WHY does no one make a blasted gas trimmer or blower that will START dependably?

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  #1  
Old 04-02-12, 09:58 AM
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WHY does no one make a blasted gas trimmer or blower that will START dependably?

I swear, I am SO tired of picking up my trimmer or blower each spring, and the damn things won't start. Take it to the shop, and a hundred bucks or so later, then it works. Until the next year.

Oh, I think I answered my own question. Look at all the revenue the shops would lose if they actually made a unit that didn't crap out after a couple of seasons.

Yeah I know...it's most like the carbuerator, the stale gas...yada yada. I just want reliability...I want to pick it up, and it works. I guess that is too much to ask for a gas engine.

I have a Echo SRM210 trimmer and a PB-200 blower. Bioth won't start right now. I used the blower less than a month ago, after refeshing the gas and spraying some carb-cleaner on it, but I picked it up this weekend, and the primer bulb was cracked. So I spent HOURS trying to find a stupid primer bulb (another vent - WHY are these so hard to find locally? You can buy them all day long online. ) and I put that on last night, and still nothing. It looks to me like the grommet piece on the gas tank is gummy, so I guess I'll look for a fuel line kit and try that tonight.

Not sure what the problem is with the trimmer....but I replaced the fuel lines the last time I tried to get it started and never had any luck. I have not been able to get it started in a YEAR! I am trying to figure out if it's worth taking both back to the shop, or if I should just cave, and drop a few hundred on new ones. I am SOOOO tired of this.
 
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  #2  
Old 04-02-12, 11:17 AM
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Well...as we know...some of it is maintenance and new formulations of gas. I only have a gas blower since I moved to a house with no lawn. Just use it to blow other peoples leaves that collect in the yard, into piles for disposal I leave it outside on the porch (under a roof) all year long. Fill it up with a one gallon can that may get refilled 2 times a year (yes I use a fuel treatment).

Other than cleaning the air filter I haven't done any maintenance. It starts to cough after 3-4 pulls and will normally run after 2 more. Probably be better if I got a new plug and cleaned the carbon off.

The thing is...I use it year round. Might be a month between...but still year round.

I'd think your only options would be electric or propane....both have their own high costs associated with them. Propane...initial cost and fuel price. Electric...battery life and replacement cost. Corded electric is cheap, but limited by the cord.
 
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Old 04-02-12, 01:46 PM
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Originally Posted by Gunguy45 View Post
Well...as we know...some of it is maintenance and new formulations of gas. I only have a gas blower since I moved to a house with no lawn. Just use it to blow other peoples leaves that collect in the yard, into piles for disposal I leave it outside on the porch (under a roof) all year long. Fill it up with a one gallon can that may get refilled 2 times a year (yes I use a fuel treatment).

Other than cleaning the air filter I haven't done any maintenance. It starts to cough after 3-4 pulls and will normally run after 2 more. Probably be better if I got a new plug and cleaned the carbon off.

The thing is...I use it year round. Might be a month between...but still year round.

I'd think your only options would be electric or propane....both have their own high costs associated with them. Propane...initial cost and fuel price. Electric...battery life and replacement cost. Corded electric is cheap, but limited by the cord.
Electric may be what I do, for the blower, if I can't get this one fixed myself. I think it's nuts to keep throwing money after money on it. As far as the trimmer, I'd lose my mind if I had to keep up with a cord. I have a decent sized yard, with fencing and lots of landscaping. A cord would make my trimming very difficult. I just don't think I can go there.
 
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Old 04-02-12, 04:41 PM
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My sister has a Workz GT and loves it. You might want to check it out. At 70 it is difficult for her to pull the rope on a gas trimmer, i gave her the Workz trimmer, she gave me a Stihl BG 75 blower, FS46 trimmer, FS45 trimmer, 2 Troybilt trimmers. She is happy and I have more trimmers than I know what to do with. Have a good one. Geo
 
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Old 04-02-12, 09:21 PM
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Well I ordered carb kits for both units tonight. Fuel line kit too. I'll give it one more shot at repair, and after that, I'm tossing them. Found a blower that I will most likely buy...a Toro. It's electric, and since I only need a blower for my garage and driveway, that will work just fine.
 
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Old 04-02-12, 10:27 PM
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I use that same Echo blower you have. It sits unused with un-treated gas and in unfavorable conditions pretty much all year long until our short fall season, then I use it a few times. It almost always starts up with a little persuasion and then runs the rest of the season. It is old... probably 15 yrs old or more. I also use a trimmer that is similar to yours... it's an echo, but it's a model or two down, and curved shaft. It's the same... sits all winter with untreated gas in unfavorable conditions and starts right up in the spring. I've worn out one shaft/boom with it and am working on another. It's probably from the 1990s. Echo makes good stuff. If your stuff is old, then it served you well. The cheaper stuff doesn't usually last long enough to get old. If you buy a 2-stroke piece of lawn equipment and get 10 years out of it, you have a good unit. My saws are over 20 and still run well (husquvarna and stihl). Stihl trimmers also last a long time. The old FS series, especially the FS76 and FS80 are superior trimmers and are still used by landscapers all over the country. I bet some of them have over 1000 hours on them. A lowes/homedepot/walmart brand might do well to get 50 hours before it gets tossed.

I guess what I'm saying is, if you think what you have is un-reliable, wait until you get ahold of something else!
 
