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Craftsman mower won't start


jhansman's Avatar
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Join Date: Aug 2012
Posts: 35
CAL

04-23-17, 12:30 PM   #1  
Craftsman mower won't start

So, my trusty Craftsman mower (with the typical Briggs & Stratton engine) has been sitting in storage for some time (months) because the pull rope broke, and rather than fix it then, I held off til yesterday. With the help of good YT video, I replaced the rope just fine. Then I pulled the NGK spark plug, and it looked pretty burned, so I just replaced it with a new one (after cross checking the part # with Champion). Gapped it, put it in, made sure I had good contact with the plug connector, pumped the priming belt a few times, and gave her a pull. Nothing, not even a cough. Tried that few more times, each time priming a bit, so as not to flood, but no love.

So, not knowing what else to try, I took some fine emery cloth to the old plug, gapped it, put it in and reconnected it, primed the engine, and on the first pull, the engine fired up. Hooray! I was in my carport doing all this, so I shut the mower down off to go get work clothes on and prep a few other things. Just for the heck of it, I thought I should be sure the mower would start before taking into the yard. Yes, it would and will not start now. So, I am stumped. Any engine experts out there who can give me a clue as to why it fired up once, but now won't start? I currently have the plug out so the cylinder can dry out in case I flooded it the second time round. Other than that, I have no idea what to try. Any help is much appreciated.

 
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PJmax's Avatar
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NJ

04-23-17, 12:56 PM   #2  
While the plug is out.... lean it against the engine block and see if you get a spark when you pull the rope. Be sure the throttle is not in the STOP position.

If no spark... start checking where the little black wire connects to the throttle area. There may be a problem with the kill/stop switch.

If not.... I'd suspect a points issue...., if applicable.


~ Pete ~

 
jhansman's Avatar
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04-23-17, 04:36 PM   #3  
Ah, didn't think of that, just assumed the plug was getting power. This mower uses a spring-loaded bar you have to hold down while starting and mowing, so no kill switch. Once you grab that bar and pull it back to the main push handle, you're good to go, but I will check for spark as you suggest. I really don't want to pay to have it repaired, as our front yard has gone to weeds, and I just need to get them down, where they dry to a lovely yellow and are covered with oak leaves from a massive tree in the corner of the yard. This mower will likely not get used again until next spring, for the same reason, so I just need it to run once.

Thanks again.

 
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