There's little more frustrating than to drag out your lawn mower, line trimmer, edger, or leaf blower only to find the junk lawn equipment won't start. While most of the country enjoys a respite from lawn care, here in Florida the plentiful sunshine and subtropical climate make it practically a year-round chore. Though homeowners don't have to mow and trim as often, it's still necessary.

Ways to Troubleshoot Lawn Equipment

Should your trimmer, leaf blower, edger, or lawn mower not start, the cause of the problem might be one thing or a combination of things. You'll have to troubleshoot it by checking each one; and, even then, there's no guarantee it will start. Like all internal combustion engines, these eventually wear-out.

When you’re staring at a yard full of grass that desperately needed cutting two weeks ago, the last thing you want is a lawn mower engine that won’t fire up. Most of the time when a lawn mower, snow blower or any small engine won't start the cause is a problem with the gas or the carburetor. -- Family Handyman

The first things to check are the fuel and oil. If the fuel has been sitting in the container for some months, it might be stale. The mix is also something to look at, so, make-up a fresh mix and try and prime that through the engine. Here are some more troubleshooting tips:

  • Check the spark plug. Uncap the spark plug and remove it from the engine. If it's fouled, you'll likely be able to tell in no time. Other small signs might be present, like bits of corrosion.
  • Check the fuel filter. When the fuel filter no longer performs its function, the engine gets an unhealthy dose of fuel and eventually won't run smoothly, won't stay running, or, won't start at all.
  • Check the air filter. Take the air filter out and examine it. Should it need replacing, buy one and then try to start the machine again. If that doesn't work, it might be the carburetor bowl or jet.
  • Check the carburetor. If you have the know-how, this shouldn't be a big deal. Inspect the carburetor and remove it if you notice anything that's wrong. You might have to blow-out the main jet.
  • Check the fuel pump. Another item to check is the fuel pump. When this stops functioning, it doesn't push fuel through the engine when gravity isn't acting to supply the oil and gas mixture to the engine.

How to Junk Lawn Equipment

If none of the above suggestions gets the equipment running, you might consider taking it to a small engine repair shop. Keep in mind, it will probably be a lot more practical to buy a replacement that's new rather than getting it fixed. Another suggestion is to call a junk removal service that will pick it up and take it away. That will keep you from having to pay hefty disposal fees at the local facility.

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