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Old 04-03-12, 05:23 AM
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Both units are about 6 years old. I think my money should have bought a lot more service than that.
 
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Old 04-03-12, 06:06 AM
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I have a 35cc Honda. The now 5 years old and it has always started on the first pull. Just a little pull and it just sits there quietly going "put, put, put...". For about $350 I have not found a general line trimmer. It is not as powerful as the my Stihl but it's sufficient for heavy grass and light brush trimming.

It is not a brute power wise. For a powerful line trimmer I have had a Stihl FS130R for three years now. It consistently takes 2-4 pulls to start when it's cold but never more, and it's got the Honda beat for power. It's not my favorite for normal grass trimming but if you've got to do heavy, tall weeds or brush cutting I think it's one of the best without stepping up to a bike handle style.

My parents are still using the Echo they bought 20 years ago. I can't remember the model number but it's definitely not the cheap disposable style. Every 4 or 5 years I have to pull the carb apart for a good cleaning but that always gets it back to starting after a couple pulls.
 
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Old 04-03-12, 05:33 PM
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Yeah, I'd expect more service out of an echo than 6 years, but whatever is causing your problems is going to cause those same problems and possibly more in other brand equipment also. If your rubber is getting gummy and your carburetor is constantly stopped up, then it's not the equipment's fault. It's the storage conditions, fuel, etc... If you are using ethanol fuel, that's going to be probably the largest contributor to your problems. When these were made, ethanol wasn't in fuels like it is today. Manufacturers are having to re-design components to accommodate the ethanol fuel. I don't know if you are aware of it or not, but Walbro and Zama make almost every carburetor for every trimmer, whether it's a $60 walmart special or a $400 stihl. The passages and components are tiny, by nature. Leaving old gas in them and letting it gum up isn't generally going to result in reliability. That's not Echo's fault.
 
  #10  
Old 04-30-12, 10:39 AM
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"Leaving old gas in them and letting it gum up isn't generally going to result in reliability. That's not Echo's fault. "


I agree, but for someone like me, that only uses these units maybe 5 or 6 months, at the MOST, of the year, it's a major PITA. Grumble grumble grumble.

The blower clearly needed a new grommet, so I put in a new fuel line kit, and a new primer bulb. Still not getting any gas at all into the primer bulb. So I guess the carb kit is the next step - right? I have the carb kit for both units now (pretty inexpensive - that was a nice surprise!), so as soon as I get time, I plan on attempting to do the carb on the blower, and see if that does it. Isn't that most likely the problem? What else could it be?

As far as the timmer, it has a new fuel line in it - I did that last year, and all of that looks fine. I guess the carb kit will be my next step there as well.

I did go ahead and buy a new Stihl trimmer. I couldn't wait until I found time to try the repair - I had to go out of town, and I needed to get my yardwork done. So, at best, I'll have a trimmer for back up, if I can get it working again!

As far as ethanol fuel, where on earth would I get gas that did not contain ethanol?
 
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Old 04-30-12, 11:13 AM
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I'm not sure...but I believe AvGas doesn't use ethanol. Pilot Dane had a post a few days ago about how he used it in his snowblower(?) and never used any Stabil or anything while it was in storage during the summer.

I'll see what I can find on that thread.
 
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Old 04-30-12, 11:16 AM
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  #13  
Old 04-30-12, 05:53 PM
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Yep, sounds like the carbs need cleaning. To cut the gum/varnish, I like a brand of carb cleaner called "Next Dimension", sold at advance auto parts. It works better than most anything else I've used.

There are two independently owned gas stations in my area that sell non-ethanol fuel. You might have to call an oil&gas distributor in your area to find out where to buy it.
 
  #14  
Old 05-01-12, 04:00 AM
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Check for gas info online, a while back I stumbled across a web site that listed all the local gas stations that sold non ethanol gas. I knew where 2 were but that site listed 1 that was closer
 
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Old 05-01-12, 09:48 AM
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I had a McCulloch gas trimmer that I spent more money fixing than I did in purchase price. I finally gave up and went electric. I'd rather pull the extension cord around than pull that &$%@** starter rope 30 times and put my back into spasm. So I feel your pain. Typically a Stihl unit is more reliable than McCulloch, but I have a "black thumb" with all two stroke engines for some reason. And I'm sure it's 90% my fault some how, but I ran out of patience.
 
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Old 05-17-12, 10:26 PM
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Just to update this...

I finally took some time and did the rebuild of the carburetor on my blower. I had put in the new fuel lines a few weeks ago, and nothing was happening when I primed the new bulb. No gas. So I figured it HAD to be the carb. Anyway tonight I pulled it off, and while watching a couple of online videos , I took the whole thing apart, cleaned it, and replaced all the replaceable parts with new ones. Took far longer than I expected it to - the part where you put the little lever back in with the spring...OMG that took me forever!! The videos had NO detail on that, and I could not for the life of me tell how they had been in there in the first place. (Yes, I took pics as I was disassembling, but those teeny pieces fell out as soon as I unscrewed the little screw, and I had no idea how they had fit in there.)

Anyway, I FINALLY got that in there right, and got everything back together. Took it outside, primed it, and pulled the cord. Varrrrrroooomm!!

Success! I rebuilt a carburetor!! Holy crap!
 
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Old 05-18-12, 12:35 AM
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Lol... Great! Glad you got it and thanks for the update! Those carbs can be tricky, but you figured it out.
 
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