How to Store Your Cub Cadet Snowblower in the Off-Season

Cub Cadet 526 SWEAt the end of a long, cold, and challenging winter, few household chores are more exciting than preparing the snowblower for storage during the spring thaw and throughout the warmest months of the year. Whether it’s lubrication, cleaning, or replacement of key snowblower parts, this process is absolutely crucial in order to prevent unwanted damage, costly repairs, and excessive in-season maintenance at the start of the next winter season. Though snowblower maintenance and storage tips vary between different models and configurations, there are a few general guidelines that work for owners of single-stage, two-stage, and three-state Cub Cadet models currently on the market.

For Full Storage Details, Always Consult the Owner’s Manual

Though there are a few general guidelines that apply to virtually all Cub Cadet snowblower models, the best source for specific pre-storage maintenance routines is the Cub Cadet owner’s manual. For information on specific parts replacement, fluid changes, lubrication and more, consult this owner’s manual before beginning any storage procedure. It’s simply the best way to get the job done right the first time, preventing unwanted damage and maintenance as the snowblower sits unused throughout the spring and summer months.

Basic Tips for Single-Stage Snowblowers

Cub Cadet’s single-stage snowblowers, often referred to as the 1X series, are a perfect option for homeowners who have smaller areas to clean and don’t require the type of raw power and size needed in snowier climates or commercial enterprises. These snowblowers are also pretty easy to prepare for off-season storage. These preparations include:

1. Checking and Replacing the Shave Plate

The shave plate comes into direct contact with the ground and is often a crucial part of scraping the last bit of snow from the surface and discharging it away from the driveway or walkway. This means it can also become worn or damaged during the course of a typical winter. Tilt the snowblower back and inspect the shave plate for signs of corrosion, damage, or excessive wear. If necessary, adjust or completely replace the shave plate so that it’s ready to go next winter.

2. Check the Auger and Drive Belt

The auger comes into direct, routine contact with snow and can show signs of wear at the end of the winter. Thoroughly inspect the 1X snowblower’s auger paddles and replace them if they show serious signs of wear and tear. Also use this opportunity to check the snowblower drive belt for similar damage, replacing it if it shows signs of fraying or general wear.

3. Get Replacement Parts Ordered and Installed

Any replacement parts required by the snowblower should be ordered when inspecting the snowblower prior to off-season storage. Install the parts in advance, and then place the snowblower in a dry part of the garage or toolshed until it’s needed next year.

Off-Season Storage Preparations for Two-Stage Models

The Cub Cadet 2X series requires its own considerations prior to off-season storage in a garage or toolshed. In addition to checking the shave plate, auger paddles, and drive belt, as was recommended with the 1X series, operators should be sure to pursue a few additional checks before placing the equipment into storage.

1. Drain Fuel from the Snowblower

Fuel should never be left in the snowblower during the off-season. Doing so can promote corrosion around the fuel tank, and it can actually expose the snowblower to a greater potential for debris and damage at the start of the next winter season. Instead of leaving leftover fuel in the tank, use a siphon pump to drain all remaining fuel into an approved, eco-friendly disposal container.

2. Lubricate the Snowblower’s Gear Shaft

To prevent corrosion, the gear shaft should be coated in a mild lubricant prior to off-season storage. This is also a great time to check the rubber friction disc for wear and tear that might have resulted in cracking or other damage.

Guidelines for Single-Stage, Two-Stage, and Three-Stage Snowblowers

Finally, there are some excellent maintenance recommendations for all Cub Cadet snowblowers regardless of their 1X, 2X, or 3X architecture. The company always recommends a full oil change at the end of every winter, for instance. The snowblower’s spark plug should also be checked for wear and tear. If it shows no signs of damage or wear, it should at least be cleaned and prepared for the next winter season. Finally, give the snowblower a thorough but gentle cleaning that removes built-up grime, ice, and debris from throughout the previous winter season.

For Cub Cadet Parts and More, Consult offers an excellent resource to Cub Cadet snowblower owners in the form of an online parts lookup tool. Whether by engine type, part number, or model number, equipment owners will quickly and easily find exactly what they need to keep their snowblower in excellent shape throughout off-season storage so that it can hit the ground running when next year’s winter weather begins in earnest.

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