If Your Lawnmower Will Not Start Follow These Steps

The most common refrain in the spring is “My lawnmower will not start.”

The second most common statement, “My mower starts and dies.”

Engine need air, fuel and spark to ignite and run. Any of these may prevent an engine from starting. Checking each issue is easy for any homeowner. Here’s what to do if your lawnmower will not start.

  1. Drain Fuel and Start Fresh -Fuel left in the tank or your storage container throughout the winter may not ignite as well as fresh fuel. Dirt or moisture in fuel often clogs fuel lines and carburetors.
  2. Replace Air Filter – Dirt and debris prevent air from reaching the engine. A new air filter is very easy to install.
  3. Replace Spark Plug and Change engine oil – New spark plugs and fresh oil are a simple final step to helping a small engine. A firm connection between the spark plug and the cover is important. A brief video of performing a full tune up includes these steps
  4. Test engine – Yanking on the starter rope is a bad practice. Steady, even pull is best. Draw the recoil rope slowly. You will feel tension when the flywheel begins to turning. A firm tug on the rope is all that is needed. If the engine doesn’t catch on the first pull repeat the process 2-3 times.
  5. Still Won’t Start? – If an engine doesn’t start after following these steps, it is likely time to replace the carburetor or ignition coil. Damaged carburetors are easy to install and most don’t require calibration. Ignition coils and armatures control spark. If you have experience, you can install items yourself, but most homeowners should call professionals for this repair.
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