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Will anything other than lack of lubrication...

Discussion in 'Mechanic and Repair' started by DFW Area Landscaper, Nov 7, 2006.

  1. DFW Area Landscaper

    DFW Area Landscaper LawnSite Silver Member
    from DFW, TX
    Posts: 2,116

    cause a small air cooled engine to seize? For the second time this year, one of my crew leaders brought in a Honda mower and the rope won't pull, the engine is seized. I know for certain the first time was him not putting in enough oil during a weekly oil change.

    After that little learning lesson, I went out and bought a measuring cup and drew a permanent line around it on the 22 ounce mark to make sure they ALWAYS put in enough oil.

    Well, he comes in again last Friday with another seized engine.

    I don't get it. I make my crew leaders install a fresh, clean outer foam air filter every day and change the oil once a week. If these engines are not running too fast, they ought to last longer. Honda makes one of the best engines on the market, don't they?

    It seems to me, if an engine is going to "wear out" you would lose horse power. We lost another one earlier this season to that...the engine just wouldn't run with enough HP to engage the blade. It was just worn out from a worker playing with the carb to get the RPM's and ground speed faster.

    Seems to me a seized engine could only be caused by lack of oil. Besides that, wouldn't an engine in the process of locking up make some aweful noise and sounds in the minutes before it seized?

    Any thoughts?

    PS...please leave in this forum for more people to see.

    DFW Area Landscaper
  2. Dirt Digger2

    Dirt Digger2 LawnSite Silver Member
    from PA
    Posts: 2,396

    excessive heat will but that is usually caused by lack of lubrication. Also i'm assuming this isnt the case...but if you leave an engine out long enough rust can have a factor.
  3. Total.Lawn.Care

    Total.Lawn.Care LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 841

    Sounds to me like they are used often enough that rust would not be an issue. Heat and friction, due to lack of lubrication is an immediate cause for lockup. Other than that, I cannot see it.
  4. all ferris

    all ferris LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,307

    There is lots more to it than just lube. If the heads get dirty and are not cleaned on a regular basis the motor will overheat and sieze. A valve could have broken and slapped the piston causing a hole on the piston and siezing the motor. there are many different things that could have happened to cause the motor to stop working.
  5. I had a WB with a Honda engine that siezed. Mine was from running on a bank too long. The oil all ran to one side and the oil pump couldn't pump it thru the motor.
  6. DFW Area Landscaper

    DFW Area Landscaper LawnSite Silver Member
    from DFW, TX
    Posts: 2,116

    I can understand a properly lubricated, extremely used engine losing compression over time. I can't understand how a propery lubricated engine would just seize up.

    This engine was a week away from finishing season two. Not very old in my opinion.

    DFW Area Landscaper
  7. lawnmaniac883

    lawnmaniac883 LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,613

    What oil are you running?
  8. khouse

    khouse LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,465

    how often do you take the blower housing off and clean the cooling fins? what doe's it look like in there if you've been doing it?
  9. Envy Lawn Service

    Envy Lawn Service LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 11,062

    Well... did you check the oil level?
    Was it where it needed to be?

    What kind of oil are you using?
    Ever thought of CHANGING that?

    What was "said" to be going on at the time that it locked up?

    There are a lot of reasons for locking an engine up.
    It's hard to know without inspection.
  10. Restrorob

    Restrorob LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 11,023

    Ding ding ding.....We have a winner, Tear it down as Envy said then post your findings. Everything thus far is speculation. Some pics. would help also.

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