Taking your machine to the dealer for service - Snowblower Forum : Snow Blower Forums
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post #1 of 86 Old 03-18-2014, 11:00 PM Thread Starter
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Taking your machine to the dealer for service

What's your thought on taking your snowthrower to the dealer for service? Should I just hand in my man-card now? Should I just lay my nuts down on the ground feed them through the auger of my snowthrower?

I got my Toro Power Max 826 OE off Craigslist mid-season this year. It was bought in 2010 but was sitting covered in a warehouse with old gas, and I'm guessing it hadn't been used in at least one year. Well it started on the first pull and worked fine for me all season (until one shear pin broke on the last storm of the season in heavy wet snow). It would surge badly on anything other than full choke, so I was expecting it needed a carb clean.

In preparing for off season storage, I read through the boards here and decided to give it a go myself. I'm not a mechanically inclined person. I dropped the carb bowl and sprayed the bowl and nut with Gumout carb and choke cleaner. The nut did not have any holes in it, unlike the one in my previous single stage machine. I took out the float and shook it around -- no sloshing. I sprayed up into the two holes visible from the underside of the carb -- the one that the needle sits in, and the fuel inlet (I think). Put everything back together and let it sit overnight because at that point it was late and I didn't want to wake up the kids.

The next morning I went to turn the machine on, so I could warm up the oil prior to draining it and adding new oil ... and now the engine turns but won't start. You've gotta be kidding me. I dropped the bowl again, and realized that even with the fuel shutoff valve OPEN, there was no gas coming out. I took off the float and sprayed into both holes visible from the underside of the carb again and then followed up with compressed air. Put everything back together, and now I could see gas coming down. Tried starting the machine again, and now it starts, but only runs on choke, and even still, it surges and then shut itself off -- behaving as if it was out of gas, even though there was still plenty of gas in the tank.

At this point I'm still guessing it's the carb that's the problem. However, I have no comfort level in taking out the carb, and even less so taking it apart once its out. I checked with my local dealer. They said a full carb tear down and cleaning is included with their annual tune-up package. So is a new spark plug and lube to all the necessary areas.

For *me* (I realize not for many of you, whose posts I've read and can tell you are VERY mechanically inclined), this is a reasonable pill to swallow to keep an expensive machine in good order. I wouldn't pay that fee for my much less expensive single stage, or my basic lawn mower -- I'll just do some basic maintenance on those, and if the machine dies, I suspect I'll just find an adequate replacement on craigslist. But for this $$$ dual stage machine, I think it's worth it. Hopefully after I get a professional carb cleaning this time, I won't need another professional cleaning for a long while, by using Stabil-ized gas and draining the gas at the end of every season.

Anyways, just curious if anyone on this board fesses up to paying for a professional tune-up, or if most of you just take care of it on your own.
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post #2 of 86 Old 03-18-2014, 11:18 PM
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You could consider buying a new carb, possibly for less that having some shop rebuild your original one, and you get to keep your man card.
Just a thought.
Example.
Will need to verify part number.



Wait, the OE is a briggs engine?

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post #3 of 86 Old 03-18-2014, 11:28 PM
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at the end of the day.. I think we all baught snowblowers for one thing... peace of mind.. if dealer mintenance does that for you.. then go for it

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post #4 of 86 Old 03-18-2014, 11:38 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dbert View Post
You could consider buying a new carb, possibly for less that having some shop rebuild your original one, and you get to keep your man card.
Just a thought.
Example.
Will need to verify part number.
Amazon.com: Oregon 50-659 Carburetor Replacement for Tecumseh 640349: Patio, Lawn & Garden

Wait, the OE is a briggs engine?
Yes Briggs engine.

I know I could buy the part for cheaper. But I can't fathom pulling the old one out and putting a new one in myself. Then I'd be at the dealer's doorstep anyways. If someone on this board lived nearby I guess I could consider just paying them to do it, but obviously part of what you pay for with an authorized Toro repair is the warranty of the work.
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post #5 of 86 Old 03-18-2014, 11:39 PM
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True
While some of us cringe at the thought of paying someone that much for a "tune-up", it does come with some piece of mind.
Quote:
Hopefully after I get a professional carb cleaning this time, I won't need another professional cleaning for a long while, by using Stabil-ized gas and draining the gas at the end of every season.
This makes the decision easier.
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post #6 of 86 Old 03-18-2014, 11:46 PM Thread Starter
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True
While some of us cringe at the thought of paying someone that much for a "tune-up", it does come with some piece of mind.

This makes the decision easier.
What made up my mind was hearing that they actually take the carb apart for a full clean. Sure they could be blowing smoke up my a$$ but this is the biggest Toro dealer around here so I am inclined to believe them.
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post #7 of 86 Old 03-18-2014, 11:50 PM
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Originally Posted by beardown34 View Post
Yes Briggs engine.

I know I could buy the part for cheaper. But I can't fathom pulling the old one out and putting a new one in myself. Then I'd be at the dealer's doorstep anyways. If someone on this board lived nearby I guess I could consider just paying them to do it, but obviously part of what you pay for with an authorized Toro repair is the warranty of the work.
Sorry, we were posting at the same time.
I was saying that dealing with the intricate and delicate gadjets inside the carburetor vs unbolting one and bolting on another is something that are very different skill sets.
You have a nice blower. Let the dealer fix it.
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post #8 of 86 Old 03-19-2014, 09:30 AM
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Also if you opt for option #2 Beardown, make sure your augers are as clean as possible!
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post #9 of 86 Old 03-19-2014, 09:58 AM Thread Starter
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Also if you opt for option #2 Beardown, make sure your augers are as clean as possible!
Sorry, which one is option #2? I don't know what you mean.
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post #10 of 86 Old 03-19-2014, 04:04 PM
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do u have a neighbor or buddy that can do the carb work. and in exchange you can do something they can not. in those toro's there are no BLOODY SHEER PINS in them. I would need pics or vid's to help you on that problem. I have my jet mechanic next door neighbor do my carb work. all I can do is screw them up. in exchange I take care of his drive and mow his yard every now and then. but like I said you get me pic's and vids. I can take care of that other problem for you. at least that way you can keep the family jewels halfway safe. let me know

Long LIVE THE POWERSHIFT!! MAY IT NEVER RUST IN PEACE!!
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MAHALO!!!!!!!!!
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