Small Engines (Lawn Mowers, etc.)/snowblower gearcase


Hi Eric,

I have a 1977 ariens snowblower  model 924026, serial number 020391, 8hp 24 inch width. I'm getting it ready for winter and decided to take the blower portion apart to paint it, however I was wondering how can I check to see if my gearcse(cast iron, helicon gear)bushings need changing? Last year I changed the impeller bearing and the auger bushings and everything turns great, I was just wondering if I can see any wear on the gearcase without taking it apart? Is the gearcase a "if it ain't broke don't fix it" thing. I don't want to take it apart and not be able to put it back together!

You have to dis-assemble to check for wear.  Our rule-of-thumb is don't take is apart if it isn't broke.

Just check the fluid.  According to the manual it holds approximately 5 ounces of Ariens no. 90 premium gear lube.

A little Google research yielded the following:
"80W90 is the oil you will use. If, for reasons of leakage in the gear box, you can substitute the oil for "00" grease"

If you know your seals are leaking then we usually opt of 00 grease.  It is a thick greasy oil commonly found in Snapper drive systems.

If the seals are leaking you can try replacing but we often find the bushings and shaft are wore, from general use, as well and new seals often still leak due to the busing and shaft wear...this is where the 00 is useful.

The main point...keep the gear case LUBED and do NOT take it apart if it isn't broke.


Small Engines (Lawn Mowers, etc.)

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Eric A. Jones


Lawnmower Repair . Certified Master Service Technician from B&S. Have 23 years experience on B&S, Lawn Chief, Weed Eater, Echo, Peerless, Wheel Horse, Snapper, Atlas, MTD, McCulloch, Homelite and many other numerous brands. Specialize in electrical repair.


Born and raised in the midwest. Started tinkering with engines when I was about 14 on my Suzuki RM-80. I began lawn mower repair at a small hardware store. I knew absolutely nothing. I read lots of repair manuals and met an older fellow who taught me many lessons. I continued working on small engines through high school and paid my way through college working on mowers at the same hardware store. Decided to get away from the midwest and mower repair so I joined the Air Force. I repaired air traffic control electronic equipment and ended up in Hawaii where I got a part time job at Small Engine Clinic. I gained a lot of experience from the Small Engine Clinic and had a blast repairing small engines. I then took the Briggs and Stratton Master Service Technician test and earned my MST. I then traveled to Wisconsin where I attended the factory update training seminar and received formal training. Continued working on mowers part time as I completed 20 years of military. Retired from the military on a Friday and continued in the lawn and garden industry the next Monday.

MAS Aerospace Operations BA Mathematics AAS Electronic Communications AAS Electronic Technology

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