Have a flat on your Honda snowblower? Just got it out of storage to find a tire has come off a rim? Here’s what you need to do to fix it and keep it from happening again.
Tube or Tubeless?
All Honda snowblowers built in the past two decades that use pneumatic tires are tubeless. That means if you have a leak, it’s in the tire itself. It also means that if the tire separates from the rim, the bead needs to be reseated to reinflate the tire.
Tire pressure should be checked before each use, even if you got your snowblower out the day before. If the temperature drops 10°F, tire pressure can drop up to one PSI. Tires can also lose one PSI each month they’re in storage. Honda’s snowblower tires are designed to operate at 8.5 PSI, so it doesn’t take much for the pressure to drop significantly between uses.
Removing and Replacing a Wheel
Removing the wheel will make it much easier to work on the tire. Honda offers some tires and wheels as a complete set, letting you replace a bent rim and tire in one step.
1. Disconnect the spark plug wire to prevent an accidental start.
2. Lift up the rear of the snowblower so that the tires are off the ground.
3. Depending on the model, there will be either a bolt or a Clevis pin on the axle. Remove this part, and slide the wheel off of the axle.
4. Slide the new wheel onto the axle and tighten down the bolt or reinstall the pin.
5. Air up the tire before lowing the snowblower to keep the bead from separating it from the rim.
Reseating a Tire
If the tire pressure is too low, rolling the snowblower can cause the tire bead to roll off of the rim. If that happens, it can be reseated by using air pressure to push out the sidewalls of the tire:
1. Remove the wheel.
2. Hold the tire and wheel in a way that lines the bead up with the rim.
3. Connect the air valve to a compressor or a pressurized air tank. You may need to go over the recommended operating pressure to push the bead onto the rim, but try not to go above the maximum pressure on the sidewall. The goal isn’t to put a lot of air in the tire, it’s to put the air in quickly to get the bead to meet with the rim.
Most of the time, the tire will expand and seat on the rim with just air pressure. If the bead still doesn’t want to seat, there are a few things you can try:
— Apply grease on the inside lip of the wheel. This helps the tire slide up to the rim, and can reduce the amount of air escaping as you air up the tire.
— Remove the valve stem. This reduces resistance when airing up the wheel. Be gentle handling the wheel and tire when reinstalling the stem as the lack of air pressure can let the bead slide off of the rim again.
— Tie a ratchet strap or a rope around the tire tread. This pressure will help push out the sidewall so the bead doesn’t have as far to go to meet with the rim. To tighten a rope, slide a piece of pipe between it and the tire and twist, wrapping the rope around the bar.
It is possible to spray the rim with starter fluid and light it to pull the tire onto the rim, but it should be obvious that this is extremely dangerous. If the tire is that difficult to fit, it’s worth getting a complete wheel and tire instead of setting your snowblower and yourself on fire.
Replacing a Tire
If there are cracks in the rubber or damage to the tire, it should be replaced.
1. Remove the wheel from the snowblower.
2. Push in the tire valve to release any remaining air inside the tire.
3. Use a set of tire levers or spoons to pull the bead over the rim. Once one bead is off the wheel, lift up the tire and pull the other bead over.
4. Fit the new tire onto the wheel using the spoons or levers.
5. Use the process above for reseating the bead. Air up the tire to the correct pressure, then install the wheel on the snowblower.
Getting New Tires and Wheels for Your Snowblowers
www.hondalawnparts.com is a certified Honda Power Equipment dealer, so we’re able to ship any OEM part currently available to any address in the U.S. or Canada. Check out our wheels section to find a replacement for your snowblower, or use our search system to find the right part for your model.