There are so many ice scratchers out there, but finding the right scratcher for your sled is very difficult. We all have faced the common problems of cheap scratchers like they break when you need them the most. When your engine starts overheating, then you realize that your scratchers are broken. Another common problem I have faced is that my scratchers often drop when I reverse. These are common problems, so when we were testing different ice scratchers for our snowmobile, we were looking to find a good pair of scratchers that would work on every sled. But, that’s not the case. It’s quite a common problem that you purchase a pair of scratchers and they don’t fit your sled because bolts are too large or for any other reason.
So, we tested quite a few ice scratchers and found that Duraflex Ice Scratchers performed really well. It was able to cool down an overheated sled by throwing snow on it. It also worked well with our reverse-powered sled. We went on a ride in the early morning and the surface of the trails was frozen, it looked like we were the first one to ride on that trail, so the scratchers worked well.
The SPI Rail Mount Ice Scratchers were the easiest to install scratchers that also work on snowmobiles with the reverse gear. As I told earlier, we went on a ride in the early morning when the trails were frozen, we used these scratchers to cool down our sled. It also has brackets to hold the scratchers, and we used this feature in the afternoon when the snow became loose, and we didn’t need the scratchers.
The RSI Racing Ice Scratchers also worked well, and they come at a reasonable price, less than $50. Just like every other scratcher, it’s possible that you have to drill holes to install these scratchers because of the different designs. While, in some snowmobiles, there will be no need to drill holes.
So, you can choose any scratchers you want, but be aware that for any scratcher you choose, they’re not universal, you may or may not have to drill holes.
You’ll need to drill holes, no ice scratchers are perfect.
Best Snowmobile Ice Scratchers in 2023
Dura-Flex Ice Scratchers Kit
Dura-Flex ice scratcher kit comes with carbide tips, which are the topmost quality material that is available when we are talking in terms of hardness. Dura-Flex arguably makes the best of these if you ask some people.
These scratchers are pre-assembled and will work just after bolting them to the snowmobile without additional mountings/work required. The good thing with these ice-scratchers is that they will work well with both reverse and non-reverse gear-equipped snowmobiles.
One general precaution while using these is to coat them periodically with a layer of WD-40, or any other water-displacing lubricant, which will ensure that moisture does not rust the scratchers.
While you are storing your sled for a long time, it is advisable to store them in upright positions, which will ensure that these do not get stuck in their positions. They can be operated after you prepare your snowmobile in winter.
Users have reported that these work on all snowmobiles, including Arctic Cat models from the year 1996, and should fit well on most of the popular brands, such as Ski-Doo, Polaris, and Yamaha.
These are the best ice scratchers for snowmobiles and sleds. If you are thinking about buying any, then you can’t ignore them.
I am quite surprised that what the company has achieved to do with this product. For me, it’s an absolute steal of a deal. I am in love with this!
StaCool Ice Scratcher Kit
This StaCool ice-scratchers kit is from StaCool, a brand known for its excellent customer support, and that’s why snowmobile owners like this brand.
These ice-scratchers claim to increase Hyfax life on hard-packed or frozen snow. Adding to this their improved spray pattern over traditional scratchers guarantees that the cooling performance of the engine is increased.
The installation is very simple and quick, just pull these out of the packing and using the proper nuts and bolts, easily bolt them onto your snowmobile and feature CNC machined billet aluminum mounting posts and high-grade, high-tension spring steel scratchers.
A good finishing touch by StaCool is that they have provided detailed mounting instructions on the back of the package, and all the required mounting hardware has been provided.
These can be hooked onto rails unless you decide to lower and use these. Replacement springs are available as well.
If I have to be honest, I am quite surprised with the efficient design of this thing. Everything seems to be inch-perfect for me and I think it couldn’t be done any better than this. So, thumbs up from me!
RSI Racing SS-1 Snow/Ice Scratchers
The RSI Racing SS-1 snow or ice scratcher is designed specifically to cool off the heat of the engine on hardpack trails. This ice or snow scratcher is constructed with billet aluminum and spring steel to offer the snowmobile rider extensive durability and exceptional performance.
