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1 older simplicity 1 craftsman and a early model Ariens all 3 threw rods and engines are junk.
Temps here this morning were around -10F and we really didnt get much for snow less than 2".
But the owners of the above machines felt compelled to operate their equipment.
Two common things with all three were:
1) being stored outside w/o protection, the craftsman owner said he had a garbage bag on his most of summer.
2) Throttled up to full throttle less than a minute after being started
Two of them did not even get to be moved before self destruction occurred. The ariens was moved 35ft.
The craftsman owner said he had sae 30 oil in it as that is what his lawnmower uses....?? and stated it pulled so hard that he plugged in the electric starter that he never ever uses. when I told him he should have had 5W-30 in it he said no his lawn mower engine manual says SAE 30. I explained the need for the SAE 30 because of summer temps and the need for lighter viscosity for winter temps. He said he would have to prove me wrong by getting info from the MFG. I said please do...

I understand that sometimes we have stuff that we just cant get under a roof for protection, but you can at least cover your investment up with a tarp etc. ALL OF THEM told me that tarps are expensive. I showed each one some outdoor grille covers that I purchased again end of season this fall on clearance for less than 10.00 a piece normally $35.00 to $ 40.00 ea. total of 12 from 3 different big box stores and fit over a snowblower just fine. I sell these to people who need a cover for $15.00.
None of them are happy with me as they all wanted me to find them used engines for under $100.00 and would go as high as $200.00 -$225.00 all completed with install including engine. I declined to do any of them.

3 inside of 3.5 hr all the same it was a complete deja-vu .
 

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you can't fix stupid. while yes it is nice if you can cover your machine or protect it from the whether it is really needed. my snowblower sat in the middle of my backyard all summer and it is just fine. already used it a couple times this season. i think the bigger issue is usually maintenance like proper oil and keeping the oil level where needed. you have the chance of moisture causing stuff like sticking throttles or stuff like that whether you keep it covered or not.

yup smart decision to not to the work for them. i would not touch something for someone who just wants to cheap out or want you to do it as cheap as possible. i would only do something like that for family or good friends but usually i try to give them the advise needed to keep a machine running forever before they have any issues. anyone that wants you to do stuff as cheap as possible is going to be a headache down the road
 

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I can see how running straight 30 oil, in -10F, could be a problem. But I'm surprised the other ones blew, if they had proper oil. It's a snowblower, it should be able to survive cold temps, even if it's not given a few minutes to warm up (which *does* seem like a good idea, but not everyone will be patient enough).

crazzywolfie, I'm speculating that my current machine was stored outdoors, uncovered, for a while. The machine is quite rusty, and a bunch of fasteners twisted off while trying to work on it (including ones threaded into the engine). I sure wish the previous owner had kept it covered! Or least somehow kept it less-rusty. My tractor lives under a tarp year-round, and it's never given me trouble with linkages rusting up or anything. On the contrary, I'd say it's in much better shape than my blower, rust-wise, despite being about 4 years older. And the blower has lived in my garage for the last 6 years, since I bought it. The tractor has been under a tarp since I bought it 9 years ago, though admittedly I think the previous owners had it garaged.

Not trying to tell anyone what to do, but what I've seen, keeping equipment covered seems like a better approach, to me. It's at least my preference.

Lottstodo, sorry you had to deal with those, it does seem like declining is probably the safer approach, to avoid dealing with hassles of potentially unhappy customers. Too bad the machines suffered that fate!
 

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1 older simplicity 1 craftsman and a early model Ariens all 3 threw rods and engines are junk.
Temps here this morning were around -10F and we really didnt get much for snow less than 2".
But the owners of the above machines felt compelled to operate their equipment.
Two common things with all three were:
1) being stored outside w/o protection, the craftsman owner said he had a garbage bag on his most of summer.
2) Throttled up to full throttle less than a minute after being started
Two of them did not even get to be moved before self destruction occurred. The ariens was moved 35ft.
The craftsman owner said he had sae 30 oil in it as that is what his lawnmower uses....?? and stated it pulled so hard that he plugged in the electric starter that he never ever uses. when I told him he should have had 5W-30 in it he said no his lawn mower engine manual says SAE 30. I explained the need for the SAE 30 because of summer temps and the need for lighter viscosity for winter temps. He said he would have to prove me wrong by getting info from the MFG. I said please do...

I understand that sometimes we have stuff that we just cant get under a roof for protection, but you can at least cover your investment up with a tarp etc. ALL OF THEM told me that tarps are expensive. I showed each one some outdoor grille covers that I purchased again end of season this fall on clearance for less than 10.00 a piece normally $35.00 to $ 40.00 ea. total of 12 from 3 different big box stores and fit over a snowblower just fine. I sell these to people who need a cover for $15.00.
None of them are happy with me as they all wanted me to find them used engines for under $100.00 and would go as high as $200.00 -$225.00 all completed with install including engine. I declined to do any of them.

3 inside of 3.5 hr all the same it was a complete deja-vu .
is that a crack smokin hood?

so what do you suggest if the blower is outside and they use 5w-30? is there anything else an owner can do? should they turn over engine with key off to maybe lube things first ? sometimes it falls below zero and here and my machines are in garage. I don't wanna blow one.

thanks.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
let them Idle and warm up for awhile so that the oil has a chance to warm.

RedOctobyr:: The other 2 machines I do not know what type or weight or amount of oil was in those blowers, the bad part neither did the owners , they never checked. They could not tell me when the last time oil had been changed or checked. when I asked them if they changed oil last year one said he didnt think so but thought he had 4 yrs. ago . The other asked why nothins been leaking he did not ever remember changing oil on that simplicity, ever!!!
 

