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Discussion Starter #1
Hello, my name is Rick and i'm new to this forum (was sure to post an introduction.) As a new home owner of about six months, I finally decided to get a snowblower after shoveling my 60ft driveway a few times. We have a two car garage so the driveway is somewhat wide as well (if you are shoveling it sure seems like it anyway!)

After looking around a bit a friend offered me his Snapper 5/22 free of charge. It is currently at the local small engine repair place getting a full tune up. I asked the owner to change the oil and plugs, and to check the belts, grease whatever needs greasing, etc. I will probably to a little paint work on it this summer, just where there are touches of rust...which luckily is not too many places. I can't figure out how to add a picture yet, but will soon. It looks like this one:

https://cd5a26cb38e2f692acf4-1755b9e4a9778d68267568d15a55e9ec.ssl.cf2.rackcdn.com/5485b2c5d4/3-1.jpg

Questions I have:

-What years were these made

-Are they generally reliable and favorably regarded among snow blower enthusiasts?

-Is Snapper generally considered to be an entry level, mid grade, or high end grade of power equipment?

-Anything I can do besides "tune ups" at the shop to keep this thing running tip top?

-What is the most snow I can blow with this thing? Should I keep it under 12' inches?

-Are electric start kits worth the trouble of trying to keep another battery charged? I don't really mind pull starting as long as it works.

Thanks, and will try to take and post some pictures as soon as I get it back from the shop.
 

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Hello, my name is Rick and i'm new to this forum (was sure to post an introduction.) As a new home owner of about six months, I finally decided to get a snowblower after shoveling my 60ft driveway a few times. We have a two car garage so the driveway is somewhat wide as well (if you are shoveling it sure seems like it anyway!)

After looking around a bit a friend offered me his Snapper 5/22 free of charge. It is currently at the local small engine repair place getting a full tune up. I asked the owner to change the oil and plugs, and to check the belts, grease whatever needs greasing, etc. I will probably to a little paint work on it this summer, just where there are touches of rust...which luckily is not too many places. I can't figure out how to add a picture yet, but will soon. It looks like this one:

https://cd5a26cb38e2f692acf4-1755b9e4a9778d68267568d15a55e9ec.ssl.cf2.rackcdn.com/5485b2c5d4/3-1.jpg

Questions I have:

-What years were these made

-Are they generally reliable and favorably regarded among snow blower enthusiasts?

-Is Snapper generally considered to be an entry level, mid grade, or high end grade of power equipment?

-Anything I can do besides "tune ups" at the shop to keep this thing running tip top?

-What is the most snow I can blow with this thing? Should I keep it under 12' inches?

-Are electric start kits worth the trouble of trying to keep another battery charged? I don't really mind pull starting as long as it works.

Thanks, and will try to take and post some pictures as soon as I get it back from the shop.
Yours is entry level to lower mid level but don't worry about it, it's fine. You have a 5hp Tecumseh engine, a good basic engine that everyone on here owns.

I don't know what your shop does in a tune-up, use synthetic oil, have the wheels removed and axles sanded and greased. I only replace belts if they are bad, not routinely. I never replace a spark plug. Ask for the parts back. The shop may give you someone else's parts!

You can do 24" of snow with that. In wet snow the chute will clog. You have a tall chute which is nice. You will slow at the EOD end of driveway.

Electric start is just that, electric start, no battery, you have to plug it in to an extension cord.

After using it, you decide if you want to upgrade. Careful of new with the pretty!
 
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Discussion Starter #3
Yours is entry level to lower mid level but don't worry about it, it's fine. You have a 5hp Tecumseh engine, a good basic engine that everyone on here owns.

I don't know what your shop does in a tune-up, use synthetic oil, have the wheels removed and axles sanded and greased. I only replace belts if they are bad, not routinely. I never replace a spark plug. Ask for the parts back. The shop may give you someone else's parts!

You can do 24" of snow with that. In wet snow the chute will clog. You have a tall chute which is nice. You will slow at the EOD end of driveway.

