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Ariens snowblower engine replacement recommendations please.

steven1955

LawnSite Member
Location
Hockessin, DE
Hi folks. My question is at the bottom, but first some history.

I have two nearly identical Ariens small frame two stage snowblowers dating from the mid to late 1960s. All parts will interchange except one has a replacement 5 hp Tecumseh Snow King engine and the other has the original 7 hp Tecumseh Snow King engine. Yeah, I wish they were the large frame versions, but they were free. And parts are still available too.

The 5 hp was my dad's. He replaced the original 5 hp Snow King engine when it threw a rod due to a failed governor, and the replacement 5 hp, dating from around 2000, has always seemed underpowered. (I think year 2000 horses are smaller than year 1965 horses.) It ran OK in the fall, but now it runs poorly. Probably carb issues, but I'm not touching it until the spring unless I have to.

The 7 hp was my father-in-laws, and it's in pretty good condition except for the engine. It burned oil when I got it, was hard starting, and now I can't get it to start at all.

Rather than live with the underpowered 5 hp ugly snowblower I think I want to re-engine the 7 hp nice looking 7 snowblower, and use the ugly one as a parts snowblower. I don't mind doing some work to adapt a different 7 to 8.5 hp engine, especially if it's quieter or vibrates less.

What 7 to 8.5 hp engine would you folks recommend?

I'll consider new or even a good used motor.
 

rotti1968

LawnSite Member
Location
branchville nj
Give Ariens a call and they can give you info for a direct replacement engine for that unit. I may even be able to get you that info tomorrow, we are an Ariens/ Gravley dealer and I'll do a little digging for ya. I would need if you have it the mod# and ser# of the unit you want to replace the engine on.
 
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steven1955

LawnSite Member
Location
Hockessin, DE
I know I can get a direct bolt on Snow King engine, but there are two issues I have with that.

The first issue is that I don't really love the Snow King engine even though it's supposedly one of Tecumseh's best engines. Both the 5 hp and the 7 hp, when it ran, were very noisy and vibrated a lot. (Based on some postings on these forums some would argue any Tecumseh engine is none too good.)

The second issue is I'd like to save some money. (Read that I'm currently unemployed.) I think that there are workable options that will cost less than the official bolt on Tecumseh engine, and hopefully reduce noise and vibration a bit too.

I do know that if I change to another engine I'll likely have to reconfigure the chute control, which my father had to do when he replaced the original 5 hp Snow King with the year 2000 5 hp Snow King engine. I may also have to reconfigure the engine mounting.

That being said, I'll see if I can't get the model numbers off the snow blowers tomorrow.

I did check and saw that there are now overhead valve Tecumseh Snow King engines where the cylinder is canted over instead of vertical. (Is that only Tecumseh in name?) There are also some B&S snow blower engines. I am sure there are others too.
 

betmr

LawnSite Bronze Member
Location
Piscataway, NJ
What you want to do, takes research that really only you can do. If you don't want direct replacement, You are going to need...Crankshaft diameter, mounting bolt pattern, and clearances. Then look for an Engine that meets these criteria. Personally I think you will do yourself a big favor by using whatever Ariens says will fit.
 

topsites

LawnSite Fanatic
Unfortunately there are no two ways about it, you get a bargain engine or spend big money for reliability, just how it is...
So I suppose it all depends on how much money you want to spend, but from the sound of things you don't seem to mind
working with these bargain engines, more so if the machine doesn't get used a whole lot, probably as well off.

Look at it this way, if the machine sits the better part of the year you're going to have engine and carburetor problems,
I have these issues you speak of with most of my machines that sit around a lot, too, and so I use cheap engines on some.
Not sure if Aggri supply carries any, Grainger, Tractor supply..?

But I'd check out Harbor Freight, they don't carry a big selection but they have a few
nicely priced bargain engines, I'm talking $150-2-300 and it's over, brand new engine.

Another place might be Northern Hydraulics, thou theirs tend to be a little pricier,
I can't say for sure but $3-400 crossed my mind, anyhow there's no telling from
the house so you'll just have to go look at their selection.

Last but not least you might also check out Small engine warehouse, I do believe
they as well carry certain bargain brands, and perhaps Ebay.

You can do most of this online, Briggs & Stratton might be a brand to consider.
 
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steven1955

LawnSite Member
Location
Hockessin, DE
I think I may have given the wrong impression. While I need to save some money, I don't think I want a bargain engine. I've had too many carb issues over the years with the Snow King engines, most notably clogged jets. I just had to replace the carb in a friends five year old Snow King engine due to alcohol/water related corosion. I have a Honda generator that I totally ignore, run old gas in it, and it just starts easy and runs no matter what.

What I meant was that if I go to the local Ariens dealer I'll be paying top dollar. And if I were employed I don't mind supporting them. They're good guys. But now money is tight, so I was going to buy through an internet dealer. At the same time I was hoping to get a nicer motor than the Snow King that's in there now.

I've done engine swaps in cars. I don't think swapping to a different engine in a snowblower will be beyond me.

So, what snowblower engine brand and style do you guys like?

Is the new style Tecumseh Snow King engine with the slanted cylinder any good? Or any better than the old vertical cylinder Snow King engine?

Is the Briggs snowblower engine a better engine than the Tecumseh?

Is a Honda engine, at least the ones they sell today, better than the Snow King?

Are any of the cheap (Harbor Freight) even worth looking at?
 

LarryF

LawnSite Bronze Member
Location
Lincroft, NJ
My suggestion is to forget about them and wait another month or so to buy an end-of-season new snowblower from HD or Lowes. I did exactly that a couple of years ago when I was considering spending money on one I had originally bought in the early 1980s. It seemed to me that there had been considerable improvement in snowblower design and manufacture in the last quarter of century, and HD was clearing out its snowblower inventory by selling them for 35 percent off the regular price. So instead of wasting $500 on the old 20-inch, 8HP clunker, I gave it away and spent $700 for a brand new 24-inch, 11.5HP unit. With all the snow we've had in NJ this winter, I'm sure glad I made that decision. If you are really considering investing in the repair of 50-year-old snowblowers, I think that would be a mistake. Normally, I would not advise buying lawn equipment from HD or Lowes, but let's face it, a snowblower gets fired up only 3 or 4 times a year by a homeowner, which I assume is how you will use it. And if it's to be used commercially, then there should be little doubt that you should give up on the old ones and buy something new.
 

GravelyNut

LawnSite Bronze Member
Location
Wet part of FL
Depending on the shaft size, you could try a Kohler CH270. It puts out about 6 HP under load and would work in the winter. They are setup for warm weather or by changing the air intake housing intake opening position, use in the winter. Cost for one new is under $300.
 
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steven1955

LawnSite Member
Location
Hockessin, DE
rotti1968, here are some of the model and serial numbers you asked for. Due to age I think some of the tags are missing.

The 7 hp:
On the blower: Model 10995, s/n 035352
On the drive unit: No model number found, s/n 011903
On the engine: Model H70-180067 (or H70-130067), s/n 9238 06064

On the 5 hp:
On the blower: No model number found, 7-10M144880
On the drive unit: No model number found, 10M5013409

Do any of these numbers help?
 
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