Tecumseh HM80 burning oil - Snowblower Forum : Snow Blower Forums
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post #1 of 15 Old 12-10-2016, 03:45 PM Thread Starter
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Tecumseh HM80 burning oil

I acquired a '73/'74 Ariens 910018 with a Tec HM80 (155020) and 24" Sno Thro attachment last March. Checked the RMPs, running at 3450, but noticed it was burning oil. Took the cylinder cover off to inspect and found a 1/2" x 1/4" horizontal groove about the shape of a small olive pit on the cylinder wall just above the point where the piston bottoms out. I wonder what would have caused that? Otherwise, no scoring.

Cleaned it up while I had it open, changed the oil and ran it with the mower attachment this summer - about 45 mins per week. Maybe 10 or so uses. I checked the oil level after each use once the oil had cooled off and had a chance to settle back down into the crankcase. The oil level drops about 1/4 of the way down the dip stick between the "full" and "add" markers. I always add a bit more oil to top it off. I've been running it with Castrol 5w30 (not synth). Spark plug needed regular cleaning as well, but always started.

Changed the oil (which was very black) this week, installed the Sno Thro and ran the engine for about 3-4 mins and saw none of popping or blue smoke that I witnessed in the summer. I'm assuming the colder weather would explain that. I also picked up the vac and shredder/grinder attachments recently that I hope to use this upcoming summer. My understanding is that these attachments, esp. the vac, are particularly demanding on these 8hp Tecumsehs.

So in getting to my question(s), is this oil burning issue a progressive problem leading to the ultimate demise of the engine, or will it keep chugging along as long as I maintain oil levels and change it regularly? Will using the vac and shredder attachments compound the problem? Re-power?

2010 Ariens Deluxe 27
1974 Ariens 8/24
Toro S200

Last edited by King285; 12-10-2016 at 10:52 PM.
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post #2 of 15 Old 12-10-2016, 04:33 PM
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Used Engines are out there cheap. Don't sweat it, and keep an eye on the oil level.

Last edited by Jackmels; 12-10-2016 at 04:38 PM.
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post #3 of 15 Old 12-10-2016, 05:00 PM
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Hi King,
Don't know what could have caused your bore damage but I see no reason to keep right on using it.I have a pushmower with a Briggs engine that has a severely scored bore that actually burns very little oil-you can smell it a little,but you can't see it.I might add oil every third time I use it,but I don't let it drop very low.The bore is so bad it should smoke like a death-row inmate,but it doesn't.

How are valve guides and cranks seals?What did your head gasket look like when you pulled the head.Did you replace it?Did you check your crankcase vent for proper operation.Are the oil drain holes clogged in the vent cover?Your bore damage may not be the source of ALL of your oil burning,maybe just a contributor.

Oil burners don't bother me until it gets so bad it gags me or the neighbors complain.But,in my own experience,I've seen more Tecumseh Snowkings with blocks ventilated by the connecting rod than oil burners.

I'm not a big fan of 5w-30 oil in any Tecumseh engine used in warm weather-synthetic or not.Straight 30w is the way to go in temps above 40 degress F.Just my opinions,your milage may vary.Cheers.
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post #4 of 15 Old 12-10-2016, 05:05 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jackmels View Post
Used Engines are out there cheap. Don't sweat it, and keep an eye on the oil level.
Just out of curiosity,what does a used HM80 go for in your neck of the woods?
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post #5 of 15 Old 12-10-2016, 05:17 PM
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I have them $100 and up for 8-10 hp engines.
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post #6 of 15 Old 12-10-2016, 09:34 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike C. View Post
How are valve guides and cranks seals?What did your head gasket look like when you pulled the head.Did you replace it?Did you check your crankcase vent for proper operation.Are the oil drain holes clogged in the vent cover?Your bore damage may not be the source of ALL of your oil burning,maybe just a contributor.
I cleaned, lapped, and checked lash clearances on the valves at that time and I would say that the valve guides did not seem to be worn, i.e., no play in the valve stems (if that's what you're referring to).
Gasket showed no visible damage. I haven't replaced it, though I've been meaning to. Crankcase vent mesh filter (can't recall what the actual name of that parts is) was rather black, perhaps I should clean it. Any suggestions on good method on doing that- soap/water? I don't think the drain whole plugs were clogged, but wouldn't hurt to take another look.

Thanks for the detailed suggestions, Mike C. This is why novice enthusiasts like myself love this forum.

2010 Ariens Deluxe 27
1974 Ariens 8/24
Toro S200
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post #7 of 15 Old 12-10-2016, 09:46 PM Thread Starter
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Just out of curiosity,what does a used HM80 go for in your neck of the woods?
Private sales are in the $150 range (CAN). But those are a crap-shoot.
Haven't seen too many small engine shops advertising them, and those that have were asking as much as $400 for rebuilds or NOS.

2010 Ariens Deluxe 27
1974 Ariens 8/24
Toro S200
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post #8 of 15 Old 12-10-2016, 09:56 PM
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Hi King,
My favorite go-to quick cleaner/solvent for greasy,gunky parts is either carb cleaner or brake cleaner,whichever I can buy cheaper at Walmart.Brake cleaner is nice because it's a zero residue product.Just be careful with it around paint-it will remove that too.Good luck.
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post #9 of 15 Old 12-11-2016, 01:24 AM
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If you are thinking of a repower check Princess Auto. It is the Canadian equivalent to Harbor Freight and a few people have gotten engines from there up in Canada. As others have said, just keep an eye on the oil and you are probably good to go.

Please direct all snow blower questions to the forums and not to me with PMs.
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post #10 of 15 Old 12-11-2016, 09:41 AM
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Off topic but I ran 30w50 in a car I had that liked to drink oil. With 10 30 it was 2 qts in 1000. 30w50 it was .5qts in 3000 miles... knocked at cold start up but made it and is still running at 200k

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