Electric start is just that, electric start, no battery, you have to plug it in to an extension cord.

After using it, you decide if you want to upgrade. Careful of new with the pretty!
Thanks; Super helpful all around!

I really don't mind doing a pull start as long as the machine actually starts after 2-3 pulls, so I will keep it as is for a while.

24" snow...wow. We recently had about 36" here in VT. What i've been told the strategy is when the snow is expected to exceed your blower's capacity, is to go out and blow mid storm, and then finish up the other half when the storm is done. Thanks again JL
 

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24" snow...wow. We recently had about 36" here in VT. What i've been told the strategy is when the snow is expected to exceed your blower's capacity, is to go out and blow mid storm, and then finish up the other half when the storm is done. Thanks again JL
I like to go out once! And have done 26" with my Ariens 5hp 22" easily though slower and dry. I have found when I go out and do 12" of a 24" snow when I go out later the 12" has filled in and back to 24". That's my sidewalk, the driveway is different and it as bad.
 

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hello rick, welcome to SBF!! you can read the maintenance forums to see what others have done to their blowers with 5hp Tecumseh motors. that will save you a few bucks at the shop. if you can have the shop install an impeller kit, it will help your snapper blow more snow and not clog up when the snow is wet and heavy. being your first snowblower go slow and don't over work your machine, half bucket to 3/4 buckets of snow after the first pass
 
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Welcome to the forum Rick, I have almost the same exact snow blower but mine is the 6hp version, Very solid made machines and have gone through some pretty heavy snow. 2014 was when we got 4 storms in a row and no time between to melt and the first yr I had my house and got this from the old owner and wow did I put mine through a workout and it just kept going. Still use it actually. This is my brother using it before he got his new one with the impeller mod and as you can see the depth of the snow is pretty deep but I have gone through deeper with it.
 

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Welcome to the forum Rick, I have almost the same exact snow blower nut mine is the 6hp version, Very solid made machines and have gone through some pretty heavy snow. 2014 was when we got 4 storms in a row and no time between to melt and the first yr I had my house and got this from the old owner and wow did I put mine through a workout and it just kept going. Still use it actually. This is my brother using it before he got his new one with the impeller mod and as you can see the depth of the snow is pretty deep but I have gone through deeper with it.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nmA0oyCs4xA
Awesome! Thanks for sharing that snow looks DEEP for a little 6hp machine.

Can anyone post a link to where one can buy the impeller mod online? Or is it something that has to be fabricated or ordered through a local shop? Thanks!
 

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Do a search on here, LOT of info and recently, past month or so. You can buy pre-made on eBay or Amazon or make it yourself using SBR, conveyor belting, and TSC has baling belting. Then stainless screws or bolts, washers, torque nuts, and a strip of metal.
 
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My 2 cents...

:icon-clapping-smile Snapper is an old and revered name in lawn and garden equipment.
You have to post ten times before you can post pictures.
My advice is always use non-ethanol gas, use this website to see where in your neighborhood to buy it, Ethanol-free gas stations in the U.S. and Canada and add a gas stabilizer because any gas over 30 days old starts to go stale.
Secondly, sparkplugs are cheap, change your oil and sparkplug every 25 hours and you'll have a reliably starting and running machine. Don't over fill the oil, use 5w30 synthetic and run engine wide open for good lubrication because these engines have a splash lubrication system that doesn't atomize the oil well at low rpm. Enjoy!
 

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Again, thank you all and super helpful. Will definitely order and install the impeller kit ASAP, and the Ethanol Free gas map is awesome, now aware of my local ethanol free spots and will be using them for bikes, boats, and power equipment.

How does the impeller kit work? Smaller tolerances in the second stage mean less space for snow to collect and clog?
 

