Lawn Mower Stalls When Tilted – What To Do?
When mowing your lawn using a mower, you could run into the problem where the mower won’t start after it has been tilted. When users tilt lawn mowers to replace blades or do some other maintenance, it is normal for the mowers to cease working. If you are facing this problem, there is no need to panic as we have consulted with experts for solutions, and here is what they have to say.
Check if your lawnmower suddenly stops working when you’re trying to tilt it. If the carburetor runs low on fuel or air, you’ll have to do some cleaning. If you notice that the mower only stalls when the gas tank is tilted, you may need to move or replace the gas line in the tank.
Keep reading to learn more about other problems that might make your mower not work when tilted and how you can stop it from stalling.
Why Does My Lawn Mower Stall When Tilted?
Once in a while, a lawnmower will start and run for a short period and then stop when tilted. For your benefit, you need to understand the potential sources of the problem and the alternative solutions to try. Here are some of the causes.
Air Filter Problem
The carburetor’s breather tube has oil in it. Oil can soak into the air filter and cause the lawnmower to not start after tilting or running full of fuel. Because of this, the lawnmower may be emitting black smoke.
Because you can’t tilt the lawnmower, the air filter is facing downwards instead of upright. When tilting the mower, ensure the air filter always faces upward. Because the air filter has become saturated with water, there is nowhere for the air to enter; hence the mower will not start. When this happens, you can change the filter in the mower.
Malfunctioning Fuel Cap
The lawn mower’s fuel tank cover is called a fuel cap. Air cannot enter the gasoline tank if it is not properly vented. For the tank to drain properly, the gap it leaves must be filled with air.
Vacuums are created when the gas stops flowing because no air can fill them. To determine if the gasoline cap is working properly, fill the gas tank and reinstall the cap. Then you will need to prepare a bucket and unhook the fuel line from the fuel tank.
Immediately after the gasoline line is disconnected, the gas will begin to flow into the bucket. Not venting the fuel cap will cause the gas to slow down or stop before emptying the tank.
When you take off the cap, you should check the gas level inside, and you should also observe whether or not extra gas comes out when you do this. Remove the old fuel cap and replace it with a new one.
For those of you who have a lawn, you’re undoubtedly familiar with the use of a lawnmower. It is simple to operate and requires little upkeep. But even with regular maintenance, one issue many people run across is figuring out how to fix it when the lawn mower doesn’t start after it has been tilted.
Carburetor problems are the most typical reason a lawn mower fails to start. Fuel leaking from the carburetor could cause engine and air filter problems.
The lawn mower would not start when it was tilted because it was flooded. It is also possible that something has become lodged in the lawn mower’s carburetor, which keeps it from starting after its use.
At this time, the exhaust from the lawnmower is beginning to reach quite high temperatures. The noise that the lawnmower makes will then be significantly more unpleasant. You can resolve this issue by allowing the carburetor to dry out on its own or replacing it.
Faulty Spark Plug
Spark plugs are essential in all engines. There is no combustion in the engine if the spark plug isn’t operating, and that’s what keeps it running. Remove the spark plug wire to inspect the spark plugs.
Remove the spark plug by unscrewing it using a spark plug tool. Simply by looking, you can tell if the spark plug has been damaged. If the porcelain insulator or electrode is broken or damaged, a replacement spark plug is necessary.
After ensuring the spark plug is undamaged, you can retest its operation by reattaching the spark plug wire and starting the mower. A strong blue spark should appear if the spark plug is functioning properly. Replace it if necessary.
How Do I Stop My Lawnmower From Stalling?
It would be best if you inspected your lawnmower every year to keep it running smoothly and extend its lifespan. Your lawn mower’s oil, spark plugs, and air filter should be changed periodically.
It is best to consult your owner’s manual for exact instructions for your model. Make sure you don’t cut corners on these maintenance activities to keep your mower running smoothly and free of issues.
Can a Bad Battery Case a Lawn Mower to Stall?
Yes, it can. Battery-powered wireless electric lawn mowers require a power source to recharge their lithium batteries. If your battery is completely dead, you’ll need to plug it in and let it recharge for two to three hours before using it again. Then, you’ll be able to mow your lawn.
