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Chipper & Shredder Repair Service
Repairing a chipper & shredder can be intimidating and scary for some users. Sears Home Services is here to help. We can help guide you through simple repairs and maintenance that you can do yourself and help you get your chipper & shredder repaired when you encounter a major failure that you can’t fix on your own.
How do I Maintain my Chipper & Shredder?
Follow the directions in the owner’s manual for your chipper & shredder to complete all maintenance tasks and keep the machine working safely and efficiently.
Here are some general maintenance guidelines common to most chippers & shredders.
- Clean the chipper & shredder thoroughly after each use.
- Wash the debris collection bag periodically with water and allow it to air dry completely before using it again or storing it.
- When the discharge gets clogged, shut off the chipper & shredder engine and clean the flail screen. Remove the debris collection bag and lift the chute deflector. Remove the flail screen from the housing and scrape off debris. Wash the flail screen with water. Reinstall the flail screen and reassemble the chipper & shredder.
- Clean and lubricate the release rod and spring once per year. Use light, general purpose oil to lubricate the parts.
- Clean and lubricate the pivot points on the chute deflector yearly.
- Change the engine spark plug once per season or when the engine runs roughly.
- Replace the oil every season or as directed in the owner’s manual.
- Clean or replace the air filter once per season or as needed.
How to Replace Chipper Blades
Chipper blades wear down over time and need replacing. Follow these steps to replace the chipper blades in a common chipper & shredder.
- Stop the engine and disconnect the spark plug wire. Put on work gloves to protect your hands during the repair.
- Remove the debris collection bag and lift the chute deflector. Remove the flail screen from the housing.
- Remove the chipper chute mounting nuts and pull off the chipper chute.
- Remove the blade mounting screws from the chipper blades and pull off the existing chipper blades.
- Install the new chipper blades and secure them with the mounting screws. Tighten the mounting screws firmly.
- Reassemble the chipper & shredder. Reconnect the spark plug wire.
Why Won’t My Chipper & Shredder Start?
Follow these DIY troubleshooting tips when the engine on your chipper & shredder won’t start.
- Check the position of the throttle lever. Make sure it’s set in the Fast position.
- Move the choke lever to the Choke position if you’re starting the engine when it’s cold. When starting a warm engine, move the choke to the Run position.
- Press the primer bulb a few more times to make sure that the engine is getting fuel.
- Make sure that the spark plug wire is securely connected to the spark plug.
- Check that the gasoline in the fuel tank is fresh; stale fuel can become watery and won't ignite well. Replace the fuel in the tank with fresh gas if the fuel has been in the tank for more than 6 months. Use fuel stabilizer to help keep gas fresh in the fuel tank.
- Check the fuel line. The engine won’t get fuel if the fuel line is clogged. Clear or replace a clogged fuel line.
- The engine won’t start if it’s flooded with fuel. Wait 5 minutes and then try to start the engine (without additional priming).
- Use starter fluid to start the engine if recommended in the owner’s manual. Excessive use of starter fluid can damage the engine. But occasional use of starter fluid can help you get the engine started when weather is cold or during the first use of the season.
If the engine starts briefly when using starter fluid and then stops, a clogged carburetor is likely preventing the engine from starting and running. Clean or replace the engine carburetor.
Why does my Chipper & Shredder Run Rough?
When your chipper & shredder cuts out, smokes, idles poorly, vibrates or runs erratically, it could have one of these problems.
Discharge Area Clogged Up
Stop engine immediately and disconnect the spark plug wire. Clean flail screen and inside of the discharge opening. Check for a foreign object or limb lodged in the impeller and remove it.
Engine Needs a Tune-Up
Replace the engine spark plug. Clean or replace the air filter. Change the engine oil to keep the engine running smoothly. Tune up the engine at least yearly to keep the engine in top shape.
Stale gasoline can clog up the carburetor on your chipper & shredder. Use fuel stabilizer to keep gasoline fresh and prevent carburetor problems.
When your carburetor is gummed up, clean or replace it.
Follow these steps to clean the carburetor.
- Move the chipper & shredder to a well-ventilated area.
- Wear work gloves to protect your hands.
- Disconnect the spark plug wire.
- Remove the air filter cover, air filter and air filter housing.
- Clamp off the fuel line to prevent gas from leaking through the line and pull the fuel line off the carburetor.
- Slide the choke control plate off the carburetor mounting studs and disconnect the choke linkage from the control plate and carburetor.
- Disconnect the throttle rod return spring and remove the throttle rod from the carburetor.
- Remove the carburetor mounting nuts and slide the carburetor off the engine. Place the carburetor on a clean work surface.
- Disassemble and clean the carburetor using a carburetor kit. Remove the fuel bowl mounting nut. Pull off the carburetor fuel bowl and gasket. Slide the float pin out and remove the float and float valve. Unscrew the main jet. Dump the main jet and emulsion tube out of the central column. Remove the plastic throttle stop and then pry the plastic metering plug out of the carburetor. Spray carburetor cleaner into the carburetor body, fuel bowl and all of the small brass orifices in the carburetor. Wipe the carburetor and fuel bowl clean with a clean shop towel. Be sure that all the brass orifices are clear of debris and varnish.
- Rebuild the carburetor. Place the new emulsion tube in the central column with the flat end facing the carburetor bowl. Reinstall the new main jet in the central column and tighten. Push in the new metering plug until fully seated. Reinstall the throttle stop screw. Thread it in until the throttle stop screw protrudes out the other side about 1/16-inch. Insert the new spring on the new float valve and snap the new float valve into the new float. Attach the new float to the carburetor using the new mounting pin. Place the new bowl gasket in the channel on the carburetor body. Reinstall the bowl on the carburetor using the mounting nut. Tighten the bowl nut firmly.
- Reinstall the carburetor and reassemble the chipper & shredder engine.
Sometimes, it’s more practical to replace the carburetor instead of cleaning it. If the price of the carburetor is reasonable, replace it instead of cleaning the carburetor.
If you’re not confident that you can safely troubleshoot and repair your chipper & shredder, have a service provider perform the service for you.
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