Top Reasons why your Riding mower or Tractor wont start:
- Gas- how old is the gasoline you are using? Is it last years, month? The gas you get at the gas station has a shelf life of 3 weeks - tops! After three weeks the ethanol in the fuel attracts water and will make your mower hard to start or not start at all. Even if you drain your fuel at this point most likely it will still not start until the carb is removed and cleaned. Which brings us to the next conclusion.
- Blades are Engaged- This is most common problem we encounter with our customers. Picture this: you are riding along and you reach for your beer and its all gone. You shut off the mower go inside to refill. You get back on the mower and now it wont start. First thing to check is your blade engagement knob (PTO). You need to shut off your blades before you shut off your mower.
- Battery - A good battery has an average life span of about 3-4 years. How old is your battery? If it is below 45 degrees it might by hard starting also. You should keep a trickle charge on your battery for extended life. Also check your fuses. If your mower just clicks instead of turning over it could be a blown fuse.
- carburetor -First thing to check is your oil. Does it smell of gas? If it does then your carburetor is leaking into your crankcase. Sometimes you can get it started with starting fluid but if you run your mower like this you will blow up your engine! Carburetor problems on tractors/ riding lawnmowers in most cases are rare. If there is a problem it would be surging.
- Starter- You could have a bad starter. Most shops will be able to test this for you over the counter if you bring in your starter motor. Your motor might be fine but the top bendix is not making contact with your flywheel. This is an easy fix by getting the top parts of your starter motor. Things that are not easy to diagnosis but cheap enough to try is your starter solenoid or key switch. These above parts will cause your mower to crank and crank but not start.
- poor maintenance- When is the last time you looked at your air cleaner? If air can't get in then your mower will either stall or not start at all. If you have dusty conditions your air cleaner needs to be changed twice a season. Sometimes it is as easy as changing your sparkplug! Simple inexpensive things you can do to save your mower!
OHV head gasket- The head gasket will blow usually caused by the engine over heating. Mice nests are the biggest culprit of an engine over heating. Hopefully you caught it in time and have not run it too long to cause catastrophic damage to the engine. The head gaskets will have to be replaced. Not a small job. It will also consume much more oil than what was needed previously.