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#487285 - 12/09/05 07:00 AM Ariens Snowblower Gearcase Oil
bdleonard Offline


Registered: 08/20/03
Posts: 27
Loc: Rome, NY
A friend of mine just got a new Ariens 5520E Snowblower for the season, and I gave him a hand getting it set up. While running through the manufacturer's checklist prior to the first run, I noticed that the auger's aluminum gearcase was dry as a bone.

The manual calls for using Ariens L2 gear lube, and a little bit of research indicates that it is a 90W AGMA 5 gear lube. Not having any on hand, and a large pile of snow in his driveway, we filled it up to the appropriate level with some Mobil 1 75W-90 that he had on the shelf.

My question is, should he be concerned with the Mobil 1? I am unfamiliar with AGMA specs, and the AGMA website (www.agma.org) is a bit overwhelming. Will the Mobil 1 do any harm to the gearcase? Ideally this would be put off until the weather improves a bit, but if its urgent I'll let him know that he should do it soon.

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#487286 - 12/09/05 07:37 AM Re: Ariens Snowblower Gearcase Oil
JTK Offline


Registered: 08/14/03
Posts: 7230
Loc: Buffalo, NY
Many of the auger drive worm gears on today's snowblowers are just loaded with grease.

Joel

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#487287 - 12/09/05 07:53 AM Re: Ariens Snowblower Gearcase Oil
Bror Jace Offline


Registered: 05/27/02
Posts: 4857
Loc: Saratoga, NY

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#487288 - 12/09/05 08:07 AM Re: Ariens Snowblower Gearcase Oil
bdleonard Offline


Registered: 08/20/03
Posts: 27
Loc: Rome, NY
OK, reading through that seems to answer the question. The 75W-90 Mobil 1 should be fine for now, and I'll tell him there is no rush to change it. For any other people interested, the best info was in this thread mentioned in the previously mentioned thread (confusing enough for you):
http://theoildrop.server101.com/cgi/ultimatebb.cgi?ubb=get_topic&f=16&t=001725#000011

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#487289 - 12/09/05 09:40 AM Re: Ariens Snowblower Gearcase Oil
oilyriser Offline


Registered: 04/30/03
Posts: 7077
Loc: Ontario, Canada
Mine sucks in water as it cools after use. When I drain it every year, the oil comes out milky green. The EP additives in the gear lube might be corroding the bronze screw, but I don't think it really matters for something that's used less than 30 hours a year.

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#487290 - 12/09/05 11:33 PM Re: Ariens Snowblower Gearcase Oil
Bror Jace Offline


Registered: 05/27/02
Posts: 4857
Loc: Saratoga, NY
oilyriser, I am not sure that the green color is from corroded copper (as you seem to be implying). The factory oil I drained out of our Ariens, with just 8-10 hours and a few months time on it was also green.

The milkiness certainly seems to be an indicator of moisture, however. This is why I don't like to treat this application as a life-long fill, only topping off as needed. [SPAZ!]

If you read through Arien's list of impossible-to-find alternatives to their L2 lube, you'll see most labelled "EP" as in "Extreme Pressure."

This suggests to me that the oil should have an EP additive ... like molybdenum disulphide (suspended solid form of moly).

Maybe Specialty Formulations has something to fill this bill ... but if I could put anything in these augers that i currently know about, it'd be the middle-weight Red Line Shockproof gear oil.

Does the Mobil 1 gear oil smell like sulfur? If that's the case, I wouldn't use it. [Thumbs Down!] If he has this stuff in there already, I'd run it for a handful of hours and then dump it replacing it with a non-corrosive oil like Red Line or whatever MolaKule recommends.

--- Bror Jace

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#487291 - 12/09/05 11:45 PM Re: Ariens Snowblower Gearcase Oil
burnout Offline


Registered: 12/31/04
Posts: 239
Loc: Endwell, New York
I remember tracking the old Ariens gearbox thread LAST year!

During the summer I drained out the factory fill gear oil. It was definitely very green, and mine came out clean as a whistle. (5-10hrs on the unit at that time) I replaced it with generic Coastal 75w-90 from autozone I believe.

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#487292 - 12/10/05 12:09 AM Re: Ariens Snowblower Gearcase Oil
Bror Jace Offline


Registered: 05/27/02
Posts: 4857
Loc: Saratoga, NY
Hey burnout that 'generic' Coastal gear oil is actually pretty good stuff. I suspect they are using a fairly advanced boron-based anti-wear additive package. Safe for extended use (time in the unit).

Isn't it rated GL-3, GL-4 & GL-5? Does it smell like sulfur? [Confused]

--- Bror Jace

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#487293 - 12/10/05 11:32 AM Re: Ariens Snowblower Gearcase Oil
burnout Offline


Registered: 12/31/04
Posts: 239
Loc: Endwell, New York
Actually now that you mention it... I think I do remember it being GL-3 4 and 5 rated. I will check next time I'm in the garage and I remember.

It DOES smell TERRIBLE too, I guess you could say sulphur-like. When I got it on my hands once, even after washing them I couldn't get the smell off.

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#487294 - 12/10/05 03:32 PM Re: Ariens Snowblower Gearcase Oil
oilyriser Offline


Registered: 04/30/03
Posts: 7077
Loc: Ontario, Canada
I put in fresh Canadian Tire synthetic 75w90, and at the end of the season it also came out pale green, but I don't worry about it anymore. I even looked at the oil under a microscope, and saw the tiny water droplets suspended in there.

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#487295 - 12/10/05 04:57 PM Re: Ariens Snowblower Gearcase Oil
Mike_dup1 Offline


Registered: 11/17/02
Posts: 3011
Loc: USA-Michigan
Often mfg.'s will use a oil/lube with a dye in it at the factory. Makes it easy for them to identify and cut down on the wrong lubes used on the lines.

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#487296 - 12/11/05 07:52 PM Re: Ariens Snowblower Gearcase Oil
bdleonard Offline


Registered: 08/20/03
Posts: 27
Loc: Rome, NY
The Mobil 1 definitely had a bit of a sulfur smell to it (in fact Mobil says right on their website that it contains a sulfur-phosphorous additive package). I'm certainly not concerned with the Mobil 1 for the time being, but once we decide on a suitable alternative, I'll suggest that he change it out. I'd love to hear Molakule pipe in with his suggestions, perhaps I'll send him a PM.

- Brad

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#487297 - 12/15/05 06:46 AM Re: Ariens Snowblower Gearcase Oil
Bror Jace Offline


Registered: 05/27/02
Posts: 4857
Loc: Saratoga, NY
burnout, all gear oils are gonna be at least as smelly as motor oils ... but the sulfur oils smell two to three times nastier than the Coastal gear oil I have. If you could smell them both side-by-side, I think you'd understand what I'm getting at.

--- Bror Jace

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#487298 - 12/15/05 10:34 PM Re: Ariens Snowblower Gearcase Oil
1 FMF Offline


Registered: 08/12/02
Posts: 1489
Loc: CT
for something like this i'd use outboard/outdrive gear oil, they do real well at preventing corrosion and still lubricating when mixed with a lot of water. walmart and similar stores usually carry lubrimatic brand oils, 10oz tubes, either 90wt gear oil or 90 hypoid. You can get them at boat stores like west marine, usually for a couple dollars more.

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#487299 - 12/15/05 11:08 PM Re: Ariens Snowblower Gearcase Oil
Extreme-Duty Offline


Registered: 10/14/05
Posts: 291
Loc: Schafflund, Germany
Nothing smells better than synthetic GL-5 gear oil [Razz] . Especially Cognis Emgard (Roadranger EP). [Patriot]

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