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K. Wiggins
K. Wiggins, ASE Certified Technician
Category: Small Engine
Satisfied Customers: 2518
Experience:  AA in automotive Technology, 15+ years in the trade
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I have a crafstman snowblower (2-stage). It is only 5 years

Customer Question

I have a crafstman snowblower (2-stage). It is only 5 years old. But the past two winters (including this one). I can get it to start. But when I slowly move the choke to "run" it starts "heaving"/sputting over and over. It stays running, but it just sounds bad... Is there something wrong? Like gunk in my carborator?
JA: Do you have fuel in the tank? If so, is the shut-off valve open and the fuel clean?
Customer: I have fuel in the tank. I will have to check the manual to find the shut-off valve... How do I know if the fuel is "clean"? I put stabil in every spring? DO I need to get seafoam or something?
JA: Do you plan on doing the work yourself?
Customer: I can. I don't have means to get the snowblower to a shop.
JA: Anything else we should know to help you best?
Customer: I don't think so.
Submitted: 18 days ago.
Category: Small Engine
Expert:  K. Wiggins replied 18 days ago.

Hello, it sounds like you have a combination of stale fuel and some clogging in the carburetor jets. Even tho sta-bil does control fuel degradation it's not optimal after being stored for 3 seasons.

What I suggest is siphoning out the current fuel and adding fresh one as well as putting 1-2 oz of this in the tank. It should begin to clear up within using that tank of fuel.

Let me know if I can help further.

Customer: replied 18 days ago.
Thanks for your response. Some clarity:When you say "not optimal for THREE SEASONS" are you assuming I have not used it for 3 winters/years? Or do you mean: spring, summer, and fall? I want to make it clear that I use the snow blower EVERY winter, but have only noticed this issue the past few winters. If you mean it's not optimal for spring, summer, and fall - what can I do to prevent this? Does it mean running it a few times in the off season? Or will I have to drain the gas every year?Also, will the product you suggest clean out the carburetor through use? Or will I have to disassemble the carburetor and clean it out myself too?
Expert:  K. Wiggins replied 18 days ago.

I was speaking of spring, summer and fall storage. couple options are to either use the sta-bil with ethanol free gas during these times, Use sta-bil and e1 gas and fill the tank so theres no room for condensation to form or the e10 to absorb moisture or start it every month or so.

The berryman I linked to is very strong and will clean carbs like yours, that aren't fully clogged, during regular use.

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