Engine won't idle

Old 09-30-02, 02:41 PM
J A Boggan
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Question Engine won't idle

I have a Briggs & Stratton 17 Hp, I/C engine. Model - 42A707, Type - 1653-01, Code - 9506285A - It's a twin opposing cylinder engine. It dosen't have a steady speed on idle (the speed seems to be hunting, rather badly). I took the air filter off to where I could see the choke, seems to be OK. I've checked the spark and the compression (90+ lbs. on each cylinder). I thought I would try to rebuild the carburator next. Any ideas on this problem?
Old 09-30-02, 07:55 PM
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Hello: J A

Anything fuel related can cause engine surging, idling & running problems like or similar to your problem description.

First try adjusting the carb screws to alter the fuel to air mixture.

If an adjustment fails, check all fuel flow related items next.

Fuel flow out of the tank.
Tanks vent hole in the cap.
Fuel line and filter.
Carb float may be sticking or stuck.
Check the carbs bowl fuel level.
Plugged and or restricted carb internal fuel passages.

Valves and governor parts can also cause this type of problem.

The other resident small engine service and repair professionals may offer additional suggestions, advice & help.

Check back on your topic several times over the next several days for additional replies.

Regards & Good Luck,
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Old 09-30-02, 10:28 PM
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Try running it without the air filter. Those 17hp briggs engines are VERY sensitive to restricted air filters. Even if the filter looks ok. I had one that had a nice looking filter on it, so I rebuilt the carb....more than once, then tried a good carb off of a good running mower, still idled uneven. I removed the air filter with it running and the problem went away. Replaced it and the problem disappeared. I guess maybe the air filter had gotten wet at one point in time and let the mesh mat together enough to restrict air a bit.
Old 10-01-02, 04:51 AM
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Can't remember if that carb had a low idle screw but if it does slowly backing it out should clear this up. If not you have a jet/oriface restriction. These ideas of course come after the air filter trick which would go for Briggs Vanguard serie also......Mike
Old 10-01-02, 01:54 PM
J A Boggan
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Thanks fellows,
Mike you were right on top of it. Do you think I should go on and rebuild the carburator... or just leave well enough alone. Thanks again for a great forum.
Old 10-02-02, 05:31 AM
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If all is well at this time I wouldn't tear into it based on what I see in this thread. Add some fuel stabilizer to the last tank of gas this year and start the engine every 2-3 weeks, warming it completely, this winter and see how it does in the spring. Theres not much to "rebuild" in this carb and if its not leaking fuel, flooding or lean it has no problems.....Mike

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