Lawn Mower Won’t Stay Running? (Starts then Dies) – How to Fix

Does your lawn mower start and then die right away? This can be frustrating, especially when you have prepared to trim your lawn grass after a long period of time. Let’s explain why your lawn mower won’t stay running and how to fix the problem.

A clogged air filter or carburetor, insufficient or bad fuel in the tank and a problem in the ignition system are the main reasons a lawn mower won’t stay running even after starting well.

NOTE: Always refer to your user manual when diagnosing or fixing a lawn mower. Additionally, shut off your lawn mower and disconnect the spark plug wire to prevent it from accidentally starting. Wear hand gloves, a mask, and protective eye goggles for enhanced safety.

Why Lawn Mower Won’t Stay Running

Without proper care and maintenance, your lawn mower will likely run into problems. If your lawn mower won’t start or stay running, it is a sign that something somewhere is not working right. I

Ther following are reasons a lawn mower won’t stay running and possible fixes.

1. Problem with fuel

An insufficient amount of fuel is what everyone will think about when a lawn mower stalls. This should not be a concern if you just fueled your lawn mower. Fuel is what engines burn to produce power; therefore, don’t expect your machine to run without sufficient fuel in the tank.

Bad fuel can also make your lawn mower engine stop abruptly after starting. Fuel can go bad in as little as 30 days. This happens if you don’t stabilize your lawn mower fuel before storage. The additive prevents the fuel from corroding or gumming up.

As some sources suggest, draining gas from lawn mower fuel tanks before storage is also harmful. The tank becomes open to condensation, especially during the cold winter. The moisture droplets will corrode the tank and fuel lines.

How to Fix

  • Always check the amount of fuel in the tank before starting your lawn mower engine.
  • Stabilize your fuel for long storage of your lawn mower to prevent it from going bad
  • Drain contaminated fuel from your lawn mower and clean the carburetor before refilling the tank.

2. Improper airflow

A lawn mower engine needs clean air to operate. In the carburetor, fuel and air are mixed before being directed into the combustion chamber. Air has to go through a filter so that the filter fibers trap dust, dirt, and debris.

Over time, air filters and carburetor gets clogged from dirt and oil deposits. Without cleaning, this will impair the flow of air into the engine. This will typically cause your lawn mower to die after starting, sputter or not start at all.

How to Fix

3. Ignition system issue

Spark plugs are an important part of the ignition system. They produce an important spark that ignites the fuel/air mixture for combustion. Dirty or worn-out spark plugs can cause misfires, leading to engine stalling. Your lawn mower may also have problem starting if spark plugs are bad.

How to Fix

  • Regularly inspect your lawn mower spark plugs and clean them with a wire brush and a recommended cleaner.
  • Occasionally replace old or worn-out spark plugs with new ones recommended for lawnmowers.

Additional Ways of enhancing your Mower’s Performance

The following are important maintenance practices for enhancing your lawn mower’s performance and life.

Periodical oil change

You should change the lawn mower engine oil on a regular or as directed in the user manual adds power and more life your lawn mower engine. Dirty, worn-out oil has no ability to protect the engine from friction and overheating.

Sharpening blades

Always sharpen your lawn mower blades every season. You can do it when storing or at the start of the season. Sharp blades reduce the burden of cutting grass. You will be straining your lawn mower engine if you cut grass with blunt or unsharpened blades.

Clean after use

After using your lawn mower, clean it and store it in a cool, dry place. Grass clippings, soil, and other dirt can easily corrode your lawn mower parts if not cleaned. Hose the mowing deck and wipe the engine housing with a damp rag.

Winterize for storage

You should winterize your lawn mower before you store it for winter. Stabilize your lawn mower fuel, change the oil, and store it in a clean, dry place like a garage or shed. This can also be the right time to clean or replace air filter and spark plugs for readiness when the mowing season arrives.

Final Thought

Lawnmowers are helpful machines for maintaining the beauty of our yards and gardens. If you want to get good performance from your lawn mower without any problems then invest in proper care and maintenance. Take your lawn mower to a professional dealer for any issue you cannot handle.

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