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Those older Snappers are the best, especially the heavy duty ones that were 8hp and up. Like the 8/24. One of the reasons the older snappers prior to 2004 when Briggs took their name were so good, is because the gap between the impeller and the belly has one of the smallest gaps that was on the market, so they throw snow the farthest. Impeller mods are almost not necessary on the Snappers that's how close the impeller is to the belly. Either way they are excellent workhorse machines.
 

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My 6/22 had about a 1/4 inch gap, the reason you get clogging is ice forms on the surface in the clearance and slows down the throwing snow when it's wetter, The rubber in the mod scrapes the slush off and doesn't give the new slush any place to stick so it throws faster out of the chute preventing it from clogging up. Well that's my understanding of it anyway.
 
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My 6/22 had about a 1/4 inch gap, the reason you get clogging is ice forms on the surface in the clearance and slows down the throwing snow when it's wetter, The rubber in the mod scrapes the slush off and doesn't give the new slush any place to stick so it throws faster out of the chute preventing it from clogging up. Well that's my understanding of it anyway.
So despite the tighter clearance on the older snappers, an impeller mod is still a useful upgrade?
 

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SO.....got a call from my mechanic today.

-Apparently he thinks its a 6hp model. He said he has done a lot of work on these over the years and despite the 5hp label on my Tecumsuh motor he says he's SURE it's the 6HP motor. Interesting...

-Repairs were $296 dollars (Ouch) apparently the carb needed a total cleaning, belts were dry rotted and needed to be replaced, shift linkage had to be replaced, everything oiled/greased, maybe something else I can't remember. I know it has sat for a few years....happy to save an old machine but man; hoping he didn't take me to the cleaners..

Picking up today in anticipation of Fri/Sat slush storm we are getting :)
 

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Ouch, that's a bit $$$ in my opinion, mine IS the 6hp and one a few differences are the choke knob is on the top and all the 5hp had it on the side or the engine, another thing I noticed is the starter motor is larger than the 5hp starters. Post some pics when you can and we'll see what's on it.
 
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Okay...finally got my blower home today. Looks like it was made in 1990.

The guy at the shop claimed he had to call Tecumseh for some parts, and gave them the serial number. He said that that model year (89/90) they made a mistake and used some 6HP blocks that were meant to go with 5hp engines and that my engine was one of those. The top end still looks to be 5hp though, so i'd imagine it's 5hp, even though this guy seems to think it's six.

He changed oil, something to do with the ignition (said flame was orange, and needed to be blue, greased everything up, cleaned the carb, and did a bunch of other stuff.

Runs great! May get a chance to use it this weekend too it's looking like.

Is automotive de-icer (alcohol based) okay to spray in the chute to prevent ice buildup before my impeller mod kit gets in?
 

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Looks good, I think mine was from around 85-86 if I remember right but you can see the slight difference in the heater box.
 
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So what's the consensus from my pictures and story from the mechanic. 5 horse or 6 horse? :)
 

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Picking up today in anticipation of Fri/Sat slush storm we are getting
I understand you are excited to try it out!
especially since you havent yet used it..
but..
I hate to tell you this, but IMO you absolutely should *not* try to use the snowblower this weekend, for three reasons:

1. It wont work, at all.
2. you will be disappointed.
3. It will tell you absolutely nothing about how the machine will work in "real" snow.


2-stage snowblowers simply aren't designed for slush..they dont handle it well at all, many cant throw it at all..
its just not what they were designed to do.

You have a very nice little snowblower!
a quality machine that very likely will throw like a pro..next winter.

with 4" to 18" of *cold* regular winter snow, it will probably do great..

with a thin layer of slush..its not even worth trying.
here is what everyone who has a 2-stage snowblower does with slush in April: absolutely nothing.

it will melt away by itself in a day, or less..

you can try it!
but IMO its not even worth it..
but just remember when it doesn't work, that doesn't mean its a bad snowblower..its not a fair test...because technically, you arent going to get any snow this weekend..you are only going get semi-solid rain.. from the perspective of a 2-stage snowblower, that is no snow at all..

But next winter, I predict it will work great.

Scot
 
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