Poulan chain saw won't start

Old 07-30-12, 06:59 PM
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jul 2012
Posts: 7
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
Poulan chain saw won't start

I have a 42 cc poulan that i just can't get to start. It has brand new gas, i've removed the spark plug and it is sparking very well. But if i put the plug back in it just won't fire. If i dump in a shot of gas or ether right in the cylinder, it doesn't even pop.

Its acting like when i stick the plug back in the cylinder, it isn't sparking, because i've pulled the plug out and sometimes its wet, and if i crank it over it'll burn off it i off. Any ideas? I'm maybe thinking something like piston rings? At this point i have the air filter out.

Old 07-30-12, 07:31 PM
cheese's Avatar
Forum Topic Moderator
Join Date: Jul 2001
Location: USA
Posts: 17,893
Received 87 Votes on 81 Posts
Does it have good compression? If the plug is wet, it is flooded. If the original problem is flooding, then adding gas will only make it worse.
Old 07-31-12, 05:06 AM
Group Moderator
Join Date: Mar 2003
Location: NC, USA
Posts: 27,609
Received 1,446 Votes on 1,300 Posts
Is this saw new to you so this is your first time trying to start it? Or, did it run fine last season and this is the first time trying to star it in months?

When a saw won't start with the normal starting procedure I try having the choke off and hold the throttle wide open and give it several good pulls which sometimes helps if it was flooded.
Old 07-31-12, 05:52 AM
chandler's Avatar
Banned. Rule And/Or Policy Violation
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: USA
Posts: 39,964
Received 9 Votes on 8 Posts
I had to change fuel lines in 3 saws this year, due to age. It happens. Of course if you are getting a wet plug, that may not be the case. My 4th saw was a Poulan 3400 Countervibe bow saw. Forget the fuel line replacement and take it to a repair shop. I had it torn down way too much and decided I couldn't change the lines.
Old 08-01-12, 06:15 PM
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jul 2012
Posts: 7
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
well this started when i first broke out the saw this summer from sitting all winter. It did run fine last year. It never fired or anything from the moment i tried this year, maybe its flooding every time i try it. I would think after pulling on it a million times it would clear out. I don't have a compression gauge but if i cover the spark plug hole with my finger, it does push and pull air.
Old 08-01-12, 08:31 PM
hopkinsr2's Avatar
Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: canada
Posts: 1,563
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
If you have compression & spark & it's flooding, I'll bet the ethenol in the fuel has rotted the diagraghams in the carb.. Install a carb kit & you should be fine.. Roger
Old 08-01-12, 08:43 PM
Join Date: Oct 2011
Location: USA
Posts: 431
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
Does the finger method measure 90 Lbs of compression?? Check diaphragms, the needle maybe being held open by hard diaphragm.

Thread Tools
Search this Thread
Ask a Question
Question Title: