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40 Reviews Write a review
28 Reviewers (70.0%) would recommend this to a friend.
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Most Helpful Reviews

Praise15 found this helpful
OlderView
May 29 , 2010
Craftsman 28" Rear Engine Rider Mower Model 28034 - Great!

I just bought the mower this April.  It cuts the yard great. Compact so it is easy to store in my garage.  It doesn't scalp the lawn and has plenty of power for going up hills.  Yes it is the same as a Snapper.  Check the manuals on line.  I ordered the Ninja mulching blade and it works great (has Snapper stamped on the blade).  Yes you can pick up the front and stand it on end.  Nothing spills out!  I put the Ninja blade on using this method.  Wow that make everything so easy!  Cost a little more than some of the other small mowers, but you are getting a quality piece of equipment.  A little hard to find on Sears Web site lately, but it seems to be listed again.  When you search for parts online the mower model number Sears uses on their User Manual is 107.280340.

Criticism6 found this helpful
Kenrim
Nov 25 , 2012
The most dangerous tractor ever
This is the, "worst" product Sears has ever put their name on. Shifts very hard, hard to operate, the only grass catcher that will fit, is impossible to operate, it tore after 2 uses, and it is very expensive. Engaging the blade is a pain in the ****. Very aggravating, battery cover will not stay on. Don't wast your money.
 

Roswell1

Woodstock, GA

Jan 28 , 2014
Overall
Best mower ever

old style Snapper riding mower that has proven its self time and time again. I bought this same style mower from Snapper back in 1987 and its still running.

I would recommend this product to a friend.

The reviewer indicated they are affiliated with this product. The reviewer indicated they received a sample of this product.
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Masterofsparks

Pittsburgh, PA

May 4 , 2013
Overall
Nice mower

I bought one @ the outlet store and ordered the mulch blade. Mower started right up and cuts pretty good. I received the mulch kit and as others here have said, the blade was not sharp at all. I hand sharpened it and it does mulch up the grass pretty good. I notice that it doesn't cut well in tight turns, it sort of pushes the grass over a bit. (Hence only 4 stars) It does well on straightaways, so perhaps I just have to learn some cutting tricks. Others complain about the safety features, but I don't have any problems with the blade engage, etc. I would like to have the bagger attachment, but can't afford it right now. All in all, I am pretty happy with this mower. In it's size, which I needed a smaller cut width because of gates and also because I only have about 1 acre to cut, it is the best choice. This is a Snapper and this style and drivetrain has been around for quite a few years. Plus it fits in the garage and the tilt up feature will be good for winter storage.


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Kenrim

Pasadena, MD

Nov 25 , 2012
Overall
The most dangerous tractor ever

This is the, "worst" product Sears has ever put their name on. Shifts very hard, hard to operate, the only grass catcher that will fit, is impossible to operate, it tore after 2 uses, and it is very expensive. Engaging the blade is a pain in the ****. Very aggravating, battery cover will not stay on. Don't wast your money.


The reviewer indicated they are affiliated with this product.
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ForeverCraftsman

Tarpon Springs, FL

Aug 30 , 2012
Overall
Clutch Assy. wears out way too quickly

Bought my mower Jan. 2010. Clutch Assy. has been replaced twice and needs to be replaced again. Mower is great on level ground but once the clutch assy. has a little wear will not climb the slightest incline.


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unengineer

Gibsonville, NC

Aug 11 , 2012
Overall
Sweet Miniture Tractor

This Craftsmen tractor is perfect for intricate landcapes

I would recommend this product to a friend.

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LanaDillon

Salisbury Mills, NY

Jun 25 , 2012
Overall
Little guy does it all

For a small ride on this is a good bet. If you have an acre or so this does the job. Easy to manuever and fun to ride.

I would recommend this product to a friend.

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jzwill

Aurora, IL

Jun 15 , 2012
Overall
The Rear Engine 28" Riding Mower Is A Rough Ride

I have had this mower for a bit over 2 years. Basically it has been quite serviceable for the price. My principal complaint is the rough ride. Not until checking some other mowers did I realize the seat is not mounted on springs; hence the rough ride. Availability of parts/service may be a problem. Many parts are available from Snapper dealers.