You can get a new one for those whose lithium battery has failed and can no longer be charged in their lawnmower. A few electric lawnmower manufacturers sell battery replacements on their websites. Check out this MMG Lithium ion sealed battery on Amazon.
Why Does My Lawn Tractor Stall When Mowing Uphill?
There are many reasons your lawnmower could stall while mowing uphill, but the most common is that it doesn’t have enough power to get the job done.
Another possible reason for this to happen is due to engine problems. Also, old or tainted fuel can build up in the engine of a lawn mower if it isn’t used for an extended length of time or if gas isn’t added regularly.
Should a Lawn Mower Fuel Filter be Full?
It is important to ensure that the fuel filter on your lawnmower is full to stop air from getting into the combustion chamber through the fuel line.
If air is allowed to pass through the fuel filter, the lawnmower’s engine will erroneously burn the fuel, resulting in overheating and smoke. You will need to bleed the line to remove surplus air from the fuel filter.
Why is My Riding Mower Losing Power?
Clogged air filters, filthy spark plugs, clogged carburetors, dull blades, and worn-out or tainted gas are the most typical reasons for the power loss of riding lawn mowers. Other potential causes include unclean gas and blocked fuel filters.
Is It Okay to Hose Down a Lawn Mower?
After each usage, metal parts can be eaten by decomposing grass if not cleaned thoroughly. Using a hose to clean up your lawnmower is okay, but you should never use a pressure washer or saturate the engine with water.
Why Does My Lawn Mower Backfire While Running?
If the gas in the lawn mower combustion chamber backfires, you’ll hear a loud explosion since the gas was ignited in a place where it wasn’t supposed to be. Starting, running, or shutting off the lawnmower all have the potential to result in this.
An incorrectly adjusted carburetor or a sheared flywheel key can cause a lawnmower engine to backfire. Other typical causes include abruptly shutting down the mower’s engine or using the wrong type of gasoline.
Will The Riding Mower Run Without Battery?
Yes, it will. The engine of riding lawnmowers is started with a battery contained within the mower. If your battery dies, you’ll need to jumpstart your engine to get your mower started again.
In addition, there must be sufficient charge in the battery for it to be able to deliver a strong spark to the spark plug. If it does not, the engine will either operate roughly or not. If your battery is old and seems to have died fast, it is probably advisable to replace it rather than try to revive it.
You should make an effort to recharge your battery before you decide to replace it, even if doing so is likely to take some time. If you need to mow your lawn immediately and can’t wait for the battery on your lawnmower to charge, you might want to try jumpstarting your lawnmower.
To Wrap Up
The most important thing to remember while inspecting your lawn mower is to be thorough. Keep an eye out for any malfunction that can be readily fixed. A well-maintained lawn mower has a far longer lifespan and is less likely to develop problems in the future if you give it regular attention and maintenance.
For more on garden equipment, check out these interesting posts:
Lawn Mower Starts Then Dies? Try These Easy Fixes
A lawn mower which starts up then quickly dies is quite a common problem.
So don’t worry – you’re not alone!
Many others face this problem, and have found themselves on Google with their mower sitting out in the yard over the long grass.
In this article, we cover all of the main causes for this issue. The quick answer is that
If your lawn mower starts then dies, it’s gas may be bad, not enough oil, dirty carburetor, or bad spark plugs. If it’s an electric mower starting and dying, it may need more charge, be overheating, or have an electrical fault.
The answer depends on the type of mower and what specifically is happening. Since there’s both gas and electric mowers which can start and die, there’s a good amount of detail to go into.
If you want to get this problem solved, then read on and let’s breathe some life back into your lawn mower.
What Kind of Mower Do You Have?
Yes, it’s important to know what kind of mower you have to identify possible reasons why your lawn mower is starting and then quickly dying. Specifically, do you have a gas-powered or electric-powered mower? For example, if you have an electric mower, you don’t have to worry about bad gas being the problem.
Since gas mowers are the most common, let’s look at why your lawn mower may be cutting out on you.
Why Your Gas Mower Starts Then Dies
If your gas mower is starting and then shutting down, one thing you can say for sure is that a power cord isn’t the problem. No, when it comes to a gas-powered engine, you’re going to look at several things not seen on an electric-powered mower.
A key concern and common culprit with a gas lawn mower is how long it’s been stored and how old the gas within it is.
