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Old 06-15-2010, 11:03 PM
 
219 posts, read 954,936 times
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most likely a carb problem. what kind of mower is it? usually the carbs have a screw that you can drain the carb with. drain the gas in the carb and then try to start it up again and see what happens.

if that doesn't work then i'm afraid you'll probably have to take the carb off and clean out the jet that the fuel passes through. it sounds intimidating but if you're at all mechanically inclined just google cleaning lawn mower carb and you'll see a variety of sites that walk you through it. depending on how old your mower is you might need a carb rebuild kit that contains a new gasket and bowl.
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Old 06-16-2010, 06:13 PM
 
432 posts, read 3,198,702 times
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I took the whole lawn mower apart and the only weird thing i saw was a frayed spark plug wire. could that be the cause of what i'm describing?
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Old 06-16-2010, 06:26 PM
 
28,673 posts, read 41,196,392 times
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Smell gas? If the fuel line is leaking you might be getting air in the line, or it's not feeding gas correctly.
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Old 06-16-2010, 06:27 PM
 
1,135 posts, read 1,897,851 times
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Every year I remove spark plug and spray the plug and inside hole with WD40, add some dry gas wiht fuel and wash filter with gasoline and open plastic flap and spray with WD40. My Dad taught me this when I was 10 and mowing yard for a living and have done it every single year for the past 34 years.....never had a single mower problem!
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Old 05-13-2011, 04:10 PM
 
1 posts, read 12,170 times
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having the same problem described above with my mower. just replaced spark plug & air filter, but still same issue... it will run for about 20 seconds & then shut itself off.
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Old 05-14-2011, 06:19 PM
 
20,324 posts, read 18,322,261 times
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We have an old Toro lawnmower from about 1973. It runs fine but a wheel bolt broke and I can't find a replacement online. The univesal bolts they sell are too thick( 1/2"), I'm guessing it needs a 1/4". The part is no longer made, naturally. I've been watching for old mowers that people sell but no luck. I've found other parts for it on partstree, but not the one part I need.
Are there any big mower salvage places that might have a website?
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Old 05-16-2011, 05:43 AM
 
Location: Tampa Bay Area
494 posts, read 1,465,016 times
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Mine had the exact same symptom. Doesn't really mean the same problem. I took the carburator apart and cleaned the float assembly. It was very easy, just a pin and a couple parts. Put it back together and everything was fine. Figured something in there got gunked up.

The primer is giving it gas and it's firing. Sounds like something is restricting the gas flow in "run mode". Could be clogged fuel lines, fuel filter, carb, anything in that process.
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Old 05-16-2011, 06:26 AM
 
Location: Western Washington
8,004 posts, read 10,337,041 times
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Do you have a small pin hole in your gas cap?...or some other sort of "air intake". Some mowers do, and it could be clogged and causing a vacuum, which could be affecting the fuel flow! A pin will unclog it, if that's the case. Also, someone already mentioned draining the gas and putting fresh fuel....NO topping...start with brand new fuel. Is your throttle cable working properly, or is is sticking....or the choke?
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Old 05-16-2011, 06:58 AM
 
20,324 posts, read 18,322,261 times
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Theres a spring on the outside of the carburetor that I think is called the throttle governor spring. If that breaks the throttle will open and close even if the throttle is set. Ours broke( on the 1973 Toro) and it took a lot of adjusting to set it.
I take the spark plug out and spray some carb cleaner into the chamber as well as behind the muffler. I also spray into the carb after I remove and clean the air filter at the start of the season.
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Old 05-16-2011, 04:33 PM
 
Location: Austin, TX
16,760 posts, read 42,350,315 times
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Could be the vent on the fuel cap is plugged. Once the engine runs long enough (consuming gas) to create a vacume in tank, fuel stops running into the carberator. Had that happend with an outboard boat engine when I forgot to open the air vent on the fuel tank.
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