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I purchased a self propelled Sears Craftsman lawn mower one years ago. That means, this is the second season I have used it. I paid $300 for this mower.

It is a model # 917.377842, 6.5HP Honda engine, and "features" easy height adjustment with one lever each for the front and back wheels (2 levers).

The steel levers slip into slots on the aluminum deck (can you see this train wreck coming?). Thus, after 1 1/2 seasons of adjusting the wheels for various conditions (wet - mow low, dry - mow high), the freaking levers no longer say in the aluminum slots because (are you listening, sears engineers?), steel tends to wear away aluminum, and now the slots are not able to contain the levers and the mower is constantly falling to it's lowest position, scalps the lawn, and what a mess that makes.

Guess what? One year warranty! The "helpful" sears service associate suggested I buy an extended warranty for this mower. The price? $ 300!

So, just into the second season, the options are to either buy a complete new deck (which will probably last another season or so), or buy a new mower.

I won't be buying anything from sears (it doesn't deserve capitalization) and now I realize that the name "craftsman" is Chinese for "cheap."

Too soon old, too late smart.

Ed Marshall

Akron, OH

Monetary Loss: $300.

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Anonymous
#866753

I've had this same lawnmower for ten years... runs great and have never had the problems you are describing, but have had them slip when I have hit an object.

The motor, built by Honda is the the best thing on it. Starts on the first pull every spring.

Anonymous
#462365

Same Sears Craftsman mower, 917.377842, same exact problem. Poor engineering/design.

The adjustment lever has a stamped detent with rounded shoulders. It pops out seconds after being adjusted.

Anonymous
#178954

I also have the same design of Sears lawnmower and the exact same thing happened to me as Emarshbuck has explained. I've owned mine for about 3 years and it started the front lever started wearing down this summer.

The reply Gordon had implying misuse is off-base- I never stored anything on my lawnmower and Emarshbuck's problems happened exactly the same way for me.

I think the vibration was causing the lever to rub against the deck, causing the slot to wear.

Anonymous
Hersham, England, United Kingdom #27548

Your mower was not manufactured by MTD, it was manufactured by American Yard Products (also known as Husqvarna Outdoor Products). These are the same people who make Weedeater and Poulan Pro mowers.

If you see a craftsman model starting with 917, it was made by AYP. MTD has not been in the craftsman game for several years.

Anonymous
Kent, England, United Kingdom #24611

As far as the aluminum and steel issue maybe the issue is a vibration one while the mower is operating.Which means the grooves were designed write or an additional locking mechanism is needed.

Sears used to have a 2 warranty on the mowers-using one bought in 2006.

I would still do some research and see if there were any recalls.Maybe MTD might do something as a courtesy.It seems to me that if the product was never designed or built right or the customer never received a defect free product from the get go you would think there would be some type of recourse.

One last thing.Sears trains their associates to ask the customer for the highest price agreement first and then offer lower priced ones if they do not accept.You were probably offered the maximum delux service plan.

Anonymous
Slayton, Minnesota, United States #24310

rebeccaamerocco, don't act like a dunce. The warranty he was offered was probably a 3-4 year warranty and would probably not go into effect until after the current repairs were completed, anyway.

To your point that "if sears contracts with the companies to build mowers using THEIR SEARS CRAFTSMAN NAME, then they are responsible.", you are correct. And, from one year from the date of purchase, they were responsible.

After reading the original complaint again, I can't help but think that there's more to the story than Emarshbuck let on. First of all, so what if one part is steel and the other is aluminum? Unless you're constantly moving those parts across each other, you won't have a wear problem. I'm thinking you probably used the mower as a storage shelf or put some large amount of weight on it to cause it to "wear" out.

With my mower, I notice wear, but my mower is also 5 years old, and still a long way from being rendered inoperable by the problem.

Anonymous
Edinburg, Virginia, United States #24230

Wow! "me" do you often pay the same amount for an extended warrenty as you paid for the item?

And then do you always believe there would be "no problem?" the warrenty probably doesn't even include the parts that break down the most (as in many warranties i've seen in the past) No wonder they sell such expensive warrenties if people like you buy their *** - You think it is financially responsible to pay the same price for a warranty as you paid for the mower? Rather than pay $300 for a mower and $300 for an extended warrenty (***) why not just put that $300 in a savings account and then you could just buy a whole new mower, instead of fixing the crappy one.

ALSO, if sears contracts with the companies to build mowers using THEIR SEARS CRAFTSMAN NAME, then they are responsible. If I put my name on a product, I would surely want it to be a good one.

It's their responsibility to make sure the products they put their name on work well. The manufacturer might be building to the specs, you don't know!

Anonymous
Reston, Virginia, United States #24181

That's why Sears offers the extended warranty....you would have no problem. Sears and Craftsman is not the manufacturer of the mowers, a comapny called MTD is, so find their info and complain to them.

Anonymous
Slayton, Minnesota, United States #24028

Honda is a Japanese company. I have a Honda brand mower that has the same feature you were talking about with the lever, and it's having the same problem.

I'm pretty sure it's not a Sears problem, it's the manufacturer. Thus, trying to hold Sears responsible after the warranty expired is like holding Mother nature responsible for getting a fly in your soup.

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