Flooded Lawn Mower
You’ve got a flooded lawn mower and need to fix it. We know how frustrating that can be, so we created this article to help you out. It’s full of tips and tricks for fixing your machine when it won’t start or is flooding.
Flooded Lawn Mower Problems It’s the weekend and the day your planning to mow your lawn has finally arrived.
You have a good start.
And after an hour of mowing, you turned off the engine, had a drink of cold water and rested for a while.
But when you get back to your machine, the engine won’t start.
You pulled the cord repeatedly and suddenly you smell the scent of fresh gasoline.
Well, my friend, you now have a flooded lawn mower on your your hands.
What happens if your lawn mower is flooded.
Because the mixture of air and gas inside the carburetor do not mix up in proper proportion.
When this happens, no complete combustion will occur inside the combustion chamber.
So the result of not starting either comes from the lack of oxygen or the oversupply of gas in the carburetor.
Either way, the excess of gasoline in your carburetor is what causes the flooding.
Also, since part of the problem of flooding is the lack of air entering the carburetor, the one thing that comes to mind is a problem with the air filter.
However, we will get into this because there are actually a number of reasons why flooding on lawn mower happens.
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Causes of Lawn Mower Flooding and How To Fix Them
Overusing of choke.
You left the “choke” fully engaged while pulling the cord many times when starting the engine and the ignition chamber becomes flooded with gas.
Some manufacturers recommend that leaving the machine for 15 minutes on ground level will let the accumulated gas dissipate and drain from the carburetor and from the ignition chamber.
But if you don’t want to wait that long, you can remove the air filter so that there is the direct passage of air to the carburetor which will help in evaporating the trapped gas.
Removing the spark plug
Will also help in ventilating the combustion chamber then recap the spark plug again after 5 minutes.
While the air filter is removed, start the mower again with choke off.
If it starts, turn it off and put back the air filter then restart.
Stored the lawn mower with a tank full of gas.
An engine full of gas but got stored in the garage for a long time could cause the gas to seep into the carburetor and cause a flooded lawn mower.
Drain out the old fuel and remove the spark plug to see if the cylinder is also flooded with gas.
Keep the gas tank open and let all the remaining gas in the tank and spark plug cylinder disperse.This will take around 15 to 20 minutes.
Put a good amount of gasoline and screw the spark plug back.
Remove also the air filter.
If this is dirty, clean or better yet replace it.
Squirt a little bit of starting fluid on the air intake port.
Start the engine while the choke is in off position.
Once the engine starts, the excess fuel in the carburetor can easily burn out and you may see white smoke billowing for few seconds.
When smoke is gone, turn off the machine and put back the air filter.
Clogged air filter.
If the air filter is clogged, it won’t produce the right amount of air needed for the right air-fuel mixture.
So while the gas is supplied in the carburetor, the flow of air is insufficient thus no successful combustion can occur inside the combustion chamber and flooding happens.
Remove the air filter and clean it if it’s dirty or replace this if necessary. Let the machine settle for about 15 minutes and while waiting, check the spark plug.
If there’s gasoline in the spark plug seat, wipe this off and let the rest disperse.
After 15 minutes, recap the spark plug and start the engine without the air filter.
Put back the air filter after a few minutes of engine running.
Defective spark plug.
If your spark plug has a worn out electrode, there could be spark issues during starting which allows the fuel mixture to fill up the piston chambers and then go back to the carburetor.
This is one of the reasons for a flooded lawn mower.
Change the spark plug once your motor mower starts misfiring. Even if you clean it, sometimes it won’t make much of a difference because its worn out.
Keep a spare spark plug in your garage you never know when you might need it.
When your carburetor is blocked due to dirt or sludge, this traps the gas that is inside the bowl of the carburetor.
And as the gas gets pumped in, more gas gets flooded inside.
The only thing to fix this is to disassemble the carburetor and clean its jets, bowl and inlet valve with carburetor cleaner or you can use gas with a small paintbrush.
How To Restart lawn Mower When flooded
If you want the quickest way on how to restart lawn mower when flooded, you have to do some emergency measures and most of the time these steps would work.
All you need is a spark plug wrench, dry cloth, screw driver, and starter fluid. So here’s what you should do –
Quick Method Of Unflooding A Lawn Mower
1. Pull out the spark plug cap and using your spark plug wrench, unscrew the plug.
2. Check the electrode if it’s wet with gas dry it with your cloth.
3. Spray the bottom electrode spark plug terminal with alcohol-based starter fluid.
4. Without the spark plug, pull the starter cord about five times to force air into the carburetor to dissipate the accumulated gasoline.
5. Put back the spark plug, turn the choke to “off” and pull up the cord again to start. Normally, the engine will sputter.
Crank the engine more until the engine starts.
6. If the engine doesn’t start, turn the choke on and crank again.
Once the engine starts, quickly switch off the choke, turn off the engine and start the engine once more.
7. Crank the engine and if there is no response, take off the air filter completely and crank with a quick but complete stroke.
8. If the engine starts and sputters, this means the air filter is dirty or worn out and must be replaced with a new one.
Important Tips to Remember
The best tips we can give you to avoid a flooded lawn mower is by taking out the spark plug and air filter and replace them to make sure they don’t fail.
An quality air filter brand could protect your carburetor air intake more than the cheap brands saving you more money from future repairs.
Starting fluid can also be of great help especially during winter or if you have trouble starting your lawn mower.
It is used generally for internal combustion engines and sprayed into the carburetor or near the air filter or on the spark plug
Because it contains highly volatile liquid it can also aid in disintegrating dirt that accumulates on parts where combustion happens.
However, this is also highly flammable so be aware of your surroundings when you use it.