Craftsman is a brand of hand tools, power tools, and power equipment sold by Sears. Craftsman snowblowers, like all gasoline-powered equipment, require lubricating oil for operation. Craftsman recommends changing the oil in its snowblowers after the first five hours of operation and every 50 hours thereafter. Change the oil after each snowblowing season if you don't operate it for 50 hours a year.
How to Change the Oil in Your Craftsman Snowblower
Step 1: Prepare the Engine
Run the snowblower engine until it is out of gasoline and comes to a full stop. If you are changing oil after five hours of operation or during the snowblowing season and you plan to run the machine again rather than store it, run the engine for a few minutes in order to warm the oil. Stop the engine and pull the rubber boot from the spark plug by grasping the boot and pulling it gently. This helps guard against accidental start up.
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This same procedure also prepares the snowblower for off-season storage.
Step 2: Locate the Oil Drain Plug
Locate the oil drain plug. It is typically on one side of the large, round recoil starter housing. The plug is capped with a hex head nut.
Step 3: Position a Drip Pan
Place an approved used-oil container under the drain plug. Approved containers are designed to accept used oil and are labeled as such.
Step 4: Loosen the Drain Plug
Hold an open-end wrench on the tube that terminates with the drain plug. This secures the tube in place. Turn the oil drain plug with a second open-end wrench. Some engines have small drain plug at the end of a rigid metal tube; these require only one wrench for removal.
Step 5: Drain the Oil
Remove the drain plug and allow the used oil to flow into the container. Remove the dipstick from the oil fill tube. This allows some airflow through the system to prevent suction and improve the flow of oil.
Step 6: Reinstall the Drain Plug
Replace the plug once all the oil has drained from the snowblower. Tighten the drain plug with the two wrenches, as before.
Step 7: Add Engine Oil
Fill the snowblower engine with clean, fresh oil. Check your owner's manual to determine the correct amount of oil needed for your Craftsman snowblower. Some require 20 ounces of lubricating oil, but larger-capacity engines may need up to 40 ounces. Use an oil brand that is blended with a detergent. Craftsman cautions that non-detergent oil or 2-stroke engine oil can shorten engine life.
Fill the oil in small increments, checking the dipstick as you go. This prevents overfilling the oil reservoir, which can lead to excessive smoking (upon engine startup) and other problems.
Step 8: Prepare for Startup
Reconnect the spark plug boot, and add gas to the engine, if you're planning to use the snowblower soon. If you're storing the machine for the season, do not refill the gas tank; it's best to store it without gas.
Step 9: Dispose of the Old Oil
Dispose of used oil at an approved recycling center. Many auto shops will be happy to take your used oil; some have public-use recycling vats that will be clearly marked. Do not pour the oil onto the ground or dispose of it in regular trash, both of which can contaminate drinking water and pollute the ground.