The reason this is a concern is the longer gas sits in a mower, and if the mower goes through a range of temperature changes in the surrounding environment, things like sludge and condensation can build up in the gas. The result of this can be poor to incomplete combustion.
Poor or incomplete combustion ends up with a mower that will die quicker than it runs.
To fix this, you can try adding new fuel, fuel stabilizer, or siphon the gas out and refill with a whole fresh tank.
Continuing with the theme of incomplete combustion, if the gasoline is good or new, then the next avenue to inspect is your mower’s carburetor.
If you’re wondering what the carburetor does or why it’s important, let’s retreat back to that whole incomplete combustion topic. There are two important requirements for a gasoline engine to run: gas and air.
You’ve already addressed the gasoline. Now you need to check the carburetor to ensure enough air is getting mixed with the fuel prior to combustion.
If the carburetor is the issue, then you’ll likely just need to do a good clean-out. Although there are several ways to do this, it’s recommended to follow your manufacturer’s guidance for your specific mower. That being said, cleaning a carburetor usually always involves pressurized air and a cleaner that gets gunk out.
Bad Spark Plugs
Yes, more talk about issues with combustion. Already addressed the gas and the gas/air mixture needed for combustion. Now let’s get to the actual possible problem with making that tiny explosion within the engine that is converted into power (or makes the mower work).
In this case, you may have a bad spark plug. If you don’t know what a spark plug does, it basically provides the spark that allows for the combustion of the gas/air mixture. It creates the BANG!
Your Electric Mower is Overheating
This one you might not consider your mower is overheating right off the bat. After all, you were barely able to run it. How can overheating be the reason it’s shutting down.
Well, in this case you need to take into account the climate you may be dealing with and where you store your mower. If you live in a place that gets hot and humid, your mower is probably more than hot before putting it to work.
If you live in such an area and you store your electric mower in a place that gets hotter than the air outside, your mower might already be in an overheating situation before you run it for long.
In either or both cases, try to mow in the morning or late afternoon when it’s somewhat cooler. And let your mower at least acclimatize to the outside air for a while after pulling it out of the garage or shed. Letting it sit in a nice breeze can do wonders.
Now, if your electric mower does run for a while and then overheats and shuts down, you may have clogged vents. Inspect them and clean them out if they’re clogged up or obstructed with lawn debris. Clogged vents are a good way to see your motor overheat, which will almost always lead to a shutdown.
Your Mowing Height is Too Low
The good thing here is a power problem or a motor problem. You’ve simply got the mower height set too low and you’re essentially tasking your mower with more volume than it can handle. As a result, the mower shuts down similar to a gas engine stalling out.
The solution is as simple as raising your mowing height and not overloading the motor.
Grass and Debris is Collecting Under Your Mower
A quick visual inspection should let you know if this is an issue within a few seconds.
Take a look under the mower (after you secure your power cord or battery). Are there large chunks of matted clippings or dirt or both? Any branches that could be preventing your blades from rotating efficiently or rotating at all?
If the answer is yes, clean out whatever’s preventing normal blade rotation and get back to work.
Here, you’re just going to have to do a good visual inspection of your electrical cabling, checking for damage, cuts, and loose connections. If you have a corded mower, inspect your power cord as well.
Lastly, check your breakers on your mower if you have any and reset them if they’ve tripped.
Your Motor May Be Failing
This is the worst case scenario but shouldn’t be considered until the other tips above have been exhausted. If none of those correct your mowing issue, then it may be time to call a service center and consider the possibility of having to repair or replace the motor.
Lawn mowers should run when they’re expected to. But like a lot of technology, it doesn’t always happen the way you want every time. That being said, the causes of an immature mower shutdown are often common and easily correctable.
The main thing is to know your mower and what your manufacturer recommends as far as troubleshooting for your design and to not jump to the worst case scenario without exhausting those recommendations.
I’ve been helping homeowners with appliance repair since 2016. Starting out as an enthusiastic amateur, I’ve since worked with many Appliance, HVAC, and DIY experts over the last 7 years. My mission is to help your fix your appliances and systems. saving you money and lowering your energy bills. Visit my author page to learn more! Read more
Hi there! My name’s Craig, and I started Appliance Analysts back in 2017.
