky auger gearbox on a HS55 and it did not work since the seal was too bad. split the gearbox and put in new seal and now it does not leak. took several hours because to remove auger assmbly on a 55 you have to remove bucket. what a pain for a simple repair. that's why I tried the stop leak first.

so I am 1 and 1 with this stuff .......depends on seal /gasket condition.

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post #6 of 14 Old Yesterday, 10:57 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by orangputeh View Post
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Where is it leaking? from gasket or one of the seals on sides?
I don't see why you can't just add oil. I use 80-90W gear oil in my Honda gearboxes so can't help with advice there. of course the manufacturer will recommend their brand gear oil.

Yes, you could tip the machine up on bucket ( gas out of tank ) on a platform and brace to drain oil. Otherwise you would have to remove auger assembly
I actually assumed it was leaking from the gasket between the gear case halves, but upon closer inspection, it actually appears to be leaking from one of the side seals. I have now fully cleaned it and will confirm that that is the leak source, but if it is, I guess I will have to replace it. Once I disassemble it, can I reuse the other seal, or do they have to be automatically replaced?

Can anyone comment if I'm stuck buying the seals directly from Ariens, or are there 3rd party alternatives (same question would be about shear bolts, actually)?
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post #7 of 14 Old Yesterday, 10:59 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by enigma-2 View Post
If it were me. I'd pull the gearbox and replace the seals. But, if you're open to taking an easy way out, the "seems" to work. (Can't vouch, thought it was interesting).
https://youtu.be/3jjfFM9JuSk
Thanks for the tip. Looks interesting. I wonder if this would work for leaking side seals as well.
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post #8 of 14 Old Yesterday, 11:17 AM
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Originally Posted by SnowMan55 View Post
I actually assumed it was leaking from the gasket between the gear case halves, but upon closer inspection, it actually appears to be leaking from one of the side seals. I have now fully cleaned it and will confirm that that is the leak source, but if it is, I guess I will have to replace it. Once I disassemble it, can I reuse the other seal, or do they have to be automatically replaced?

Can anyone comment if I'm stuck buying the seals directly from Ariens, or are there 3rd party alternatives (same question would be about shear bolts, actually)?
i bet it wouldn't hurt too much to try that sealer. depends on condition of seal. if you do have to disassmble to replace seal , replace both. with one going bad the other is probably not too far behind.

can't answer your ariens parts questions but lot of others here can.

stay tuned

"It Feels Like Beer O'Clock "
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post #9 of 14 Old Yesterday, 02:25 PM
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I am not familiar with the 524 gearbox but typically the auger shaft oil seals are the last item in the gearbox where auger shaft enters the gearbox. So you may not need to take the gearbox apart, just pry the old seals out. I replaced my impeller shaft seal this way so it should work on your gearbox auger seals too.

You would be best to change the seals. You remove the augers to access the auger shaft. Clean the two sides of the shaft and ensure there are no burrs that could damage the new seals. Then you will need a screwdriver or similar to puncture the seal and pry it out (and oil will come out of the gearbox) and slide the old seal off the shaft. Do the same to the other side. Drain the gearbox as much as possible since fresh oil is better. lubricate the auger shafts and slide the new seals into place in the gearbox even all around. You need a large washer (or seal installer) with a hole to fit over the auger shaft, use a tube or similar from a seal installer kit and lightly tap the seal into place with the tube. It should stop when seal bottoms so don't hit it hard.

L3 is compatible with L2 lubricant so fill the gearbox to the proper level with L3.

Good luck.

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post #10 of 14 Old Yesterday, 07:05 PM
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I second on 00 grease. I use it in my 3, Ariens 10,000 series, which used to leak. Tractor Supply should have it.

Last edited by Landngroove; Yesterday at 07:11 PM.
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