2008 Craftsman Single Stage 21 inch Snow Thrower Model 88704 Review

Craftsman 123cc 4 cycle Single Stage Snow Thrower Model 88704 Review

NOTE: This snow thrower has been replaced. NOTE: Go here to see the latest snow throwers at Sears. Check Out Our Hottest Lawn & Garden Deals1x1.trans 2008 Craftsman Single Stage 21 inch Snow Thrower Model 88704 Review

Sears Item: 07188704000 Mfr. model# 88704

1x1.trans 2008 Craftsman Single Stage 21 inch Snow Thrower Model 88704 Review

The good news: This is a completely new snow thrower and looks to be a much better unit than the previous entry level Craftsman Snowblower.  The bad news: This is a completely new snow thrower and it has no service history.

Pros

- This is a completely new and redesigned snow thrower. It is the cheapest and simplest snowthrower Sears sells.  The design is simple. One handle controls the auger/blower.  To move the chute you simply stop the machine, reach down and adjust the chute.

- There is more metal in this snowblower than last years model.  Last years models 88140, 88141 were junk.  Just ask any of the experienced Sears Repair Techs.

- Overhead valve 123 cc fuel efficient engine.  Adequate power for the 21 inch width

- While the auger on the snowthrower is running you can lift the handle and the machine will pull itself into the snow.  (the spinning auger pulls the machine forward)

- Lightweight so you can lift it up stairs, etc.  Should work well for cleaning decks and patios.

- Balanced well. It is easy to push and use.

Cons

This is a completely new machine so there is no service record on it.  I think it is built better than last years Craftsman single stage units, but time will tell.

- It does NOT have electric start.

- Single-stage snow throwers do not throw the snow very far.  Sometimes they will not even throw the snow completely off your drive and you will have to move the snow twice to get your drive cleared.  Single-stage snowthrowers work well for 6 inches or less of snow but really increase your work if it snows more than that.  For example, I have a 28 inch two-stage snowblower …. my neighbor has a 22 inch single stage.  We both have about the same amount of driveway.  Last year we got an early snow, a bunch of 4 to 6 inchers and three snows of 12 inches or more.  We never had any days above freezing so the snow stayed all winter.  Because his single-stage snowblower didn’t throw snow as far as my two-stage by February my neighbor had snow piled higher than his pickup while I only had snow two feet deep along my drive.  Once when we had 14 inches and it took me 30 minutes to clear my drive.  I finally went over and helped him after he had been out there for over two hours.

- Because of the completely new machine including a new motor and the possiblility of your local repair shop not being able to easily get parts (read non-authorized Sears Repair Center) I would strongly suggest buying the optional protection plan on this machine.  Buying the optional protection plan will ensure the machine will work for 3 or 5 years.  Sears has two different types of plans available.  A 3 or 5 year plan where you bring it to your Sears store for repair and a 3 or 5 year plan where you call 1-800-4MY-HOME and Sears sends a mechanic right to your house.

In summary

This machine is not for me but it may be just what you need. It is a simple, basic single-stage snowblower. No, it doesn’t have a joystick chute control, six speeds, headlight, power steering and other accessories, but if a two-stage snowblower is just too big for your driveway, this snowthrower may be just what you need.

If you have a two car wide driveway (16 feet) where you can park two or more cars (40 feet) or longer. A two-stage machine may be a better choice for you.

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