My mission is to help our readers solve appliance-related issues without paying through the nose for contractors or a whole new model. I’m joining up with experts from across the HVAC, Appliance Repair, DIY industries to share free expert advice that will save you time, stress, and money.
Lawn Mower Starts Then Dies – Troubleshooting
Lawn mowers can be hard to troubleshoot. If your mower is starting and then stopping, what should you do?
We’ve all been there. One day as you are pulling your lawn mower out of the shed to cut your lawn to the proper height, the engine suddenly stops working. When your mower dies on you like this, it’s not only a nuisance, it ruins your entire weekend plans.
What could cause your machine to behave in this manner?
There are four possible culprits who could be robbing your lawn of its mowing session. And this article will go over all four of them. We’ll go over each potential issue and what causes it, as well as how to fix it so you can get back to work.
Obviously, your lawn mower won’t run without gasoline. But, for the sake of argument, suppose you forgot to drain the gasoline before storing the lawn mower for the winter. Or perhaps you had to evacuate due to a hurricane (as I recently did) and were gone for an extended period of time.
That gasoline, however, evaporates over time and loses not only its potency but also forms a residue that can accumulate on the inside of the tank. This residue has the potential to clog the working parts of your lawn mower.
5 minute fix for a lawn mower that starts then stalls
These clogs restrict the gas flow through the machine, causing it to start and die or not start at all.
How to Fix the Problem
You’ll need to do one of two things depending on your fuel level. If the tank is less than half full, try adding some fresh gasoline to dilute the impurities and free up the gas flow.
If your tank is more than half full, you must drain the old gas and refill it with new gasoline.
Whatever option you choose, you’ll need to mix a fuel stabilizer into the gasoline. For up to two years, a fuel stabilizer prevents the residue that caused the clogging in your lawn mower’s engine from accumulating. The stabilizers cost between 10 and 15 per bottle and are well worth the investment in order to keep your mower running.
An Issue With the Spark Plugs
Spark plugs are the components that ignite the air/fuel mixture in your lawn mower’s engine and start it up. There is no combustion without the spark. Your lawn mower will not move without combustion.
There are a few issues that can arise with spark plugs. They may be filthy, defective, or simply worn out. Whatever the case may be, you must replace the spark plugs or your lawn mower will become a lawn ornament, which you did not intend.
Worn Out Spark Plugs
If you’ve had your spark plugs for more than two years without changing them, they’ve probably just worn out on you.
The plugs should be easy to find, particularly on a walk-behind mower. A spark plug cable should be located near the front of your lawn mower. To remove the spark plug, you’ll need a wrench or socket wrench that fits the spark plug.
After you’ve removed it, simply replace the spark plug and reconnect the cable. If the problem was worn-out spark plugs, the engine should start right up.
Dirty or Defective Spark Plugs
Engines powered by gasoline are not the cleanest of machines. Over time, the various parts and pieces collect all kinds of gunk, residue, and buildup. Your spark plugs are no exception. So, if you remove your spark plugs and discover that they are dirty but not filthy, cleaning them with the appropriate cleaner and a wire brush may save you from having to buy new ones.
Simply take a wire brush and some WD-40 and get to work. However, if your plugs are extremely dirty or have a dark carbon residue buildup, it’s probably best to just buy a new spark plug.
If you need to replace the spark plugs, you should also change the oil, oil filter, and air filter while you’re at it. The entire package should cost no more than 30. It will also help to extend the life of your lawn mower.
Clogged Carburetor Bowl or Dirty Carburetor
When your lawn mower starts then dies, there is a good chance that a faulty carburetor is involved in some way. And, like the spark plugs, the carburetor is an important component of your lawn mower engine. It’s in charge of combining just the right amount of oxygen with the fuel in the gas tank to produce just enough combustion to power the engine while not blowing your lawn mower 50 feet into the sky.
This process can be hampered if your carburetor is clogged or dirty. And, as you are aware, without combustion, your lawn mower is nothing more than a lawn ornament.
How to Fix the Problem
Because the carburetor is one of those internal parts that is critical to the engine’s performance, you will need to clean it. To complete the task, I recommend using Gumout Small Engine Carb Cleaner. It has the power of an aerosol spray and a straw attachment for directing the spray into smaller areas.