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sassi345

Durham, NC

May 31 , 2012
Overall
Craftsman 28 Inch Riding Mower

I owned an antique Sears 3-in-One Rider for 16 years which was very reliable and replaced it with this Snapper model. It's been like going from a turtle to a hare. The engine starts and runs beautifully every time, the frame is heavy duty and I really appreciate the handy oil-change spout & easy battery access. It also pulls my loaded utility trailer like a champ with energy to spare. The dynamics of the new machine, however, are very different with lightning-fast responses and 25% more power. I have to be very mindful about getting too close to fences or tree trunks as the wheel sometimes grabs and the machine will start climbing before I can brake whereas the older mower would just stop. For safety I don't mow higher than 2nd gear because it's easy to lose control. My yard is complex and hilly and the frame length is longer & center of gravity higher on the new rider which has limited some of my movements and forced more time with the weedwhacker/trim mower. I had 3 immediate problems: the steering was too stiff, the rear tire had a gash and the vinyl discharge chute cracked and exploded apart on the first use. Since there are no lube ports the Sears technician applied WD-40 to 3 points on each wheel post which helped the steering and recommended NOT rinsing the frame but blowing it clean or wiping with a damp rag to avoid rusting the joints. He also suggested inflating the tires to 30 psi all around (manual says 15 and 12 psi front to back) but the higher pressure tends to cause sliding on turns which adds to the out-of-control feeling. I'm still experimenting to find the right balance. He also replaced the tire, chute and installed the mulching kit. I was very impressed with Sear's effort to satisfy me. As for the controls, the stiff blade height lever has loosened some in 2 months and I've gotten used to the blade control stick. I do like the safety features with the automatic blade stop and reverse lock-out and feel they are really required on this unit. I remain concerned about the quality of the discharge chute and mulching cover, though, hence only 4 stars. I may try fortifying them with a metal liner since I have lots of pine cones and can't avoid them all. Overall, a very nice machine, just don't overdrive it.

I would recommend this product to a friend.

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lilmissdos

Plymouth, PA

May 11 , 2012
Overall
Simple tough design for smaller yards

If you think a larger lawn tractor is overkill for your size yard, this smaller time-tested design may be perfect for you. Mows very well and starts easy. Unlike larger tractors, can be pull started if necessary. Front chassis twists to conform to the yard so cut is straight and smooth and not prone to scalping. Highly recomend the mulching kit. This mower is made by Snapper (their's is red), so parts are available at any dealer.

I would recommend this product to a friend.

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dba22

Saginaw, MI

Apr 21 , 2012
Overall
Craftsman 28 in. 15.5 Hp riding Lawn Tractor

I purchased this mower about 3 weeks ago and have used it twice with good results. The only hitch so far is that it was the floor demo model and was delivered with a dead battery. The salesman however, personally delivered a fresh battery the same day and it started right up with no further issues. The bagging attachment was back ordered and just arrived today so I have yet to use it. Regardless of the battery problem which was quickly resolved, I anticipate that this mower will be of great assistance to me in the coming years. Even though my yard is small, I am getting too old to do the push mower thing especially in the heat and this machine eliminates most of that work. As we all know, most Sears branded merchandise is made by other companies and this mower is no exception but that's a good thing. The design has been around many years and is proven as is the Briggs engine. The only design flaw that I've noticed is that it is almost impossible to engage the cutting blade because the lever is nearly out of reach and requires considerable effort. I may try to attach something to the lever to make it longer but even if not, blade engagement is something that only needs to be done a couple of times during a cutting. If that's all that ever turns out to be negative about this mower, I'll be well satisfied. For someone in their later years, this may just be a way to reduce the effort required to mow that grass especially in the heat of summer. It fits through my standard size gate with ease.

I would recommend this product to a friend.

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rsmith901

Independence, MO

Apr 18 , 2012
Overall
Craftsman 28 In. Rear Engine Lawn Tractor

Great rear engine tractor, actually made by Snapper & branded Sears and painted black instead of the Snapper red. This engine does NOT have the the electronic needle valve and fuel solenoid that 99% of all riding tractors have today. I had Toro Z380 zero turn previously, had nothing but problems with carburetor dumping fuel in the oil, every time the electronic needle valve & fuel solenoid went bad. Got tired of it after 2 years of lightly being used, pushed it to the curb with FREE sign on it. People were just about fighting to get it, I was glad to get rid of it! My previous Snapper just like this Sears RE rider is still running fine after 8 years, my son has it now. Trust me, you just can't beat this mower for a small to medium yard to cut ... very easy to maintain yourself and clean. This same mower was $400 cheaper than the same Snapper brand. I highly recommend this product.

I would recommend this product to a friend.

