Model #917273623 CRAFTSMAN Lawn, Tractor

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Question and Answers

Q:

My Craftsman 917.273623 Lawn Tractor was backfiring, checked valve pushrods and all bent or broken.

A:

I know how important it is to have a good working Tractor in your home so that you can keep your grass maintained. While you are waiting for an expert answer, I did manage to find a few links that will provide you with some good information about what may be causing your problem.

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Priscilla V -
July 13, 2011
A:

Thank you for your question.

I am sorry you are having a problem with the tractor. If the push rods are bent, I suspect the valves are hanging open. When this happens, the valve does not close fast enough to keep the pushrod in place. This allows the rod to drop out. Then the next time the cam comes around it binds and bends the rod. I recommend having the heads rebuilt or replaced. Once you are ready to reinstall the rods please click here to watch a video on how to adjust the valves.

Please feel free to reply below with more details if you need further assistance on the tractor.

Here is a link to order any parts you need. Sears Parts Direct .

If you do not feel confident repairing this problem yourself, then you can have it repaired at your home by a Sears technician. Here is a link for the website: Sears Home Services .

Thank you for using Manage my life.

Mark T.

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Mark T -
Sears Technician
July 15, 2011
A:

The Exhaust valves are hitting inside the engine so they do not open all of the way so when the flywheel is turned the pushrods bend on this 24 HP Twin Briggs & Stratton.

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John -
July 15, 2011
A:

Thank you for the reply. If the piston is hitting the valves, there is a timing problem. First, remove the head and make sure the valve is closing all the way. I have seen the valve seat come out and hang the valve open. Then you are adjusting for the correct valve leash on a stuck valve. This will result in the valve opening further than it should. If the valve is fine, the problem could be the camshaft. If the camshaft has a plastic, gear it could have slipped a few teeth. To access the cam you have to remove the engine from the tractor. Then tip the engine over and remove the sump. Once it is off you will see two gears. Each gear has a dot on the face. If you turn the crankshaft so the dot is facing the cam, the dot on the cam should be aligned with the dot on the crank. If they do not line up turn the crank one more revolution. They should be aligned now. If they are not the timing is off. inspect the gears and replace if needed. Please let me know if you need further assistance.

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Mark T -
Sears Technician
July 16, 2011
A:

For future reference by anyone who happens to reach this... What I've been encountering on my Briggs V-Twin was a similar issue -- pushrods bent, even turning the engine by hand will bend them. Look at the valve stem. The oil seal around the stem that is pressure-fit into the cylinder head likes to slide out. When it does, the valve rocker can't rock as far as it needs to and the pushrod bends. The oil seal is identified in your manual as Key 868, Sears P/N 690698. (To help you locate it on a diagram for reference) Head to an auto parts store and rent a valve spring compression tool. You want the smaller one that doesn't require the head be removed. In my town, O'Reilly carried it. Remove the valve rocker. Compress the spring and use a magnet to remove the two tiny metal 'keepers' on the valve stem. You should be able to take the valve spring off now. Take a flat screwdriver and carefully tap the valve seal back into the block until it's flush. Reinstall and put new pushrods in. Run it until those things slide out again (Or give up and tack-weld/Loctite it in place. Even new heads won't correct this issue). Hope this helps anyone else in the future. These engines practically treat pushrods as a wear item.

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Paul -
November 28, 2014
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Q:

Sears DYT 4000 tractor backfiring out carbrurator

A:

Carburetor problems can mean some time disassembling and cleaning. The expert will review and respond for you model but if you would like to check a more generalized answer you can click on the link below. It may help get you started.

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Barbara H. -
June 30, 2011
A:

The link Barbara H sent gives you instructions for adjusting the valves on some Briggs engines. These instructions will work for your engine.

If you want to diagnose the problem with the engine, you should remove both spark plugs and valve covers. Look at the rocker arms in case one is loose or has fallen off.

If the rocker arms seem ok, rotate the flywheel of the engine slowly by hand and watch the rocker arms on both cylinders to see if they are moving up and down. The rocker arms should have about the same amount of travel. If one rocker is barely moving, there is a problem with a bent push rod or valve. There could also be a worn lobe on the cam gear that is not moving the push rod.

Before removing the spark plugs you can try this simple test to find out which cylinder the problem is located in. Start the engine and use insulated pliers or wear thick gloves and remove the plug wire from each cylinder. If the engine dies when you remove one wire, you know the problem is in the other cylinder.

If you have more questions, reply on this thread and I will be glad to help.

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Jimmy K -
Sears Technician
July 01, 2011
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