Begin by removing the carburetor bowl from the engine by unscrewing it. Once you’ve removed it, clean it thoroughly with your preferred product. Make sure to clean the screw as well as the hole where the screw goes. This is where the directional straw comes in handy for these smaller areas.
When reattaching the carburetor bowl to the engine, be careful not to overtighten the screw and strip it. You may end up jeopardizing the seal.
Another useful tip is to spray your cleaner into the air intake hole of the engine. When you start the engine, the intake will suck the cleaner into the engine and clean up any residue that has accumulated in the intake. On most lawn mowers, the intake is located behind the air filters.
Too Much Oil in the Oil Reservoir
Too much oil in an engine is analogous to too much water in a human. It may appear to be a good idea at first, but too much oil in an engine or too much water in a human can cause the entire machine to fail.
When there is too much oil in the engine, the telltale sign is white smoke emitting from the exhaust.
How to Fix the Problem
Too much oil in the tank causes engine stalls and is a fairly simple fix. Simply take an oil dipstick and measure the engine oil level to determine how much to drain. The excess oil should then be sucked out. While siphoning, keep checking the oil level with the dipstick to see when it reaches the proper level. Allow the oil to settle for a few moments before attempting to start the engine.
You’re in good shape if you’re no longer seeing plumes of white smoke and the engine doesn’t stall. Go ahead and cut the grass.
Seek Professional Help
Hopefully, your issue falls into one of these four categories, which you can resolve on your own. If none of these work, you may need to seek the assistance of a professional small engine mechanic. Because things like a clogged fuel line, a faulty choke, or a worn-out carburetor may require replacement. And these are best examined by a professional.
Jeffrey Douglas own a landscaping company and has been in the business for over 20 years. He loves all things related to lawns or gardens and believes that proper maintenance is the key to preventing problems in the first place.
Lawn Mower Won’t Stay Running | Try This
If your lawnmower won’t stay running, don’t stress — there’s likely a simple at-home solution.
This article covers common causes for why a lawn mower won’t continue to run, quick fixes, and when to contact a professional.
Lawn Mower Won’t Stay Running?
Does your lawnmower start only to sputter and fail? It might be stalling for one of the following reasons:
- Air filter that is clogged
- Old fuel in the tank
- Dirty carburetor
- Faulty or unclean spark plug
New Lawn Tractor Dies When Releasing Brake / Clutch Pedal. Easy Fix! #shorts
Luckily, you can often troubleshoot these issues from the comfort of your own yard.
How to Keep Your Lawn Mower Running
Follow the steps below to find the root cause of your sputtering lawnmower.
Replace Air Filter
Dirty air filters are common culprits of stalling lawnmowers. Filters clogged with dirt and debris restrict airflow to the engine. Without a proper air-to-fuel ratio, the engine cannot run.
Fortunately, air filter replacement is a painless task:
- Locate the filter. Most filters sit atop or beside the engine in a black casing.
- Unscrew and open the filter casing. Remove the filter and wipe dirt from the housing.
- Slide in the new filter and resecure the cover.
If your lawnmower still doesn’t stay on, contemplate when you last used it. It might require fresh fuel!
Drain and Refill Fuel
We’ve all neglected our lawn — especially when snow covers the ground. Unfortunately, winter condensation pollutes fuel sitting in your unused mower. Add a fuel stabilizer before storing the machine to prevent issues.
If your mower sits without a fuel stabilizer, the gas evaporates into a sticky residue. Once you run the lawnmower, gummy debris clogs important components such as the carburetor.
Simply adding fresh fuel doesn’t fix the problem. Instead, empty or siphon out all the gas, then replace the fuel filter. Once that’s done, fill the tank with fresh fuel. The carburetor will require your attention next.
Clean the Carburetor
A dirty carburetor is the most common reason a lawn mower won’t continue running. Carburetors regulate the air and fuel mixture that creates internal combustion and powers the engine.
If the component is dirty, your lawnmower will display the following symptoms:
- Struggles to start
- Spits out black smoke
- Consumes more fuel than usual
- Runs rugged
Luckily, cleaning the carburetor can be done in eight simple steps.
- Locate the element by unscrewing the engine casing and removing the air filter. Depending on the model of your mower, it will sit behind or beneath the filter. Once you remove the filter, you’ll find the carburetor atop or beside the engine.