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N1ffer

Birmingham, MI

Mar 29 , 2012
Overall
Happy so far

I bought this yesterday so I am giving an initial review after the first use. We purchased this vehicle not because of our yard size, but actually because of storage. We have a three car garage, however with three cars and four kids we don't really have much extra space. The narrow width and ability to store this mower upright were key buying factors. PLEASE NOTE - I spent some time with the SEARS prep person yesterday with this. He stated that SOME years have a battery tray that swings when the tractor is stored upright to avoid battery acid from leaking. Some years do not have this function and instead have a fixed tray. If you do not have a sealed battery (comes with an unsealed battery from the factory) you should remove your battery before you store upright as the acid will leak from the battery with potential to kill your battery as well as potentially cause rust or damage to hoses or electrical components on the tractor or on other items near your storage spot. My initial impressions are positive. I am 6"4" and 205 lbs and I was comfortable with the seat all the way back. Seat adjusts fairly easily with two quick release knobs underneath. The design is simple and efficient. This mower is actually made by Snapper and has been for many years. The good news of this is if you ever need parts and Sears discontinues this model, you can get parts from Snapper (although they may be red in color instead of green! lol) The controls are set up ok. I found the grass height adjustment lever required some good strength to adjust, however you really won't need to adjust too often. The mower blade engagement lever for my height was a little low for my height, but a shorter person may find it ok. I haven't tried the reverse lever lock out over ride option yet, but probably will so I can mow in reverse and not have to re-engage the mow lever as often so I won't need to bend down for the mower engagement lever. The unit seemed to start up fine on multiple start ups yesterday. It was about 50 degrees and dry. Used choke lever and started fine and warmed up quickly. No sputter and smooth. Another review stated it was very loud, I did not notice that. Seemed like a normal 12.5 hp Briggs to me. The clutch pedal adjustment is a little inconsistent based on the cable design and I noticed sometimes that when I would feather the pedal for light braking going downhill it would slow down, but not re-engage the transmission when I let off. I would have to push the clutch all the way down and release to engage the trans. Probably not a flaw in the system, it most likely is not designed for anything other than full engage and release, however it would be nice to lightly brake to control your downhill speed. I didn't particularly like the design or the look of the steering wheel at the store, but it functioned well enough and allowed enough leg clearance for my long legs. Once mowing I was very satisfied with the operation. The "floating" chassis is very nice for the slight curves, slopes and undulations of our lawn. On the 3 setting I noticed some scalping, so I went up to setting 4 and had no issues. The chassis twisting does take a bit of getting used to as your rump will lean with the rear of the tractor, but your hands and feet will stay with the front of the tractor. Not a big deal and it is nice not to have the grass scalped. I believe someone stated this function is dangerous and this model should not be sold. I do not find the floating chassis unsafe. This tractor has been around for probably 30 years or more with Snapper. I doubt it would still be sold if it was unsafe. The actual cutting was satisfactory. I haven't yet looked at the blade to make sure it was sharpened and rust free, but it cut well and consistent. There were no wierd lines of grass like one review noted, but it is a side discharge, so it you do not have a mulching blade and you are cutting tall grass, there will be a line of grass as it exits the side discharge shute. I was most impressed by the power to climb hills. I have a walk out basement, so my yard drops from front to back about 12 feet down over a 24 foot run. It also drops more sharply at the rear of the property as it goes down to a marshy pond area. I had absolutely no problems with my 205 lbs going up these hills in 1st gear. I was impressed as I was concerned this tractor would not make it up some of them. Overall I cut in mostly 1st gear with a little bit of 2cnd. I didn't really notice much difference between gear 1 and 2. Yes, I did notice if you pop the clutch too quickly it will jump. Because the transmission can up shift without the clutch while in motion, there is really no need to start in 4 and have it take off like a rocket. Take off in 1st and upshift should work. I didn't try to down shift while in motion and do not know if the transmission will allow. Overall easy to use and a smooth first time operation. I haven't used to tow anything, but it does have a hole for a hitch and saftey chains in the rear frame and I don't expect it would struggle too much towing a sweeper, de-thatcher or small yard cart. Overall I am very happy on my first cut. The Snapper build, Sears support, 12.5 hp Briggs engine, narrow storage requirements, verticle storage and overall ease of my first use lead me to believe this was a good purchase. I will update if there are any reliability issues moving forward.

I would recommend this product to a friend.

