Snow Blower Troubleshooting

Cub Cadet 3X SnowblowerAre you having trouble getting your Cub Cadet snow blower to start? Is it leaving snow behind or not moving it as far as it should? These tips will help you find and fix common problems with these machines so you can get back to clearing sidewalks, driveways and parking lots.

Clogged Chute

If snow stops coming out of the chute, release the auger and drive control, and stop the engine as soon as possible. Remove the ignition key to prevent an accidental start: you don’t want the auger to start moving if your fingers are near it.

Once the auger and impeller have stopped spinning, remove the clean-out tool, usually attached to the back of the auger housing. Use the shovel-shaped end to break up snow and ice that has gathered inside the chute and the auger housing. Once everything is clear, put the tool back in its clip and restart the engine. Run the auger for a few seconds to clear out any remaining snow before going back to work.

Auger and/or Impeller Doesn’t Turn

– The augers and impellers are attached to the drive shafts using shear pins. These are designed to break if one of these parts gets jammed, preventing serious damage to your machine. To change the pins, shut off your snow blower, let it come to a complete stop, and remove the ignition key. Inspect the auger housing for clogs and debris that may have caused the jam and remove them. The pins go into holes on the auger and impeller near the bearing supports, transmission, and belt drive.

– The drive belt may be broken, or it may have stretched to a point that there isn’t enough tension to transfer power to the auger and impeller. Single stage snow blowers have a drive belt underneath the cover on the left side of the auger housing. Two and three-stage snowblowers have a drive belt between the auger housing and the engine.

– Stretched cables can keep the drive from engaging. Newer machines have adjusters on their control cables either next to the handle or at the base of the machine. Loosen the jam nut, then spin the adjuster nut until the auger or drive engages and disengages cleanly. Tighten down the jam nut. On older models, stretched cables must be replaced with new ones.

Drive System Doesn’t Operate

– Check the drive cable as instructed above.

– Check the friction wheel for wear. If the rubber layer is less than 1/8 inch thick, it’s due for a replacement.

– The transmissions used on hydrostatic snow blowers are designed to be maintenance free, offering years of trouble-free use. If the transmission is leaking, it’s due for a rebuild or replacement.

Engine Doesn’t Start

– If you’re using an electric starter, make sure it’s connected to an outlet with an extension cord rated to handle at least 15 amps to handle the motor’s power draw.

– Unlike most Cub Cadet equipment, the engines used in these machines have manual chokes. Closing the choke will help the engine start in cold weather.

– Inspect the spark plug. Check your engine owner’s manual for the correct spark gap, and replace the plug if the electrode or insulator is damaged.

Engine Stalls

– After starting the engine, let it run for a minute or two, opening the choke as the motor warms up. Don’t start using the snow blower until the engine idles smoothly with the choke open.

– Check the holes on the top of the gas cap. If these are clogged, air can’t enter the tank, prevent fuel from flowing into the carburetor.

– Stale fuel can clog carburetor jets and fuel lines and can keep the float bowl from moving freely. Always use fresh fuel treated with a fuel stabilizer. Replace treated fuel after three months.

The Snow Blower Isn’t Picking Up All of the Snow

– Slow down and overlap more with each pass.

– Check the skid shoes and scrape plate to make sure they’re level and at the correct height.

– Check the auger housing for clogs and build up.

Need Parts to Fix Your Equipment?

You can get everything you need for your Cub Cadet by visiting As an authorized Cub Cadet dealer, we sell all the OEM parts and accessories currently available for these machines, and we can ship them to any address in the U.S. or Canada. Our site has a section for commonly ordered snow blower parts, or you can use our search engine to find parts specific to your model. We even have factory parts diagrams so you can see what you’re ordering and where it fits on your blower.

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