Posts Tagged ‘Lawn Mowers’

Mower Oddities

29 May 2011

We have about an acre and a third, and hand mow the lawn parts of it. I tend to buy cheap mowers, they last 3-5 years, and then replace them. In the meantime, they take some maintenance to keep running. Our mower, a Lawn Boy 22″ that we bought from Wal-Mart (this is the second one we have bought), is about four years old. It’s showing some wear, especially where the mower is bolted to the body of the mower.

This year I had to clean the fuel “filter” (really, a fine mesh screen where the fuel intake is into the gas tank) and the air filter. The mower has not started for a couple weeks, and today was the first day I went to take a close look at it. Three things, right? Fuel, air, spark.

First thing, I took off the spark plug wire; I had good spark. So far, so good.

Next, I took off the air filter assembly. The primer was pushing gas into the carb. So fuel was probably OK. I tried to start it, it started! So I figured it was the air filter. I took the filter out, screwed the assembly back on, and it started up just fine.

Then I noticed… I had not put the spark plug wire back on the plug, it was just sort of hanging close to the end of the plug. Shut the mower off, put the wire back on the plug, and… wouldn’t start. What the heck?

I pulled the plug wire back off and let it dangle, it was close to the end of the plug again, and the mower started just fine. It was running great! I took a pair of insulated pliers and put the wire back on the plug. The mower kept running, but seemed to start running a little rougher. But it kept running. Weird.

I took the air filter assembly off again, reinstalled the air filter, and put the whole thing back on again. The mower kept running.

Well, hmmm….. I don’t understand this. I told Ian to start mowing and keep mowing until it was out of gas!

So this is strange behavior. I’m going to do a little thinking and a little research later and try to figure out how this might be.