Extension cord to electric start snowblower?

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  #1  
Old 07-09-12, 07:46 AM
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Extension cord to electric start snowblower?

Hello,

I have a large snowblower that I store in my shed in my backyard. It has an electric start on it but it has to be plugged into the wall (I have an outlet on the outside of my house). I tried using a long extension cord (one of those 50 foot, orange ones from Home Depot) to plug it in but it won’t draw any power, however if I drag the snowblower over to the plug and plug it in using the cord that came with it, it will start. Is there some sort of extension cord I can get that will draw enough power to start it?

Thanks!

Nathan
 
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  #2  
Old 07-09-12, 08:03 AM
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There's no reason why a heavy extension cord shouldn't work. For that usage I would think even a lighter gauge cord would be ok. Are you sure the extension cord you have is working? Test it with some other device.

Do you hear a click when trying to start? Does it do anything?
 
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Old 07-09-12, 08:04 AM
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I'd think a heavy gauge cord would work - how heavy is the one you're using?
 
  #4  
Old 07-09-12, 08:12 AM
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Yeah, I know that the extension cord I'm using works ok, I've tested it with other stuff. I don't know how heavy of a cord it is (it's one of those standard orange Home Depot 50 or 100 foot cords, if that helps--how would I tell how heavy it is?).

Nothing happens when I push the starter , no click or anything. Is there such a thing as a heavy duty extension cord that Home depot or whatever carries? Should I try that?

Thanks,

Nathan
 
  #5  
Old 07-09-12, 08:16 AM
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There are all kinds of extension cords. The heavier the wire, the more current it can carry. I would think a 14 gauge cord would work but 12 gauge would be even better. Also, the length of the cord can be an issue as well, never hurts to use the shortest one you can.
 
  #6  
Old 07-09-12, 09:19 AM
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If nothing at all happened when you pushed the button, you probably had a loose connection somewhere, notably one of the plugs not making good contact, or maybe the cord was well worn and had a break inside, "literally wore out from the inside out".
 
  #7  
Old 07-09-12, 11:55 AM
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I also have a larger snowblower with electric start. Most cases, I find that the actual plug at the blower end is tough to get it fully plugged in and can result in poor contact.

I've used a 50ft extension cord (don't remember off the top what size it was) and have only had issues when not getting the cord plugged into the blower tight enough.

For those that have never seen the electric start on these, there is a male plug on the unit (found normally on top of the motor) which is inside a plastic shell to protect it.

The "T" shaped piece with the red button in this pic is where you plug the cord in. The box which protects the plug is on the right.
[ATTACH=CONFIG]1727[/ATTACH]

You can see the prongs a bit better in this pic
[ATTACH=CONFIG]1728[/ATTACH]


What I with mine was I used the 50ft extension cord to get the power to the garage, then plugged the cable that was supplied with the blower (has an end that fits perfectly into the shell) to supply power to the starter.
 
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Old 07-09-12, 12:12 PM
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Thanks Mike, that's exactly what mine looks like. I am going to try what you suggested and make sure it is seated right and I will report back.

Thanks,

Nathan
 
  #9  
Old 07-09-12, 01:33 PM
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Thanks for the help Mike. I was envisioning a permanently attached cord.
 
  #10  
Old 07-09-12, 07:13 PM
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If the extension cord was too thin and exhibiting too much voltage drop, you'd hear the starter motor at least trying to start. But I can't imagine the starter taking more than a few amps, and at 100', a standard (cheap) extension cord should be fine.

FYI, you can buy extension cords in 16, 14, and 12 gauge varieties. 16 being the smallest and cheapest. 12ga get quite expensive (just saw one at my local HD for $65 for a 100' length), but can run larger tools.
 
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Old 07-10-12, 04:10 AM
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Mine doesn't have the ground pin, but it will accept a grounded extension cord. As others have said it's difficult to get an extension cord to make a good connection. If I ever lose the cord that came with it I'll be crankin' by hand!
 
  #12  
Old 07-10-12, 05:15 AM
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I guess I could have posted a picture with it actually on the blower.
It's in a not so easy to access spot where you have to pass the cord through the handlebars or looking down at it, kind of blindly plug it in.

Sounds simple, but I have expressed a few choice words in the blowing snow, trying to get that plug in there tight.
 
  #13  
Old 07-10-12, 06:10 AM
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Preparing a bit early for winter?
 
  #14  
Old 07-10-12, 07:36 AM
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Ha. I'm surprised it took this long in the thread for someone to ask that . Yeah, I've been meaning to look into it since last winter so I'm trying to get an early start to resolve it before the winter gets here.

Nathan
 
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