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Thread: Mower issues

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    Herndon VA
    Posts
    180

    Mower issues

    Hey guys, I went out to cut the grass for the first time this year. I had my riding mower wrapped up because last year a bunch of mice got in and built a very nice nest. Well it cost be a couple of hundred to replace the entire wiring system and get a tune up. So this year I decided to wrap the mower in plastic. And wouldn't you know it, they moved in again!

    So after cleaning everything up and relocating the family and the mower, I tried to start it up. It has a VERY rough idle. It surges a lot on low idle. The mice only chewed one small section of insulation on the fuel solenoid wire running to the carb. I wrapped the section with tape to try an protect it.

    When I stored it I put in fuel additive based on a 2 gallon mix. I also had it tuned up last fall by my local shop. At that point it was running like a charm. Now it is a sick puppy.

    Any thoughts on what it could be? I was thinking I'd drain the fuel and replace the newly replace fuel filter and see if that does not fix it. As for the wire I will probably splice in a new section.

    It has now earned a new home in the garage!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    RETIRED(!) in Austintown, Ohio
    Posts
    5,322
    Fresh fuel ought to help a lot. Maybe run some carb cleaner through it, too.

    My mower/tractor becomes a snow plow during the winter, so it gets used quite a bit, and I don't have that sort of problems. Now, the little walk-behind mower gets a tune-up every Spring, and so do the rototiller, pressure washer, and chipper shredder. The snow blower will get its tune-up about mid October.

    The stuff that gets stored I try to run dry before storage. Stabil is good stuff, and I use it in everything all year round, but I'd prefer to just start fresh whenever I can.
    Jim D.
    Adapt, Improvise, Overcome!

  3. #3
    It does sound like it's being starved for fuel - but I'll ask this as well - how does it run without the air filter? Critters seem to like clogging them up - just to drive us nuts.
    Good luck,
    Wes

  4. #4
    Its the fuel additive more then likely.I used to use it in my snowmobiles when I stored them for the summer. The problem was it took 3 tanks of gas to wash the stuff out of the tank, until then the thing ran rough. For my old two strokes, it was no big deal but for my new 9 grand, 4 stroke snowmobile, I winced watching the thing idle so roughly.

    Now I go out and start my sled about once a month in the summer months. This helps charge the battery and gets the gas to flow through the injectors and keeps things from gumming up. I recommend you do the same thing with your lawn mower in the winter. Start it up a few times...and toss a few moth balls around it to keep out the mice.

    By the way, you suck...mowing your grass. Its still snowing here.
    I have no intention of traveling from birth to the grave in a manicured and well preserved body; but rather I will skid in sideways, totally beat up, completely worn out, utterly exhausted and jump off my tractor and loudly yell, "Wow, this is what it took to feed a nation!"

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    North West Indiana
    Posts
    6,099
    I second the moth ball idea, although I hate the smell of them, have been told to slice pieces off of a bar of lava soap and they will also stay away. Second do check it without the air cleaner, fresh gas and mow. (after you put a new air cleaner on it!)

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Location
    Tokyo Japan
    Posts
    15,807
    Lots of good advice.

    Have you checked the spark plug?

    Sometimes the fuel stabli stuff can make the engine burn rich, which could cause the spark plug to foul or carbon up. Might be worth it to just replace the plug anyways

    Your plug should have a nice tan or brown color, it should NOT be white, or black.

    This mower, is it a two-smoke?

    If so..........



    This is actually more for tuning the carb on a 2-smoke bike, but it all works similar like.

    Check your air cleaner too, never know what crawled up in there and died

    Cheers!
    The pessimist complains about the wind; the optimist expects it to change; the realist adjusts the sails.
    William Arthur Ward

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    RETIRED(!) in Austintown, Ohio
    Posts
    5,322
    Quote Originally Posted by Jonathan Shively View Post
    ...have been told to slice pieces off of a bar of lava soap and they will also stay away...
    Don't know about Lava, but cut up bars of Irish Spring soap does work to keep deer and other vermin out of flower beds. I buy it cheap, 20 bars at a time, at Sam's Club.
    Jim D.
    Adapt, Improvise, Overcome!

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    Herndon VA
    Posts
    180
    Hey guys thanks for the advice. I'll stop and get some carb cleaner on the way home. Next year this will be cover in moth balls, soap and a few red hawks!

    I might try and drain out some of the gass this weekend and try to get fresher gas in the mower. Worse case is I'll keep adding fresh gas. Right now it is around half a tank.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Location
    Tokyo Japan
    Posts
    15,807
    Mike, on bottom of the carb, there should be a "Float Bowl", they often have a drain on them, drain the float bowl, and you might even get a bit of water out of there, never know, this will also, hopefully, get rid of any loose gunk in the carb that can float around and clog up jets etc.

    What kind of mower is it anyway?

    Good luck!
    The pessimist complains about the wind; the optimist expects it to change; the realist adjusts the sails.
    William Arthur Ward

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    Herndon VA
    Posts
    180
    Stu - thanks for the tip. It is an Aerins zero radius turn with 15hp Kohler engine.

    It runs really smooth when it is using good gas!

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