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How To Assemble and Setup an Ariens Two-Stage Deluxe Snowblower
Congratulations on your new snowblower purchase! Here's a quick and easy guide to assembling and setting up your new Ariens Sno-Thro. This guide applies to model numbers 921031, 921022 & 921013. Remember to read your Ariens Owner's Manual and Briggs & Stratton Owner's Manual for all safety precautions and procedures before using your machine.
You'll need to gather some tools to assemble the snow blower. Here is a list of what you'll need:
Knife or Box Cutter
Small flat-blade screw driver
7/16" deep-well socket
1/2" deep-well socket
9/16" deep-well socket
Open the Lid and Unpack the Box
Using your knife or box cutter, cut around the top edge of the box. Once you've done this, remove the lid. Set this aside. We recommend using the lid to set the rod and chute on top of so they aren't scratched or lost.
Once the lid is off of the box, remove the chute and chute control rod. Then, remove and recycle the cardboard inserts.
Using your knife or box cutter, begin at the bottom of each corner of the box and cut upwards until the entire corner is cut. Do this around all four sides of the box until you can easily access the snowblower. We recommend keeping the sides of the box to stand on because it allows for a clean working environment.
Setup the Snowblower Handle
Remove the plastic packaging from the front of the snowblower handle. Remove the pads on each of the handle levers.
Using your wrench and 1/2" socket, remove the bolts on the top of the handle.
Slowly lift the handle and make sure that the linkage lock stays inside of the bolt. The bolts and nuts should be visible from both sides of the linkage. If you can only see one of them because it's blocked by the linkage, something is wrong. Watch the video for more information
Once the handle is in the full, upright position, push the bolt through the hole in the bottom of the handle. On the plastic bushing, there is a flat side and a curved side. The curved side of the bushing should face the handle. Slide on the bushing, washer and lock washer onto the bolt. Then, hand-tighten the nut onto the bolt. Perform the same steps for the other side of the handle.
Once you've installed and hand-tightened the bolts on both sides of the handle, tighten all four handle bolts down with your wrench and 1/2" socket. Note: Do not over-tighten these bolts! Over-tightening can cause the plastic bushings to crack.
Using your wrench and 7/16" socket, tighten the two bolts on the linkage that we locked into place when we lifted up the handle. Do not over-tighten these but make sure that they are snug.
Remove the Snowblower Information Packet
From the rear of the snowblower, remove the plastic information packet containing the owner's manuals for both the unit and engine along with the unit's warranty card. Keep this in a safe place.
Attach the Snowblower Chute
Remove the plastic packaging from the chute. Hold the chute by the black bar. Standing on the left side of the snowblower, place the chute on top of the chute hole on the top of the snowblower. Remove the two bolts on the back of the area where the chute attaches and slide the black bar across. Hand-tighten the bolts through the black chute bar and back into the snowblower. Tighten these down using your wrench and 9/16" socket. Be careful not to over-tighten because you can bend the black metal rod.
Install the Chute Control Cable
From underneath the plastic packaging on the front of the snowblower, remove the cable. Place the end of the cable into the loop on the top of the chute and twist the cable down so that the end locks into the hook. Slide the rubber boot up the cable to expose the plastic cable lock. Push the lock into the other loop on the chute and slide the boot back down into place.
Install the Chute Control Rod
Using your small flat-blade screwdriver, remove the small metal lock pin from the top of the chute control fitting. Please see the video for the location of the pin and the proper technique to remove. Once it's been removed, set it in a safe place to be used in the next step.
Place the shorter end of the chute control rod into the small hole on the handle of the snowblower. Make sure it goes through the support loop on the other side of the handle. On the other end, line up the hole on the end of the chute control rod with the hole on the chute fitting. You may have to wiggle the chute control rod back and forth to get this into place. Push the pin removed in the previous step into the hole at the end of the chute control rod. Tap this in using your flat punch and hammer.
Test the chute's side-to-side motion using the chute control rod you just installed!
Stand behind the snowblower and use the chute control lever to test the up-and-down motion of the chute.
Check the Oil
Using a clean rag, remove the dipstick from the engine. Make sure that the dipstick reads full. If it does not, check with your Briggs & Stratton owner's manual for the proper oil weight to add to your engine. The weight will depend on the outside temperature of your local area.
Once you've added oil, screw the dipstick back into the engine. Allow the oil to settle into the engine. Remove the dipstick again and check the oil. Add more oil if needed and repeat until the dipstick reads full. Replace the dipstick when finished. Note: Do not over-fill or under-fill, this can cause permanent damage to internal engine parts and this is not covered by warranty!
Add Fuel & Insert the Key
Remove the fuel cap from the engine. Add the proper fuel to your engine. Check your owner's manual for more information on proper fuel usage and maintenance. Never let fuel sit in your engine for very long without use as current fuel only has a shelf life of thirty days. Use a fuel stabilizer if you know the fuel will be sitting longer than that. If you spill when adding fuel, wipe it up quickly using a rag. We recommend using 89-octane fuel in all 4-cycle power equipment. Once you're finished fueling, screw the gas cap back on and lock it into place.
Using your knife or box cutter, carefully remove the key from the handle of the snowblower. Insert the key into the ignition switch on the engine.
Proper Pull/Recoil Starting Technique
When you're ready to start the snowblower, turn up the throttle to full. Turn the ignition to the "on" position and then set the choke to full. Prime the engine about twice and then pull the recoil. Once the engine has started and is warm, turn the choke off.
Proper Electric Starting Technique
Snowblowers do not have fuel injected engines so we need to make sure we follow the same steps when using the electric start as we do when we use the pull/recoil start. Plug in your Ariens power cord or extension cord into the electric start unit. When you're ready to start the snowblower, turn up the throttle to full. Turn the ignition to the "on" position and then set the choke to full. Prime the engine about twice and then press the electric start button. Do not hold this down for long periods of time (longer than 5 seconds), but instead, press it for about 5-6 seconds and release, then try again. Once the engine has started, remove the cord from the electric start unit. When the engine is warm, turn the choke off.
Testing the Snowblower
Once the machine is running, test the auger using the handle lever on the right side of the snowblower (if you were standing behind it). Both side of the auger should spin freely. Inside of the auger, you should see the impeller spinning as well. If there is an issue, never place your hands or other body parts into the auger, impeller or chute.
After you've tested the auger, test the drive mechanism. Test each gear to see how the snowblower responds under the load. Remember that the snowblower engine will throttle up and be governed down while there is no load on the engine.
Proper Engine Shutoff Technique
When you're finished using the snowblower, make sure that the drive and auger are both disengaged. Slowly lower the throttle all of the way down and turn off the ignition.
Write Down Your Snowblower and Engine Model Information
You can find the model and serial number on the identification tag on the rear of your snowblower. Write this information down in your Ariens owner's manual so you can use it for future reference when ordering Ariens snowblower parts or accessories.
You can also find the Briggs & Stratton model, type and code information on the front side of the engine. Be sure to record this information in your Ariens owner's manual as well as your Briggs & Stratton Owner's Manual. It's a good idea to also write your date of purchase into both manuals.