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walt1941

Taylor, TX

Mar 28 , 2012
Overall
Avoid Stress.. Really Bad Mower

First It would help if you were a contortionist to operate this machine. To start mowing, you must reach down between your legs, with the steering wheel holding you back, and attempt to move a short lever forward to engage the blade. While doing this you must keep a safety plate pressed down with your feet while depressing the clutch. These "safety" features actually make it unsafe. The second time I used it the engine suddenly quit. I got off and noted the gas tank had fallen off. I replaced it and used electrical ties to hold it on. There was nothing holding the tank in place. After using it four times I hired a lawn service and stood the mower on it's end for storage, (One of it?s Features). After a couple of hours I noticed ALL of the oil had run out on the floor. I cleaned up the oil spill and sat the mower down on all four wheels. After about three months I decided to try and use it again. As I started to pour oil into the engine , I noticed the oil running out onto the floor again. A close inspection found the plastic filler tube had a hole in it and would crumble when touched. I set the 11 month old mower on the front lawn with a sign "FREE" Would I recommend this mower? SURE


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robjr

Carmel, IN

Mar 26 , 2012
Overall
Craftsman 28" RE lawn mower 28034

Very happy with this purchase and overall quality. Bought this for 1/2 acre lot. I looked at Snapper RE and this seems almost identical. I went with Sears thinking acquiring service would be easier. Although turn radius isn't great - I'm really glad I purchased this 28" RE lawn mower. The size, quality, and decades of proven performance were contributing factors in my purchase. The mower was delivered by Sears in good condition and professional delivery crew.

I would recommend this product to a friend.

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dan54

Vidor, TX

Dec 6 , 2011
Overall
Craftsman 28 single blade

I like the single blade, oil filter, and the way you can stand it on it's end for storage. oh yea, the most important, The exhaust fumes are behind you and not in front where you have to drive thru it.

I would recommend this product to a friend.

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meinnc

Sanford, NC

Oct 15 , 2011
Overall
no turn12.5 mower is good on smaller falt lawns.

I have a front and backyard that were taking me a couple hours with self-propelled. In the heat of the summer it's a very long two hours. The lawns are flat and square with no obstacles, so this mower works fine. Yes it is noisy and it ain't got no hemy, but it does the job in allot less time. I hope it has the durability that my other craftsman products have had.

I would recommend this product to a friend.

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IHAVEALIFE60

Nampa, ID

Oct 6 , 2011
Overall
HAD THE MOWER FOR ONLY 2 WEEKS AND COULD NOT EVEN START THE IT

MOWER WOULD NOT START AND WHEN WE PICKED UP MOWER THEY DIDN'T HAVE A KEY FOR IT NOR DID THEY HAVE THE MANUAL.  SALE GUY HAD TO DOWNLOAD THE OWNERS MANUAL AND FIND ANOTHER KEY. ONCE WE GOT IT HOME IT WOULD NOT START WE CHARGED THE BATTERY AND STILL WOULD START.  SALES ORDERED THE WRONG BAG SO WE HAD TO WAIT ANOTHER WEEK FOR THE BAG.  NOT HAPPY AT ALL.


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garycris

New Fairfield, CT

Sep 23 , 2011
Overall
Pretty good mower

Overall I really like this mower, it gets the job done for me, fits in the space I need and it to works through my yard in a good amount of time.  As others have written there are a couple of tips like easing off the clutch, making sure the air valve is open on gas cap and engaging break to start it.  It has been reliable for me as I wrap up my second season with it.  Actually, I'll still be using it through fall as I mow up the leaves with the mulch blade.

Quick tip for the other poster who said you can't go in reverse with mower blades on.  This is actually a safety feature that you can override if you think of it ahead of time.  Along side the shifter is a little metal latch.  If you hold the latch before you step on the safety foot plate when you engage the mower blades, the path to reverse will stay open and you can mow in reverse, I do it all the time.  It did take me a little while to figure it out.

I would recommend this product to a friend.

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backyardgrouch

Little Rock, AR

Sep 19 , 2011
Overall
28" gets it through the gate

I originally bought the snapper 10 years ago because it fit through my gate openings, but it was a pull start.  I have been happy with it all this time, & even though it still works well, I saw the craftsman on sale and bought it for the electric start, plus my mulcher & bagger will fit.  The turning radius is much smaller, and the only complaint is that you have to release the blade to shift into reverse. It WILL do a little wheelie when you release the clutch, but a little excitement is not a bad thing. Keep your filters changed.... 

I would recommend this product to a friend.

