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Question DetailsAsked on 4/27/2013

i purchased a troy built lawn mower model 550ex last summner after setting inthe garage for the winter it won't start

it appear that no fuel is going to the carb. if i spray starter fluid or put gas in the carb it will start and shut down

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3 Answers


If you did not fill it with gas with fuel stabilizer at winter's start, then one of the following may have happened:

1) Sludge, varnish, or water settled to the bottom of the tank and plugged the fuel inlet screen, or the small amount of gas left in the tank evaporated and varnished up the inlet screen - clean the screen with a small bristle (not metal) brush and carb cleaner,

2) The fuel line from the tank to the carb varnished up. If you carefully pull the line free of the carb (after loosening any clamp or retaining nut) and hold the end below the gas tank level, gas should flow out (being careful about free gas safety). If not, then remove the end at the tank for second - gas should flow out of the tank. If gas comes out of the tank, the hose or filter or carb is the problem. If not, then tank inlet filter is clogged (or you forgot to fill the tank).

3) Ditto on disconnecting the fuel tube from any in-line filter - see if gas runs out of the tube at the inlet but not the outlet of the filter, which would mean plugged filter (which are usually throw-away type),

4) You say will start if you put gas in the carb - I presume you mean pouring it down the air throat, not in the carb gas bowl itself. If the gas in the carb evaporated, then the tiny metering jets in the carb probably varnished up. This would require disassembly and cleaning of the carb - not a do it yourself job unless you have gas engine mechanic experience.

5) Carb inlet control valve (if it has one at the fuel line inlet to the carb) varnished up, which means removing and cleaning or replacing it.

Unfortunately, this sort of problem is common for mowers, chain saws, weed wackers, etc that are stored in a heated place, as the gas evaporates faster in the warm environment. I keep my power yard tools in an outside shed all winter (about 7 months here) full of fuel, and they have started with not more than 2 pulls every year for 30 years. And that is without using fuel stabilizer, which I would definitely recommend for indoor-stored equipment.

Answered 7 years ago by LCD


Having had a very cold and long winter the tractor's battery went bad from not being started I had to replace the battery that was less than a year old It now works great.

Answered 6 years ago by Guest_9029722


Ohhhh - you tricked me saying you thought it was not getting fuel - I jumped right to that and failed to ask if it was electric start and turning over.

Glad it runs fine now - if you have winters in your area, you should bring the battery in for the winter and put it on trickle charger at least some of the time, to keep it charged up. If left outside all winter and does not get below about freezing, then you should run it for about 15 minutes every month or so to keep it charged. Otherwise, lead-acid battery life is likely to be months rather than years, because partially depleted batteries lose life rapidly - have to stay fully charged to get full life out of them, not store partly depleted, because they start sulfonating - and of course if freeze while low charge or very hard freeze (below about -30F) then bye bye battery.

Answered 6 years ago by LCD

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