Working with Honda’s powerful HS1366i snowblower is pretty easy, even for those homeowners who are new to snowblowers altogether. Before getting started, however, snowblower operators should become familiar with the controls and learn the basics about starting, adjusting, operating, and turning off the equipment. With a solid understanding of the basics, snowblower owners can avoid major safety pitfalls and ensure their equipment avoids damage and lasts for many years into the future.
Remember, Safety Always Comes First When Clearing Snow
The snowblower should always be started outdoors, in an open area free of obstacles or debris. Further, the snowblower should only be started on a flat, level, and solid surface. Starting the equipment on the proper surface prevents fuel and oil spills, and ensures that the equipment won’t tip over and injure the operator. To further prevent injury, always dress appropriately for cold outdoor conditions and make sure to wear protective eyewear throughout operation. Debris can occasionally be launched into the air at a high rate of speed, and often the only line of defense is appropriate attire and protective gear.
What to Do Immediately Before Operation
Getting started with the snowblower doesn’t mean turning the engine on right away and proceeding to remove snow. For the safety of the operator, the integrity of the equipment, and the efficiency of snow clearing work, it’s important to check a few key components ahead of time:
– Examine the snowblower for any potential leaks or damage, and fix anything that might cause serious mechanical or safety problems during the upcoming snow-clearing task.
– Check the intake chute, discharge chute, and auger housing for any debris or accumulated ice and snow that should be cleared prior to operation.
– Check for broken bolts, and make sure that all hardware fixtures are properly tightened and in place. Also make sure to check skid shoes, the auger, and battery electrolyte levels to ensure their integrity before starting the engine.
– Check the work area for any pets, toys, rocks, or other debris that might cause serious damage or injury during operation.
A Guide to Starting the Engine
The first step to clearing snow of any depth is simply getting the engine going, which can be accomplished in a few simple steps.
1. Make sure the drain knob is tightly secured, then turn the fuel valve to the “on” position and put the shift lever in the “neutral” position.
2. Turn the engine switch on using the snowblower key, and then release the switch after the engine has started. The engine switch should automatically set itself to the “on” position.
3. Move the throttle lever to “slow” and gradually warm up the engine prior to use.
Operating the HS1366i Snowblower’s Controls
The great thing about the Honda HS1366i is that its controls allow for pretty intricate snow clearing work. From the auger height adjustment process to the turning procedure, here’s what operators should know before getting started.
1. Turning the Equipment
Steering is accomplished by squeezing either the left or right steering lever. The firmness of an operator’s grip will determine how tight or gradual the turn is. To make a full U-turn and go back over an area that was already cleared, simply squeeze one of the turning levers very tightly until the equipment has made an about-face. For a gradual turn to cover the corners of a lawn or driveway, squeeze the left or right lever more gradually until the snowblower is in the proper position. Then proceed straight ahead until the next turn.
2. Snow Clearing Modes
Operators can choose either an “auto” or “manual” clearing mode. Generally, “manual” is the best choice for wetter or deeper snow accumulations, since this allows the snowblower to move only at the operator’s preferred speed. The “auto” mode is appropriate for lighter and less dense snow accumulations, and makes the equipment easier to push forward throughout the task.
3. Skid and Scraper Adjustments
The skid and scraper can be adjusted based on the type of surface being cleared, but this must be done manually rather than with an operator control. The Honda user manual offers specific instructions for adjustment of skid and scraper bolts, and offers guidelines for appropriate adjustments based on pavement or surface type.
4. Auger Housing Adjustments
Clearing snow often means adjusting the auger housing to accommodate lighter or heavier accumulations. The auger housing control switch can be adjusted up and down, and the auger will move in a corresponding direction. Pull the control upward to raise the auger to either a high or medium height, or push it down to lower the auger its lowest height from the ground based on the type and depth of snow accumulations.
Continue Learning About Snowblower Operation in the Next Article
For more information regarding operation of the Honda HS1366i snowblower, be sure to look for the second part of this series. The second article will cover even more information that can help make it easier to clear snow at all depths throughout the winter.
For OEM Parts and Service, Visit HondaLawnParts.com
HondaLawnParts.com offers its snowblower customers a great collection of OEM parts, each of which can help with regular seasonal maintenance and off-season storage of the equipment. Be sure to visit the site and use the parts lookup tool to find the highest-quality, most compatible part for the HS1366i or any other model.