help with lawnmover

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  #1  
Old 09-20-08, 05:12 PM
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help with lawnmover

Hi, I have a B&S mod 917388831

It starts up just fine, then cuts off after 2-3 seconds. I cleaned the already recently changed air filter. I changed the gas, nothing seemed to work.

I am not sure if this is related to my problem, but here is what happened first. A couple of months ago, I lost the governor spring. So a friend put a thin wire there temporarily. Worked just fine, then the wire broke. I tried to find some more wire, but couldn't so used a paper clip - was desperate. In hindsight, I think that was stupid. The engine roared on top speed - and I was determined to mow the lawn - kindy scary doing it, but did it. After that I did go get a governor spring - just put it on today, and now I am having the problem - cuts off after a few seconds. Wonder if I messed up the spark plug?

Any help would be appreciated - trying to learn better maintenance of this machine.
I already killed my last one, by mowing over a stump. I didn't know I had bent the blade, and kept using the lawnmower for weeks - vibrated like all get out, until the wheel finally fell off. I had the worst callouses on my hands.

Thanks Anyone!
 
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  #2  
Old 09-20-08, 07:33 PM
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the answer to all your problems (HOPEFUALLY)

The relay is shutting down your motor because its getting to hot. or your coil is burned up... Beer 4U2
 
  #3  
Old 09-20-08, 07:56 PM
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There's no relay on that mower.

There's no telling what damage the insides of that engine endured while mowing the grass at wide open throttle. If the engine even starts at all, it's a wonder. When the engine dies, does it restart normally?
 
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Old 09-20-08, 08:08 PM
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I started it up about six times - died after a few seconds each time. I could try it again tomorrow and see if it will start. It did need priming each time to start it, which I thought odd.
Gosh - I hope I didn't kill it.

Thanks for all your help!

Meera
 
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Old 09-20-08, 08:16 PM
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If it re-starts, requiring a prime each time, I'd say there is trash and/or water in the carb. Remove the carb bowl and have a look...it may be evident when you see it.
 
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Old 09-20-08, 08:26 PM
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Thanks, Cheese! I will try it tomorrow and let you know. I so hope this is all that is wrong with it. I have never removed a carb before, but I am game on trying.

Meera
 
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Old 09-20-08, 08:29 PM
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You probably won't even have to remove the carb, just the bowl from the bottom of it. Just clamp off the fuel line so that gas doesn't run the whole time the bowl is off.
 
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Old 09-20-08, 08:38 PM
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I looked at the manuel - and it doesn't show the bowl. Is it obvious when I look at the lawnmower to find? And is it easy to take off? It's night now, and in the shed out back.
 
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Old 09-20-08, 08:45 PM
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What engine make and model is on it? The bowl is just the "cup" on the bottom of the carburetor. It's quite obvious when you see the carb, what part the bowl is.
 
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Old 09-20-08, 08:54 PM
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Its a briggs and stratton craftsman 4.5 hp 917 388831
but I will look at it tomorrow when it's light. I should be able to figure it out. I will let you know. Thank you so much.
 
  #11  
Old 09-21-08, 07:44 PM
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For Cheese

Cheese - I got my lawnmower working.

I checked the mower to try and find the carb bowl - and had no clue what to look for. So I got on the net to search for how to locate the carb bowl. I came across a post in another machine forum,someone else having the same problem as I was, and it was suggested to start priming while the lawnmower was on the 3 seconds that it would only stay on for. Worked beautifully.

Toward the end of cutting my yard, I did notice a very subtle sputter in the engine. Not sure what it was. Maybe I will be able to get someone over my house to show me how to take the carb bowl off, and where it even is. Still couldn't find a picture of it. Also read a post about the carb bowl gasket being very tricky to put back on - probably have to get a new one. Do you think my problem is solved?

Thanks so much for all your help - without you, I would not have taken the first step.

Meera
 
  #12  
Old 09-22-08, 08:37 PM
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The number you posted is the sears number for the mower, not the engine number. This sounds like a tecumseh engine. If so, look behind the air filter, and that is where the carb is. The bowl is the silver colored cup at the bottom of the carb, held on with a bolt in the middle, underneath. Take that bolt out and clean the tiny holes in it. There are 4. 2 oppose each other near the head of the bolt, one goes down the center, and one tiny one that is probably causing your problem is in an un-threaded section of the bolt near the end. If it is clogged, it will be very hard to see. Use a piece of wire from a bread bag twist tie to clean it if you don't have suitable tools for carb cleaning.
 
  #13  
Old 09-23-08, 04:27 PM
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The carburetor on this engine is a diaphragm type carburetor (Pulsa Prime) and does not have a float bowl. You may have a leaking diaphragm causing the sputter, I would recommend removing the carburetor from the fuel tank, cleaning with some spray type carburetor cleaner and a new diaphragm.
 
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Old 09-23-08, 09:11 PM
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Ah, that's why you didn't see the bowl. 30yearTech must've looked up the sears # and got the engine number from there. Good call, and I agree about the diaphragm.
 
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