Push mower popped, banged and now won't start.

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Old 05-13-18, 06:17 PM
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Push mower popped, banged and now won't start.

I have a Troy-bilt Flex which I recently changed the spark plug on. It started fine so I could mow my long overdue lawn.

About 1/4 of the way through, the engine popped and spat out black smoke, lost power and stopped. I checked the fuel and it was low, so I topped it up. It started, but immediately lost power. It did this a couple more times, now won't start.

I'm fairly new to this so not sure what's the best thing to try. I've primed it, put the choke on...but it won't attempt to start.
 
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Old 05-13-18, 07:52 PM
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Black smoke means too much fuel. Is it dripping fuel? Is the spark plug wet or badly sooted? Did you hit a stump or solid object shortly before this happened?
 
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Old 05-14-18, 12:59 PM
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There's no dripping. This was immediately after I changed the spark plug, so the new plug is clean.

I didn't hit a stump, but I was mowing grass longer than I would have liked. I put it at max height and made sure it didn't cement up (checked under it with the safety key out and cleaned up any clumps of wet grass). Got about 1/4 acre done then it gave up.
 
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Old 05-14-18, 06:19 PM
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Does it feel like it's spinning more easily than it used to when you pull the cord?
 
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Old 05-15-18, 07:23 AM
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Feels about the same.

Last night, I decided to try again (time can make a difference, right?) and it started first try. Again, a little black smoke, then some white, then clear exhaust. I stopped it, prepped it for mowing, then it would start. I primed it again and put it into run, not choke. It started. I just kept it running and mowed the lawn.

Should my next step be to do a general service of the machine according to the manual? Cleaning ports etc?

Is there something I should watch for to ensure I don't damage the mower? Something that may be going on that I am not aware of?

Thanks for the help so far!
 
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Old 05-15-18, 12:47 PM
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A new air filter may help. A clogged filter would create a rich mixture.
 
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Old 05-15-18, 10:42 PM
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Yeah, might be time for a filter, it's hard to say what caused it without being there to see and check it over. Could have been a number of things.
 
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Old 09-10-18, 10:13 PM
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Similar thing just happened to me.

I accidentally overflowed the gas about about a month and it was running just fine. Today I tried to start the mower and it was blowing black smoke. I ran it for a little while and then it popped and quit working. Tested to see if it was the air filter by taking it out and it was still black smoke. Any ideas? New carburetor?
 
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Old 09-11-18, 01:26 AM
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What engine is on it? If it is a bowl type carb, it may need cleaning or replacing. If it mounts on top of the tank, it probably just needs the diaphragm replaced.
 
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Old 09-11-18, 06:49 AM
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Similar thing just happened to me.

I looked it up best I could. I believe it's a
  • Reliable Honda GCV160 engine with Auto Choke System
my mower is a Honda lawn mower hrr216k9vkaa
 
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Old 09-11-18, 08:53 AM
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When you check under the mower if you tip it with the carb on the down side fuel andd oil can saturate the air filter and create your problem, if tilting the mower always keep the carb on the up side. Have a good one. Geo
 
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Old 09-11-18, 10:17 AM
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Good advice. But my air filter seemed fine. I even took it out to see if my mower would quit blowing black smoke but it didn't. So I placed it back in, started it up, tried to mow a line in my lawn, then a loud pop happened and my mower quit working. Any ideas? I bought carburetor cleaner and a spark plugs and but I have to wait until it gets delivered.
 
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