The RSI Racing ice/snow scratcher is mounted onto the rear suspension of the snowmobile and effortlessly throws the ice or snow chuck on the hyfax to decrease the heightened temperature in the engine and eventually inhibit the overheating of the snowmobile. It is applicable universally in all the different models of snowmobile.
When RSI Racing Ice/Snow Scratcher is not in use, it mounts over the suspension rail. The package includes the mounting hardware but the replacement springs are discretely available.
How to Install Ice Scratchers in Your Snowmobile
To install an ice scratcher in your snowmobile, we are going to need a pair of ice scratchers, a right and a left one.
We are also going to need a quarter-inch drill that is going to be needed for a smaller piece bit. And then a ⅜ drill piece and a working drill are also required. So, make sure, you have your snowmobile tool kit on your side.
The most important thing to look for is where to install the snowmobile ice scratcher. Deciding the place where to fix the scratcher on the rail is a bit tricky as you won’t want it to interfere with the suspension so you need to place it right where it is at a safe distance from the suspension.
Once you have decided on the spot, on each side make a quarter-inch hole with the drilling machine for the front of the scratcher. When drilling the hole is done, drill on the scratcher and fix it nice and snug into the hole with a socket on the opposite side so it does not spin and come out.
Repeat the same on the other side as well and when you are done installing, keep the scratchers hooked up when you are not sledding through fresh snow.
Things to Consider Before Buying Ice Scratchers
There are a few things one needs to look for while buying ice scratchers for snowmobiles. You cannot simply pick any scratcher available on the market. Below are a few points to look out for.
You must look at the very main and important feature of whether it is going to make and keep your engine cool on hardpack snow. It should prevent your snowmobile engine from overheating while riding.
If your engine overheats, in that case, coolants play a key role in decreasing the temperature. You can check my other article where you can learn about coolants in your snowmobile.
It should Improve hyfax or skid life on hardpack snow
Hyfax or sliders is the hard plastic strip that is attached to the bottom of the rails on the skid. Without these, the aluminum rails would get worn down. With minimal snow, riding down the trail if you smell plastic burning, it is your hyfax. The scratcher should, therefore, increase the longevity of your sliders.
High-grade spring steel scratchers
It is always recommended to get yourself spring steel scratchers. Steel will prevent rusting while spring aids flexibility. Spring steel snowmobile scratchers are super durable and do not get caught up in the snow as they are flexible and can move up and down on rough patches while still spraying good enough snow dust on the sliders. Also, it does not need to be lifted and hooked onto the rails while reversing your sled like rigid ice-scratchers.
It should be easy to install and must have detailed mounting instruction that comes with the scratchers so that it can be installed by neophytes on their own easily and simply.
Some ice scratchers come with a mounting kit for your snowmobile. Make sure, whatever you buy, is easy to install on your sled.
Hooks onto rails
Until conditions require the use, the scratchers should hook onto rails. This feature can help prevent scratching unnecessarily on gravel and when not in use, it can rest.
Why Ice Scratchers Drop or Break During a Ride
Ice scratchers which prevent the sled’s track from overheating are a very important tool for snowmobilers. However, many times ice scratchers drop or break easily during a ride. This has happened to me multiple times when I was riding my snowmobile and I figured that there could be many reasons as to why this is happening.
One of the common reasons is immediate impact with any hard obstacle while riding like coming in direct contact with frozen chunks of ice or hidden barriers; this can cause your ice scratcher to break between your ride. Another reason could be continuous wear and tear over a long period of time where your ice scratcher has come in contact with different obstacles while you ride your snowmobile over a longer duration.
Apart from these, there are other reasons like poor installation or driving your snowmobile at excessive speed. I noticed that my ice scratchers kept dropping when I sped my snowmobile at a faster pace. This allowed me to be careful while I rid my sled with my ice scratchers attached.
So if your ice scratchers are breaking frequently or dropping quickly while you ride your snowmobile, please check for the above-mentioned reasons and ensure that you are careful while you ride your sled.