Craftsman Snowthrower - Electric Start Problems


Old 12-29-11, 01:12 PM
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Craftsman Snowthrower - Electric Start Problems

In 2009 I purchased a Craftsman 22" Two-Stage Gasoline Powered Snow Thrower with Electric Start. From the beginning, the Electric Starter has not worked. This year, after several unsuccessful trips to the Sears repair facility, I decided to attempt the repair myself.

The snowthrower consistently starts using the pull starter, but the electric starter spins, but never engages the flywheel. I've removed the starter, and tested it - it appears to be working. However, each time I reattach the starter to the snowthrower, the snowthrower will start using the electric starter 1 time, and then on subsequent attempts to start it using the electric start, the starter just spins, never engaging the flywheel. There's some very minor wearing on the teeth on the gear in the starter, and almost no wearing on the teeth on the fly wheel. It seems to me, that somehow after the first start, the gear in the starter is becoming mis-aligned with the flywheel - but I have no clue where to go from here. Does anyone have any suggestions on this? Should I just give up and be happy with the fact that the recoil starter works?

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Old 12-30-11, 05:58 AM
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Could it be a lubrication issue? Have you asked Sears for a new starter and other related parts that
you could install yourself?
Old 12-31-11, 06:39 AM
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What make engine is on your machine? What are the ID numbers of both the machine (chassis) and engine? "Some wear" on either the starter Bendix gear or the flywheel ring gear will be enough to cause trouble. Wear on both and you have a situation just like you're encountering. Post back with helpful ID numbers!
Old 12-31-11, 10:00 AM
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Sorry for not including this at the beginning.

Snow Thrower Model Number: 247.88755
Engine Model Number: ZS365-SU
Electric Starter: Part Number: 751-10645

I think that it's important to note that the electric starter has not worked from day 1. I purchased this new in box in January 2009. When I discovered that the electric starter did not work, I went back to the store to exchange it, but being January in Cleveland, they were sold out - so my only option was to send it away for a month to have it repaired or flat out return the snow thrower. Since it started with the pull start, I kept it and decided to get it fixed over the summer. In the summer of 2009, I took it to the Sears Repair shop, and they "fixed" it. Stupidly, I didn't check it right there on the spot, and only found out when I went to use it for the first time in December 2009 that the electric start still didn't work. Again, since it was winter, I decided to deal with the absence of the electric starter, and use it over the winter... during which time the manufacturer warranty expired (January 2010).

Besides replacing the starter, what else could be replaced in an attempt to repair this? In the owners manual, the gear that the starter should turn (is this the flywheel?) isn't listed as a separate (purchasable) part - and would it really be worth it - or would this be getting to the level of actually rebuilding the engine? The snow thrower was $500. A replacement starter is $160. I've already had to replace the transmission assembly $140 (due to another issue).

Please excuse my mistakes in terminology... I'm a novice when it comes to this stuff, but trying to learn.

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