I am new to the group, and hoping that somebody can help me out ASAP???
I have a 2 year old Sears Craftsman 3-in-1 ( side
discharge/mulching/bagging ) push lawnmower.
Last summer I noticed that the lawnmower started leaking gasoline
through the air filter, when I would turn the mower on its side, to
clean the underneath, after mowing my lawn.
Anyway, I took the lawnmower to Sears, because it was still under a 2
year factory warranty, and told them of the problem.
After a few weeks, they got back to me, and told me that the reason it
was leaking gas through the air filter was because I "must have run over
something, because the crankshaft was bent".
They told me that I would have to pay $160 dollars, because a crankshaft
is NOT part of the 2 year factory warranty!?
Anyway, I went to Google and Yahoo and did a search on bent crankshafts,
and I DIDN'T see not even ONE thing that stated that a "bent crankshaft"
will cause gas to leaking through the air filter???
I saw a bunch of stuff that said that when gas leaks through the air
filter, its usually a carberator problem with the float and needle being
So, what I would like to know, is Sears ripping me off $160 bucks??? I
did read that it is possible for oil to leak out of the lawnmower from a
"bent crankshaft", but will a "bent crankshaft" cause GAS to leak out
through the air filter???
Any info. will greatly be appreciated!!
The crankshaft has nothing to do with it. Lawnmowers are not designed to
be on their sides or upside down for that matter. Oil goes where is
shouldn't and gas goes where it shouldn't. If you want to tip it over,
drain the gas and oil out first.
It's not unusual for fuel to leak when tipping a mower. That's not an
indication of a problem. When tipping it, find the spark plug and always
tip it such the the spark plug is on the highest side. That should
lessen the chance of oil or gas leaking. Don't tip it any higher than
necessary or longer than necessary. Technically the fuel and oil should
be drained before tipping, but that's not very realistic.
Tell Sears that you don't want the crankshaft fixed, just put it back
together so it runs and then pick it up asap. I would not suggest
dealing with Sears repair dept. Find a local power equipment shop and
use them for your mower maintenance and repairs. Forget about getting
anything covered warranty. Since it made it through the first season
without problems it's very likely that any problems you encounter now
will not be a result of any defects.
If the crankshaft really is bent you would probably have noticed that it
vibrates a lot. Warranty never covers bent crankshafts. Using the mower
as intended, to cut grass, it's just not possible to bend one. It has to
strike something solid that it was not designed to cut.
First off, the gasoline through the air filter washed out the oil that's
supposed to be in it. That needs correction. See the mower's manual.
The tank side up on side, washing done quickly, can usually suffice in most
cases. If unable, purchase or make a ramp of low incline putting
chocks/stops in front of the front wheels. Back side of lawnmower will be
high. Remove spark plug wire while washing. Replace when dry.
Lawnmower crankshafts seldom bend. More likely, torque twisted by hitting
an immovable object with blade, or, run up the engine housing. Neither will
strictly make the gas go out the air filter as you seem to indicate. I
worked at a Sears lawnmower maintenance center many decades ago. It was an
assembly line of simple maintenance. The more difficult stuff was mostly
misdiagnosis and overkill to cover their butts. Apparently, that has not
See what I usually do, is when I am done mowing the lawn, I usually just
tilt the lawnmower up on its side, so that I can give the underneath a
quick scraping with a metal scraper to remove any debris, sense I have a
jerky neighbor whose a HUGE litterbug, and he likes to let his trash
blow all over the place. And while I try to avoid it and pick up all his
stuff that blows into my yard, sometimes I accidently run over rope,
string, empty bread bags, etc, etc, that he left in his yard, that blew
over to mine.
Anyway, if you were standing behind the mower at the handlebars, the gas
tank would be on the right side of the mower, and the oil tank would be
on the left side of the mower.
I would turn the mower up onto its left side, so that the oil tank would
be closest to the ground, and the gas tank would be higher up on the
top. The air filter would be facing straight up toward the sky.
This is when the mower would leak the gas through the air filter!!!!!
The mower would be up on its left side, the oil and gas tanks would be
facing the ground, and the air filter would be facing straight upwards,
but gas would leak out into the air filter and through it, getting all
over the mower and the ground!!!!
This is what I couldn't understand?? HOW can gas leak into, and through
the air filter, if the gas in the tank is toward the ground, and the air
filter right above it is toward the sky??? How can the gas LEAK
So when I dropped it off at Sears, they told me that the crankshaft was
bent, and this IS what was causing the gas to leak through the air
filter, and that if I spent the $160 to have them replace the bent
crankshaft, then the gas leak would stop.
I figured that they were telling the truth, and with gas prices at
almost $5 dollars a gallon, I don't want to waste a drop of gas, so I
already told them to go ahead and do it, and make the repair!!!!
