Snow Blowers Adjust Snow Blower Skid Shoes

Published on February 10th, 2015 | by Turner Anderson


How to Adjust Skid Shoes on a Snow Blower

Skid shoes, also called skid plates, are the adjustable metal or polymer pieces that are attached to each side of the auger housing.

Skid shoes keep the auger from impacting the surface as you’re clearing. If a skid shoe becomes cracked, broken, or worn, replace it immediately to prevent further damage.

Adjusting the Skid Shoes

1) Raise the Auger Housing

Prop up the housing by placing a flat sturdy object (piece of wood) under the scraper bar. Use an object whose thickness is similar to the height that you want to set your skid shoes to.

Raise the Auger Housing
Raise the Auger Housing

2) Loosen the Skid Shoe Bolts

Remove the nut on the bolts that attach the skid shoes to the auger housing.

Loosen the Bolts
Loosen the Bolts

3) Adjust Height and Tighten the Bolts

Adjust the skid shoes to the desired height. Retighten the bolts on both skid shoes. Use a tape measure to determine if they are adjusted evenly.

These skid shoes are reversible. If one side becomes too worn, flip them over.

Tighten the Bolts
Tighten the Bolts

Final Inspection

On final skid shoe inspection, you want to be sure that the auger and housing are off the ground. For safety reasons, if the surface you are clearing isn’t paved, use a higher adjustment to avoid throwing gravel.

This inspection and adjustment should take about 15 minutes. You should be able to do it with either a socket set or wrenches.

Keeping the skid shoes properly adjusted and maintained, could help extend the life of your snow blower by protecting the housing, auger and gear box.

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4 Responses to How to Adjust Skid Shoes on a Snow Blower

  1. Joe says:

    Why don’t smaller snow blowers have skid shoes to prevent damage to the housing?

    • Single stage snowblowers lack skid shoes because their auger paddles and scraper blade directly contact the ground, taking most of the wear and tear. Therefore the auger housing doesn’t need to ride on skid shoes.
      Plus, single stage snowblowers are designed to only be used on paved surfaces, not gravel or rough terrain.

    • Joe,

      Most “smaller” snowblowers are single stage snowblowers. The auger of a single stage snowblower is meant to come in contact with the ground, which is why they are so popular to use on sidewalks and pavement. The auger is usually made of plastic or rubber, so it doesn’t really take much damage when it comes into contact with the ground.

      The main purpose of skid shoes is to help keep the metal auger of a two stage snowblower from contacting the ground. Two stage blower augers are not supposed to come into contact with the ground, which is why they are recommended for gravel areas.

      So – Single stage blowers are made so that the auger contacts the ground, and skid shoes help prevent the auger from touching the ground. You would not want to prevent the rubber/plastic auger from being able to clear down to the surface by raising the auger up off of the ground. This is why you do not typically see skid shoes on the smaller snowblowers.

  2. andrew says:

    The procedure detailed in this article is sloppy.
    Yes, put something under the scraper bar, but a 1/2 block of wood doesn’t help you adjust where the skid plates should live, unless you like resting the side of your head on the ground and guessing.

    Move your machine to a flat surface. Near each end of the scraper bar place something under the bar which defines the height you want.

    Loosen the nuts for the skid plates and lower the plates to the floor. Hold the plates to the floor while you tighten them back up.

    Just getting psyched to use my garage sale bought machine. FYI, I used 2 pennies for my initial setting. I’m not saying this is a perfect height. But it’s got to be better than scraping the ground constantly. the machine as purchased was set with no lift at all, and the scraper bar is somewhat warn.

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