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The new Ariens Deluxe 24's that my church has been getting the past 2 years only have 1 engine speed.. fast.. there is now slow or fast on it :(
 

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Agreed it was a good decision to not deal with idiot cheapskates. Just today I got the eyeroll from my wife for suggesting maybe keep the two snowblowers in the basement instead of the shed at end of season (note that I drain ALL fuel then) because the basement is much drier and we have plenty of room. And regardless of hours I change the engine oil, and grease and oil those bits that need grease and oil and so on. My lawn mower is 25 years old, runs fine, just follow the maintenance instruction in the manual. I haven't the foggiest idea why that is so hard for so many people.

As cranman noted those people are job security for repair shops and OPE manufacturers.
 

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Yeah. Why would or did they do that to the 24. DO NOT LIKE IT !!! I have a couple here close by both of the owners dislike that feature. I have been approached by one owner as to a possible carb swap to something with speed control as soon as his factory warranty is up.
 

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Sometimes these discussions can still help others, fortunately. I gave my machine some extra time to warm up tonight, before putting it to work. So thanks for the reminder, at least!
 

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crazzywolfie, I'm speculating that my current machine was stored outdoors, uncovered, for a while. The machine is quite rusty, and a bunch of fasteners twisted off while trying to work on it (including ones threaded into the engine). I sure wish the previous owner had kept it covered! Or least somehow kept it less-rusty. My tractor lives under a tarp year-round, and it's never given me trouble with linkages rusting up or anything. On the contrary, I'd say it's in much better shape than my blower, rust-wise, despite being about 4 years older. And the blower has lived in my garage for the last 6 years, since I bought it. The tractor has been under a tarp since I bought it 9 years ago, though admittedly I think the previous owners had it garaged.
but it may also be the location you keep it. a lot of people will toss stuff like snowblowers or lawn mowers under trees or in shaded area's that get very little sun. whether you tarp something or not in a shady area with very little if any sun stuff usually start rusting or falling apart. if you have that tarped machine somewhere sunny where the moisture has the chance to evaporate once in a while it will probably be fine. if you leave it out in the sun the paint/plastic usually fades or discolors. storage locating is a a big determining factor bad something may rust.
 

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That's an interesting point, and a good thing to keep in mind, thanks. The tractor is under the deck, but it gets sun on the tarp. Maybe that's helped, I hope so.
 

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oh for crying out loud. I've stored power equipment outside allbeit under a tarp for years and no issues. Stop with this storing your stuff in the basement crap. the garage or outside is fine.
 

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The old Mastercraft (MTD) spent most of its life outside, under a snow blower cover. I can't say that it was, over time, any worse for wear for being left outside. Over the yrs, there have been a number of occasion where it was necessary to venture out and wake the beast when the mercury was close to or at -30C. Never relished those occasions, especially without hand warmers, but there were some details I always attended to when it was that cold. The beast always had synthetic 5W-30 in its belly. Even so, slowly pulling the crank over by hand at those temperatures made one cringe at the thought of the beast firing up in that state. For moi, the solution was rather simple. By plugging the beast in and running the e-starter through one or two five second cycles (ignition off), the engine loosened up quite measurably. Thereafter a quick tug of the recoil would most always get things fired up. Correction: The old girl did in fact have a pretty effective hand warmer - just not the kind that kept the pinkies warm when you're hanging on. Only downside to that style hand warmer was getting the smell of the exhaust gases off yer hands. :biggrin:
 

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1) being stored outside w/o protection, the craftsman owner said he had a garbage bag on his most of summer.
oh for crying out loud. I've stored power equipment outside allbeit under a tarp for years and no issues. Stop with this storing your stuff in the basement crap. the garage or outside is fine.
"w/o protection" is the operative statement in the OP's post.

I visualize something like this C/L ad.

 

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Agreed it was a good decision to not deal with idiot cheapskates. Just today I got the eyeroll from my wife for suggesting maybe keep the two snowblowers in the basement instead of the shed at end of season (note that I drain ALL fuel then) because the basement is much drier and we have plenty of room. And regardless of hours I change the engine oil, and grease and oil those bits that need grease and oil and so on. My lawn mower is 25 years old, runs fine, just follow the maintenance instruction in the manual. I haven't the foggiest idea why that is so hard for so many people.

As cranman noted those people are job security for repair shops and OPE manufacturers.

Well, I thought I was the pinnacle of yard care equipment.....But you have me beat. Never thought of storing these beasts in a basement before. I got laughed at by my work colleagues when I told them that using car wax on lawnmowers and snowblowers was part of my maintenance routine. Why not? Who says that any power equipment has to look like S%$T? I believe in taking care and my stuff looks like new. Qudo's to you , my friend.:wink2:
 

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If you leave anything lying around outside here in my HOOD. The local RIFF-RAFF will jack it in a NEW YORK MINUTE. :eek:mg::emoticon-south-park
 

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I like to run any engine at minimum rpm to get job done.
Thats a very bad idea, especially with summer equipment.
Small gas engines are air-cooled. it seems counter-intuitive, but they are designed to run *cooler* the faster they run. they are designed to run at full RPM, for the best cooling, because the fan forces more air across the cooling fins the faster it runs.

Running them at low RPM's for extended time can result in dangerous overheating. Probably not a major issue with a snowblower, but it definitely would be for summer mowers or garden tractors.

They should only be "throttled down" when starting, and for a minute or less when being stopped. For normal use while mowing or blowing snow, it should be full RPM all the time.


Scot
 
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