So now it looks like I am going to be out $160 dollars, and end up
bringing the thing home, and have it still leak gas!?
I know that when I told my father that they wanted $160 dollars to fix
the mower, he said "for a $160 dollars, you should just buy a NEW
mower!!!". I guess I should have listened to him, RIGHT???
The funny thing is, the mower is only 2 years old, and none of this
happened during the 1st year when I bought it brand new in 2006?? I
would always do the same thing and turn it up on its left side, so that
I could clean off any debris underneath. Then last summer, it started
leaking the gas UPWARDS through the air filter when turned on its left
Well, to begin with: Sears uses Briggs and Stratton engines. As viewed from
the rear of the mower, the gas tank is and always was on the left for push
Yep, the $160.00 gotcha. Things never change. One can buy a new mower for
what they are charging to "fix" it. Listen to your "pops", if not me.
Either way, never leave the mower on its side for any appreciable amount of
You might do a cleanup of the yard of appreciable trash that clings to the
mowers underside crankshaft end and blade before mowing.
As for another reply, he/she has the right idea. Never mow while the grass
is wet. The only exception is to please the local homeowners association as
the grass is too long due to extended rainy periods. Sounds doubtful due to
your neighbor's trash accumulating on your yard. In addition, you should
allow the grass to grow at least 2" in height or more before mowing to
decrease the irrigation/watering needed. If you have alot of weeds, attack
immediately before flowering begins.
My Craftsman push mower does have the Briggs and Stratton engine, but if
you are standing behind it where the handlebars are, the gas tank is on
the right side of the engine, and the oil tank is on the left side of
But what I still don't get is, how is it that when I turn the gas tank
up on its left side, and the gas in the tank is facing down towards the
ground, then why does gas leak UP and out and through the air filter
which is facing upwards towards the sky?????
Before I bought this craftsman mower 2 years ago, I was using an old 22
inch Murray push mower that was like 20-30 years old. It also had a
Briggs and Stratton engine. I would always tilt that lawnmower up on its
left side as well, to scrape the underneath, when I was done mowing the
lawn. That mower NEVER leaked not even one drop of gas or oil, when it
was tipped up on its side, or even tipped completely over!!!!
Even though they both have Briggs and Stratton engines, is Murray a
better brand mower than Craftsman??? Or is it simply just because stuff
was made better back then??? 20 or 30 years ago, they made better
quality items, that were built to last?????
Not sure about the why on the gas leaking by now, but not then. I have a 1
year old Bohlen push mower with a Briggs and Stratton engine. I have leaned
it opposite the side of the gas tank for cleaning the bottom of the shroud
deck with a garden hose a few times. Its never been more than a couple of
minutes as I'm prepared with a pressurized water hose near the mower before
I tilt the mower. Buildup of clay mud underneath the deck is most likely
the problem in your case is my guess.
The much older mowers had the oil fill port at the base of the engine. They
were not as likely to leak as the fill cap was oil-tight. Older such mowers
had a manually operated choke lever, and speed control lever as well.
Yes, my older Murray push mower had the "speed control" handle, in which
you could control how fast the engine was running. It had the handle
with the bunny picture for slow, and the rabbit picture for fast. My 2
year old Craftsman push mower, does not have this feature, and so the
engine always runs at the same speed.
With my older Murray push mower, if you were standing at the back where
the handlebars were, the gas tank was also located on the right side of
the engine, but much lower down than where the Craftsman one is located,
and the oil filler tank was on the right side of the engine.
And I would turn the Murray mower up on its left side after every
mowing, to scrape or use the hose to clean out the underneath, and this
one never leaked gas or oil.
Isn't "progress" wonderful?
In another reply, if you missed it, I made the correction to the opposite
side for the location of the gas tank. Agreeing with what you're stating.
Am of opinion, if you missed it on another reply, you seem subject to clay
mud. Don't mow if its wet or damp.
On May 17, 11:51 am, email@example.com (MICHELLE H.) wrote:
Oh, that's easy. Yes, they are ripping you off. You are one of many
these days; apparently Sears and its employees are colluding to run
the company into bankruptcy for some reason.
If you'd bent your crankshaft enough to make a difference you'd know;
it's not impossible that it is bent but that has nothing to do with
the gas problem and if you can't notice it then it's not a problem.
But to bend the crankshaft you really need to hit a boulder or
something; mowers usually have a slippy plastic thing holding the
blade to the crank so that on such occasions it takes the brunt.
Anyway, the solution to the gas dripping problem is not to tip the
mower over. unlike chainsaws and the like, the mower has a floatbowl
carb instead of a diaphragm carb, and will spill gas when tilted.
might make oil come out the breather too. if you want to clean out the
bottom of the mower you need to either put it up on something like two
sawhorses, or get an electric.
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