After a seriously long day of leaf collection late this fall my 2008 x500 engine started to run unevenly. I changed the oil & filter, cleaned the air filter with warm soapy water, and improperly cleaned the paper element with compressed air (my inexperience). When I went to do my driveway with my 44 inch snowblower attachment a month later (today), it started unevenly but eventually ran well for about 10 minutes of blowing snow. It then started to run unevenly (hunting in and out until it died and gave me the red oil light. I put a new fuel filter in thinking that was the problem and let it be for a half an hour. It started up unevenly but within 10 seconds was running fine! I figured I was in the clear, but 20 minutes after blowing more snow, it happened again. The engine ran unevenly until it died on me and gave me the red oil light again. I just changed the oil 3 weeks ago and had not run it since. However I only put 2 quarts in when it calls for 2.1. Something tells me it's not the oil.
To me, the fact that it started for me after I let it rest and when it did run, it ran fine for 20 minutes or so - points to a overheating problem. The cause of this, to me, is puzzling and I'm wondering if someone could help me out.
Could it be a bad paper element / air filter (thanks to my inexperience of cleaning it with a compressed air)?
Could dirt have found it's way into the carburetor?
Is my fuel line gunked up? (it ran fine for 20 minutes after I changed the fuel filter)
My old man said maybe the spark arrestor? Never heard of it. ANY help would be GREATLY appreciated.