Forums Archive Index > Outdoor Power Equipment > Replacing Auger Belt on Craftsman snowblower

Author: mellon1

Date: 15 Nov 2006 11:38 am

I'm new to the forum, so forgive me if I appear a little green...

I need to replace the auger belt on my late model (2003) Craftsman snowblower. I don't recall the model number but it's a 9 hp 27 inch cut.

I've heard that removing the auger housing is the best way to approach this, but I'm a little unsure of the steps involved.

Could someone give me a point-by-point instruction on how to perform this successfully? :?

Many Thanks

Author: OldToroOwner

Date: 15 Nov 2006 12:03 pm

If it's a 2003 your model # should still be intact somewhere on the frame or near the engine..
Try to get that number then go to Sears' website here:
and it will lead you to diagrams (along with manuals) that should illustrate how to remove the cover.
Good Luck..

oh yeah.. welcome to the forum. :welcome:

Author: mellon1

Date: 15 Nov 2006 12:33 pm

yeah, been there, did that.. etc... :cry:

I have the manual, however, there's a glaring omission in it regarding removing\ installing the new belt. Specifically, it makes no mention of how the belt actually comes out of the machine..... It just tells you to remove the belt from the pulley's and then remove the belt. However, clearly other parts need to be removed in order to get the belt out of the machine. It's my suspicion that this is a deliberate omission in the hope that consumers will find themselves in the position of having to make a service call. :(

Author: SnowPro

Date: 15 Nov 2006 2:32 pm

mellon1 wrote:
It's my suspicion that this is a deliberate omission in the hope that consumers will find themselves in the position of having to make a service call. :(

You are absolutely right. :roll:

You will have to split the machine in two. First remove the belt from the engine pulley, separate the front from the back, and then you can remove the belt from the auger pulley, replace it and put the two haves back together again.
This job is MUCH simpler with 2 people doing it. Very tough for one person to do it if you have never done it before. SURE to get the proper belt for your machine. It will really affect performance if you don't.


Author: ramit

Date: 15 Nov 2006 3:39 pm

Welcome to the Forum!

Sounds like my old Sears Machine.
I had it down to a fairly quick process,, did it soo much.
Use to chew through 1-2 belts a year... much more when I used the stock belts.. changed over to a GATES belt from the auto store. Lasted longer.

On mine the process went like this:

Remove the chute rotation rod.

Remove the plastic pully cover thats in front of the engine.

Lossen the 4 bolts, 2 on each side, that are where the augar housing meets the square drive housing.

Remove the two upper bolts.

Push down on the rear handle and the machine should come apart.
You may have to put aside the front augar belt.. push it off the pully to the front if it's not broken - or just cut it.I never had to, cause mine was always gone, in pieces at the bottom of that cavity.

Once it's cracked in half.. remove the two from each other..
my machine had like "C" on the side/bottom of the augar housing that hooked onto the bolt on the drive housing/chassis.. so the two halfs natural pivoted on that.. made it nice to take apar and put back together again.

Once apart there were 4 long retaining/guide bolts, that were guides to retain the belt when it wasnt under tension. Remove those 4 bolts.
I think there were two on the engine side by the upper pully set.. remove those long bolts too.
Replace the belt on the lower pully on the augar housing pully. Leave the top hoop of the belt leaning forward and pulled up..
Join the two sections together at the two lower side bolts... then tilt the two sections togther, get the two top bolts in to hold the two halfs together. Have long punch on hand to line up the holes.

Get the bolt up onto the to the top pully.. replace the two top guide post/bolts..

put the pully cover back on.

put the chute rotation rod back on.

Author: mishka

Date: 15 Nov 2006 8:10 pm

I don't think you have to separate front and back to replace belt. Try stand up snowblower forward on bucket remove bottom cover, loose belts tensionors and see if you can slide off auger and drive belts between friction disk and drive-plate ....I did that way on my Snapper it should be similar...make sure snowblowers supported so it's not full forward upside-down or fall back on you if you decide to try my method

Author: Majorxlr8n

Date: 15 Nov 2006 11:36 pm

Hi Mellon & Welcome! :D

I usually remove the belly pan at the bottom rear of the machine. That gives you ample access to the lower pulley for belt removal.

I have had good results getting belts between 2 tight pulleys without loosening the bolts that attach the auger bucket to the "tractor" frame. Use a wooden dowel to force the belt between the 2 pulleys. Remove the spark plug wire & slowly rotate the engine via the starter rope. Use the dowel again to continue to slide the belt downward. Takes a few times to get it cleared of both pulleys. Align belt on the upper & lower pulleys - DONE!


Author: mellon1

Date: 16 Nov 2006 8:12 am

Gentlemen, thanks for the quick responses... I really appreciate this. I'll give this a try on Saturday and let you know how it all works out.

THanks again,

Author: JimD

Date: 16 Nov 2006 1:01 pm

I might be blowing smoke, but I was thinking about when I did this on my Hahn-Eclipse (the frame doesn't come apart). Some time after I did that job (it worked out fine except for the few parts I always seem to have leftover) and nothing has fallen off yet, I had to buy a drive belt for my 1961 Craftsman tablesaw that I had restored. I didn't know what size to get. One of the guys in the local woodworking club had told us about a HD universal belt kit that worked great in the larger tablesaws. It came as a long belt made up of interlocking pieces that could be reassembled into just about any length you wanted. The benefit was that you didn't have to guess the size you needed if you didn't already know it and-it completely eliminated any table vibration and noise caused by standard belt construction. It was a HD plastic kind of segmented belt. I got mine from a woodworking show. It's been on my tablesaw for over 10 years and will probably last longer than I will. I'd be willing to try one of those on a blower if I had to do that job again. You could just cut off the old belt, match the length, put it on and back to square one-a pretty quick fix if it worked.

Just thinkin'


Author: mrmom

Date: 16 Nov 2006 9:40 pm

JimD, I wonder if that belt you have on the tablesaw would have the same tensil strength as a blower belt?

Author: mellon1

Date: 19 Nov 2006 10:38 am

Just an update... I managed to install the new belt successfully yesterday... :D

I disconnected the aurger housing, as suggested by many of you.

I used a rachet strap to hold the the auger housing and other halve of the machine together, while removing the top nuts on the auger housing. I then just loosened the bottom nuts, there-by causing the upper portion to hinge open. This allowed me enough room to remove the old belt and install the new one.

The usage of the rachet strap proved to be an invaluable piece of advice, since I was alone when doing this job. Otherwise, I would have had enormous difficulty lining up the upper auger housing bolt holes when re-connecting the auger housing to the machine. Having said this though, it's preferrable to have 2 people, in case of problems.

The only down-side of all this, if there is one, is that I can never trust that damn Sears manual again. I've lost confidence in it. Then again, there's always this forum. :)

Anyway, thanks again folks and enjoy the upcoming Thanksgiving holiday. :D


Author: ramit

Date: 19 Nov 2006 11:40 am

Glad to here it went well.

The one nice thing about the sears manual I had, was the exploded view with part numbers was real nice. There's wasn't anything I couldn't order , as I found out over my years of repeated repairs.