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mugga

Springfield, LA

Sep 16 , 2011
Overall
So far, so good

I originally was looking for a riding mower to fit through the door of the 40 year old shed. It does that wonderfully. We've only cut our 3/4 acre once so I don't have long experience with this yet. I had been comparison shopping for over a year, and waiting for Sears to have a sale on it. I just kept remembering that , years past, with no more hp, we had lawn tractor which were well built, efficient, and small enough to store without building a new individual shelter! This seemed to fit the bill. The price was a bit steep but I saved about $400 with the sale and I think I'll get my money's worth. Our yard is lumpy and lots to cut around but this little tractor seemed up to the task. It seems to be sturdily built and very peppy. It's also fairly comfortable, both for a small woman and a large man. It does jump when you put it in gear so I'd be careful if you had young teens cutting your grass.. But, as I said in the title, so far, so good.

I would recommend this product to a friend.

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oldblue

Morris, IL

Sep 6 , 2011
Overall
Craftsman 12hp briggs and straton with 28" deck and mulch attach

This lawnmower leaves stretches of grass all over the place. I've been mowing for 50 years and this is the worst mower  I have ever used.  Sears repair has been out 3 times and it has made no difference at all.  The only good thing I can say is it has power to go up my hill in the back yard. I would NOT recommend this mower to anyone!!!


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kennybskdj

Saint Louis, MO

Aug 24 , 2011
Overall
Craftsman 28& 12.5 hp Gas Powered Riding Tractor

This is the first riding mower that I like after working out all the kinks. 1st  make sure that the brake / clutch is engaged, it won't start if it's not. 2nd the gas cap has a release pressure valve that you must unscrew,or it will stall out. 3rd when you are in gear 3-5 ease off the brake slowly because you'll get bucked quickly. Last thing to remember is to get a 12 v battery charger,the battery will run down after so many starts. Like with anything new be patience and follow the Instruction Manual and you'll save time and fustrations. Happy cutting days ahead :)

I would recommend this product to a friend.

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RegularGuyMy2Cents

Bradenton, FL

Aug 15 , 2011
Overall
This is a great mower for my Florida yard.

I have a above average sized Florida yard (about 1/3 acre) with tough Bahia grass, which grows 4-5 inches high in a week.  I was tired of the push mower and the lack of help from my familiy.  I did a lot of research and chose this riding mower for several reasons:

  • Proven Snapper design, esp the transmission
  • Small width to get through my gate
  • Electric start
  • Hi-Vac
  • Ease of Use

This mower works very well for my lawn situation.   My teenage son and my wife both assist with the mowing while I do the dirty work of edging and trimming.  When I do get to mow, it is great.

Only two drawbacks. One is that there seems to be lawn tractors that give you more horsepower and options for the money, however they are much wider and wont fit through my gate.The other con is the turning radius.  However, I use the reverse feature in tight spots in my backyard. 


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ewalk

Leesburg, VA

Aug 2 , 2011
Overall
Craftsman 28" Riding Lawn Tractor

I bought this riding mower to replace the defective Craftsman 28001 30" Riding Lawn Mower I purchased earlier this year.  The transmission on the 28001 went out after only 5 mows and I, like others who have shared my experience, returned it and paid the difference to upgrade to this 28" 12.5 HP Craftsman tractor.  I am more than satisfied with this mower.  It is better made, has more power, is able to climb hills, and is an overall better product.  Five stars for me.

I would recommend this product to a friend.

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shaputisr

Brownsville, OR

Jul 19 , 2011
Overall
This lawn mower is a death trap, hard to use and controls suck.

I recently bought this lawn mower because it was on sale, if I didn;t have to pay a restock fee I would return it. The controls are all in the wrong places and are very hard to use. The turning radius  sucks. I bought it because I have a smaller yard but due to health reasons I need a riding mower. I am on a fixed income so the 6 month no interest appealed to me. When you put the lawn mower in gear and realease the brake the mower jumps. It's turning radious makes it hard to get around objects, you have to go back and forth many times. Since you do engaging the cutting blades wih the short handle buts a strain on your back. The mower bounces so much that it kills my arthritus. This lawn mower is not worth the amount I had to pay for it. I should have stayed with the more conventional mower. DO NOT LET YOUR CHILDREN DRIVE THIS MOWER, they will freak out and end up getting hurt. Whoever came up with this idea should be pistol whipped. I have always bought Sears products and within the last year I have spent a lot of money at your store. But this product you should pull from your line of riding mowers. Operating it makes me break out in a sweat. No other mower has done that.


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