Craftsman Snow Thrower Model# 536884351 Belt Drive Slipping

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  #1  
Old 01-21-09, 09:34 PM
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Craftsman Snow Thrower Model# 536884351 Belt Drive Slipping

I've had this snow thrower for about eight years and it has been pretty reliable. Lately when it gets really cold (below 20 degrees F) it seems the belt isn't driving the auger with the oomph it usually exhibits. At start up even light powder will bog down the auger. After about 20 minutes it seems to work reliably again until I put it into the high thick stuff at the end of the driveway from the street plows; then it starts to lag again. The auger pulley and the engine pulley are aligned and everything else about the drive seems ok. The belt also doesn't appear to be cracking or anything. Would a new belt solve this issue?
 
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  #2  
Old 01-22-09, 04:23 AM
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: MA
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A belt would be the 1st place to start
 
  #3  
Old 01-22-09, 06:05 AM
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After 8 years of use, I would say that the belt has a bit of wear. Time for a new one.
 
  #4  
Old 01-22-09, 08:50 AM
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It hasn't gotten that much use frankly. However I realize 8 year old rubber isn't ideal. The ribbed sections of the belt seem pretty sharp. I'm no expert but I've seen worn out belts before and this one looks a heck of a lot better than those.

I'm merely looking to see if anyone else has had experience with this issue before I go out and plunk $26 for a belt and shipping. I'd like to avoid buying the part until I can reasonably confirm it is the cause of the problem. Or perhaps equivalet belts are available locally rather than purchasing from Sears?

Thanks
 
  #5  
Old 01-22-09, 11:18 AM
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: MA
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Well, I do not think any of us can 100% diagnose a problem with having the machine and going through a troubleshooting procedure. I would ask you if the machine has been tuned up in the 8 years? If not when it hits the snow and bogs down does the engine seem as strong as usual or does it sound like it is cutting out? A dirty carb/fuel delivery issue can cause a machine to bog under load and is common. You should be able to get the belt at your local outdoor power equipment dealer and save shipping costs. With regard to trying absolutely be sure it is the belt before buying I would ask you this question: It is 8 years old and is going to break soon, should it happen on a Saturday and you could not get a belt until Monday and you were in the middle of a Blizzard how inconvenienced would you be? If it is more than $20 worth I would buy the belt. It will eliminate 1 potential cause and assist in trouble shooting if you need to go further. You will also have your old belt to hang on the wall as a back-up if my earlier scenario ever plays out.
 

Last edited by smallengineguy; 01-22-09 at 12:55 PM. Reason: spelling
  #6  
Old 01-22-09, 11:57 AM
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Wink

I agree with 'Smallengineguy' AND while you're at it - spend the extra $2.52 and replace the idler spring - (it could be part of the problem now). AND - RE: the engine - if you haven't, clean the carb and the fuel tank.
IF YOU DON"T use 'STABIL' in your gas - I recommend it. Most of my stuff sits outside all the time, and I don't drain the tanks. I can start most of my equip. after months of sitting with only 2 -3 pulls. (And some of my equip is 20+ years old).
 
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