- Now that the carburetor is accessible, unbolt it from the engine. Place a rag or cup under the component because it will leak fuel.
- Remove the bowl (bottom of the carburetor) by unscrewing the bolt and holding it in place. The bowl holds fuel, so reposition your rag or jar beneath it.
- Once disassembled, evaluate the carburetor’s bolt. Notice it has a jet and small holes that act as air intake valves. Together, they deliver fuel to the throttle, so it’s crucial they’re unobstructed.
- Cover the bolt with cleaner, then clear the intake valves with a small wire.
- Remove the rubber ring sitting between the bowl and the carburetor body. Detach the float by removing the small pin holding it in place. You might need pliers to pull out the pin.
- Now that you dismantled the element, spray it with your cleaner. Clean all the holes with your small wire.
- Reassemble your mower and test its operation.
If you thoroughly cleaned the carburetor but your mower still stalls, inspect the spark plug.
Clean or Change the Spark Plug
Spark plugs ignite the air and fuel mixture that combusts and energizes the engine. If your mower’s spark plugs are dirty or faulty, the engine will fail.
Common signs include engine misfiring, difficulty starting, and increased gas consumption. First, you’ll need to determine if the component requires cleaning or replacement.
How to Diagnose a Bad Spark Plug
- Locate and disconnect the spark plug lead. It usually is a black cable plugged into the front of the lawnmower.
- Once disconnected, wipe away any debris surrounding the plug.
- Remove the spark plug with a spark plug socket. Evaluate the plug for stubborn residue, burnt electrodes, a significant gap, or fractured ceramic. These signs equal replacement.
How to Replace a Spark Plug
- Determine the type of spark plug you need. The model number will be in your owner’s manual or on the plug’s ceramic.
- Once you find a new plug, adjust its gap with a spark plug gauge. Slide the gauge between the electrodes until it’s snug. If necessary, adjust the gap with the small hole at the top of your gauge. Simply pull the curved electrode down or up.
- Position the element in your mower. Turn it clockwise with your hand until the threads catch. Finish tightening the plug with a socket wrench. Avoid over-tightening, as the element is fragile.
- Reconnect the spark plug lead and test its performance.
Things to Consider
Keep these safety tips in mind when completing the above repairs.
- Turn off the engine and unplug the spark plug. Without a spark plug, the mower has no chance of starting.
- Don’t work near flammable items because gas and oil might leak during troubleshooting.
- Don’t work in confined spaces (i.e., closed garage or shed). Fuel-operated machinery emits harmful fumes.
Frequently Asked Questions
Can You Clean a Carburetor Without Removing It?
The short answer is yes. However, leaving the carburetor on the engine won’t thoroughly clear restrictions. Some sources recommend turning the engine on as you spray carb cleaner through the element. This tactic is dangerous and does not guarantee cleanliness.
Checking the carburetor for blockages requires disassembling it. Cleaning the carburetor without removing it is a partial clean and best after every use. Still, a thorough clean is necessary to adequately maintain the machine.
Why Does My Mower Die When it Gets Hot?
Vapor lock is the most common cause of an overheated lawnmower. Vapor lock is when hot fuel gets trapped in the tank. Instead of entering the carburetor, fuel evaporates.
Without fuel, the carburetor cannot facilitate internal combustion, so the engine stops. A broken or dirty gas tank cap is usually the cause of vapor lock.
When to Call a Pro
If the above suggestions don’t keep your mower running, consider calling the pros. Your machine might have a damaged element that is difficult to identify and restore alone.
Remember that working on fuel-operated machinery is extremely dangerous. Contact a professional if you are not comfortable or lack mechanical aptitude. A trained technician will keep you and your lawnmower in good shape.
You can even set up regular maintenance with a professional. They will complete the following for you as frequently as your model requires:
- Oil change
- Air and fuel filter replacement
- Spark plug installation
- Belt inspections
- Blade sharpens or swaps
How to Fix a Lawn Mower That Won’t Continue Running
If your lawnmower won’t stay operating, check your air filter, fuel quality, carburetor, and spark plug.
If you addressed these issues with no results, we suggest leaving it to the pros. A trained eye will save you time and prevent further damage.