Small Engine Repair
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Lawn Mower Maintenance
Lawnmower Fuel Supply Problem
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Troubleshooting A Fuel Supply Problem

Remove the air cleaner and inspect the choke plate mounted on a shaft at the opening of the carburetor's throat . Check that the choke plate closes easily and completely. A choke that does not move freely or close properly can cause difficulties in starting.

Spray a small amount of carburetor cleaner on the shaft of a sluggish choke and into the venturi to loosen grit. Debris in the carburetor often causes performance problems.

Open the fuel valve (if equipped), located at the base of the fuel tank where the fuel line is attached. Remove the line and check for blockage . Fuel will not reach the carburetor if the fuel valve is closed.

If the engine is equipped with a fuel pump, make sure it operates properly.

Remove and inspect the spark plug. A wet plug may indicate over-choking, water in the fuel, or an excessively rich fuel mixture. A dry plug may indicate a plugged fuel filter, leaking mounting gaskets on either end of the carburetor, or a stuck or clogged carburetor inlet needle.

Pour a teaspoon of fuel into the spark plug hole . Screw the spark plug back in and start the engine. If it fires only a few times and then quits, assume a dry plug condition and consider the causes of a dry plug, listed in Step 5.
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How to fix a gas lawnmower that starts then dies