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Craftsman 28" Snow Thrower 247.88690 Stalls when warm - Briggs and Stratton

craigdg's Avatar

Join Date: Feb 2013
Posts: 2

02-09-13, 08:00 PM   #1  
Craftsman 28" Snow Thrower 247.88690 Stalls when warm - Briggs and Stratton


I have owned the above snow thrower for 3+ years.
When it is running, it works really well, and I am happy with it.
However, lately I have been having issues with it where I will be able to run it for 10-15 minutes, but once it gets warmed up, it will stall all of a sudden for no reason. I will have to let it cool down a bit in order to get it started again.

Interestingly, it will NEVER stall while in the middle of biting into a run of snow. When it does end up stalling, it will be at a point where I have finished a run of snow, and maybe I am rolling the blower to the next section of snow. The engine noise will fluctuate a bit, and then I will know it is getting close to stall. Typically then the next time I activate the auger, it will stall out.

I have googled a bit on craftsman snow thrower warm stalls, but I could not find much on this particular model. Solutions I have read for other models ranged from drilling a hole in the case cap to keep it vented, to replacing the coil, to adding a heat shield somewhere in the engine.

Unfortunately I am not very handy, and probably won't be able to do the repair myself, but what I would kindly request your help with is the diagnostic/troubleshooting part of this solution. If I can get a high degree of confidence on what might solve the problem, I don't mind (too much) paying to have someone do the work. What I want to avoid, however, is putting money into this snow thrower and still not resolving the issue.

I thank you in advance for your expert assistance!


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marbobj's Avatar

Join Date: May 2006
Posts: 3,659

02-10-13, 01:32 PM   #2  
Some of things you've come with are the most common. The gas tank venting is best checked by loosening the cap and see if that helps. That usually occurs sooner than 15 minutes of run time, though. Still it could be a partially plugged vent.

The coil/module is a possibility. With yourself out of the equation for checking the spark makes it difficult to say. A bright blue spark at time of shutdown with the kill wire detached spells a bad coil.

It could be a heat up issue with a partially plugged exhaust, or a wrong spark plug, or poor quality gas that allows preignition. You could put a little octane booster in some new gas and try that.

Or you could have a partially plugged main jet = lean mixture = over heating. Try some Sea Foam to clean out the system. You can get that at a Walmart or auto parts store. Just follow the directions on the can.

Northern Mike's Avatar

Join Date: Jan 2012
Posts: 2,541

02-11-13, 05:12 AM   #3  
It sounds like it could be an air leak causing it to run lean once it warms up.
The next time it is starting to stall, give it a bit of chock and see if you can keep it running.

If this works, it's probably the carb gasket.

How do you store the blower during the summer time? Do you dry store it (all fuel removed)?

craigdg's Avatar

Join Date: Feb 2013
Posts: 2

03-10-13, 03:11 PM   #4  
Hi.. I finally brought this snowthrower to a small engine repair guy.

He tested it out and said it looks like the carburator holes are clogging (he said the holes are extremely tiny.. like 15 thousandths or something).
He is going to clean it out for me and retest it.
Lastly, he recommends that I use marine fuel stabilizer in the fuel to prevent decomposition of the fuel which is causing this problem. (He said water and/or enthanol in the fuel is the culprit here...)

I wanted to get your opinions here on whether this was likely the cause, and what your recommendations were. Does his assessment make sense based on the issues I was having (see below).

Do you think the fuel stabilizer will solve this problem going forward?

Is there a replacement carburetor for these Briggs engines that is better designed and wont gunk up as easily?

Thanks in advance for your input.


PJmax's Avatar
Group Moderator

Join Date: Oct 2012
Posts: 42,532

03-10-13, 03:21 PM   #5  
All carburetors have small jets and orifices.
Fuel stabilizer does help in the off season.

BUT.... when the season is over. You must shut the gas off and run the engine until it stalls. The crap that is currently clogging your carb is from when the gas was sitting in there all summer.

aandpdan's Avatar

Join Date: Sep 2009
Posts: 481

03-11-13, 11:44 AM   #6  
Is there a replacement carburetor for these Briggs engines that is better designed and wont gunk up as easily?
It's not really the carbs fault. Gas goes bad nowadays in as short as 30 days. The ethanol loves to suck the moisture out of the air and then corrosion starts in your fuel system. It doesn't take much to gum/corrode things. Gums and varnish also clog the small ports.

Buy only enough gas to use in about a month, throw it into the car if you don't use it.

Lots of people are having problems like this. Fuel stabilizer can help prevent the breakdown.

CliffordP's Avatar

Join Date: Feb 2014
Posts: 1

02-09-14, 08:17 AM   #7  
Replacing the coil solved my problem

My Sears Snow thrower did the same thing, it would run for 15 minutes, stall and would not start until it cooled down. I tried the loose gas cap, cleaning the carb, replacing the carb, etc. I then ordered and replaced the coil with a replacement part number coil and it has worked perfectly thru the past 5 storms running for 1-4 hours. There is a video on utube showing the procedure to replace the coil. Good luck!

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