Push Mower Starts But Stalls Within Few Seconds

EagleGuy

Well-known member
It will be easier to tell what I haven't done than what I have done. I haven't replaced the governor springs and the exhaust o-ring seal (my descriptions).

Any ideas?
 

JackEd

Well-known member
I have a Craftsman push mower. I cut the grass 2 weeks ago, primed the pump and it fired up right away. Cut my yard in about an a little over an hour. My son went out Thursday to cut, it fired up right away but puttered out around 5 minutes in. It wouldn't restart so I let it sit for 10-15 minutes. Fired right up after the wait but with the same results. I took the cover off to check the carburetor and it appears clean and the mechanism opens and shuts without issue. I also disconnected the hose that goes from my primer into the engine. After I put it all back together it ran for the whole time it took to cut (about an hour) the grass, but had a slight rough idle the whole time.

I ran the fuel out of the tank after the last cut of last year, but the fuel in the gas can was still from the last cut of last year. Can the fuel in the can go bad even if its in a sealed container? Ive never had issues with that ever before.
 

ogealbhain

Well-known member
I have a Craftsman push mower. I cut the grass 2 weeks ago, primed the pump and it fired up right away. Cut my yard in about an a little over an hour. My son went out Thursday to cut, it fired up right away but puttered out around 5 minutes in. It wouldn't restart so I let it sit for 10-15 minutes. Fired right up after the wait but with the same results. I took the cover off to check the carburetor and it appears clean and the mechanism opens and shuts without issue. I also disconnected the hose that goes from my primer into the engine. After I put it all back together it ran for the whole time it took to cut (about an hour) the grass, but had a slight rough idle the whole time.

I ran the fuel out of the tank after the last cut of last year, but the fuel in the gas can was still from the last cut of last year. Can the fuel in the can go bad even if its in a sealed container? Ive never had issues with that ever before.
Don't know about gas. Filter dirty?
 

irish_buffalo

Well-known member
I have a Craftsman push mower. I cut the grass 2 weeks ago, primed the pump and it fired up right away. Cut my yard in about an a little over an hour. My son went out Thursday to cut, it fired up right away but puttered out around 5 minutes in. It wouldn't restart so I let it sit for 10-15 minutes. Fired right up after the wait but with the same results. I took the cover off to check the carburetor and it appears clean and the mechanism opens and shuts without issue. I also disconnected the hose that goes from my primer into the engine. After I put it all back together it ran for the whole time it took to cut (about an hour) the grass, but had a slight rough idle the whole time.

I ran the fuel out of the tank after the last cut of last year, but the fuel in the gas can was still from the last cut of last year. Can the fuel in the can go bad even if its in a sealed container? Ive never had issues with that ever before.
The fuel can go bad but if you already cut it that is probably not the issue.

A couple things to consider before you junk it or take it to the shop.
* Fuel filter (this would be my first guess)
* Air filter (probably not the case but can bog down the engine if it is not getting good air)
* If bad gas was used the carb might need adjusted. Most Craftsman mowers have Briggs & Statton engines.
* Clean the spark plugs
 

cabezadecaballo

Well-known member
I have a Craftsman push mower. I cut the grass 2 weeks ago, primed the pump and it fired up right away. Cut my yard in about an a little over an hour. My son went out Thursday to cut, it fired up right away but puttered out around 5 minutes in. It wouldn't restart so I let it sit for 10-15 minutes. Fired right up after the wait but with the same results. I took the cover off to check the carburetor and it appears clean and the mechanism opens and shuts without issue. I also disconnected the hose that goes from my primer into the engine. After I put it all back together it ran for the whole time it took to cut (about an hour) the grass, but had a slight rough idle the whole time.

I ran the fuel out of the tank after the last cut of last year, but the fuel in the gas can was still from the last cut of last year. Can the fuel in the can go bad even if its in a sealed container? Ive never had issues with that ever before.
Sta-bil is your friend, with alcohol added to gas especially. I would not keep gas more than a month without it.
 

eastisbest

Well-known member
Unheated garage. I've never removed the gas or the oil over the winter, never put an additive in it and never had a problem starting. Two mowers in 20 years. This ain't your daddy's gas.

Briggs and Stratton's are known for sticky chokes. It still boils down to fuel, air and misture. Check to be sure the choke is returning after it warms. It can get stuck and the spring can't return it (presuming there's no problem with the spring). If that's working and the filters and plug are good, maybe a vacumm on the fuel line shutting down the fuel. Check the gas cap to make sure it is clean and air can enter.
 
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eastisbest

Well-known member
Drain the gas go buy some good gasoline less ethanol the better if that don't work go buy a new lawn mower.

If it starts and runs a bit, I don't think the problem is the gas. There's no problem with the air. I'm thinking it's the mixture. After it warms it either isn't getting gas or it isn't getting air.

As for gas, head to the marina or a gas station near a marina if the lawn mower is worth the time. But before throwing out gas:

Check the choke, make sure it's not getting stuck open, hanging up on the block or just dirty. Check the gas cap, make sure air can get through it. As the gas empties, if air cannot get in through the cap it creates a vacuum that shuts off the ability of the gas to flow to the carburator. This will happen in a minute or two.

If it starts, runs, then stops, take the cap off. Run it and see if it continues to run. If it does, problem is the cap. I'm bettin.
 

eastisbest

Well-known member
Pulled the lawnboy push mower out of the garage, still carrying last year's gas. Took a couple primes and pulls, then started right up. Probably ought to change the oil, haven't done that since I bought it four years ago.
 

19AL63

Well-known member
Pulled the lawnboy push mower out of the garage, still carrying last year's gas. Took a couple primes and pulls, then started right up. Probably ought to change the oil, haven't done that since I bought it four years ago.
Year ago I had a Lawnboy push mower and I changed the oil everytime I put gas in the tank. Those old two cycle engines were the best.
 

Thavoice

Well-known member
i have this happen to mine, and it is that air intake thingamajig. My fliter and cover is long gone after tearing it down enough times. But if it gets too much, or too little, air it stalls. I have it just right and not nearly as many issues now.
 

EagleGuy

Well-known member
This is why as my smaller gas stuff meets the end of its useful life I am transitioning to battery powered.
You may think I am crazy, but if you saw how small my lawn has become you may undestand why I just bought a reel mower ($100). I've used it twice and so far so good. There are both positives (no gas, etc.) and negatives (won't cut twigs).

That said, I haven't given up on my gas push mower and have been reading and taking mental (haha) notes for when I give fixing it another go. Thanks to all.
I only got to the post before the other 12,000 Yappi members. ... How many active yappi members are there? Sounds like one for the question forum.
😲 Timing in life is everything. Maybe, active, unique members & total screen names. How many be that? lol
 

Omar

Well-known member
I actually got one of those old reel mowers. It’s a b**ch to mow a big yard with, but not nearly as annoying as having to deal with an electric or gas mower.
 

eastisbest

Well-known member
They say reel mowers are great for the environment. This one is only $77.60
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OldSoulon

Well-known member
Yeah, got a really steep hill in my back yard. It’s nearly impossible to get an electric/gas mower back up to the top and maintain your footing. I can just carry the reel mower and I don’t have to charge it or waste gas on it.
Just put a rope on it and lower and raise it as needed.
 

Omar

Well-known member
Just put a rope on it and lower and raise it as needed.
I thought about getting those straps people where at the gym when they’re doing sled pulls. The reality is, it’s just easier to use the reel mower. I can carry it over my head while I try to get footing going up the hill
 
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