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11 hp. Kawi problem

Discussion in 'Mechanic and Repair' started by Jason Rose, Mar 9, 2006.

  1. Jason Rose

    Jason Rose LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,858

    Problem that's baffled me... It starts right up and runs fine for about 30 seconds to a minute, then it acts like i have thrown the choke on. It starts spitting, sputtering, and throwing black smoke, generally stalling but not dieing. After doing this non-stop for about 3 minutes it then just clears up and runs fine! However, yesterday after mowing with it for about 20 minutes it started acting up intermittently at the end too.

    While it's choking out I can move the choke lever and it only makes it worse. I checked the linkage on the carb to make sure that the choke was totally open and it is. I thought the first time it happened it was just an isolated incident, maybe a bit of dirt in a jet or something, but it does this every freaking time I need to use it! I just don't see that it can even BE the carburetor causing the problem... I thought maybe it could be a switch or something (this is on a small walker mower) but if it was a switch I would think it would either work or not and not. Iv'e wiggled wires, unplugged and re connected harnesses and switches while it's running bad and nothing seems to help.

    I'm off now to see if I can find a carb kit for it, maybe the needle or seat isn't sealing good? Of course, since it's on a walker it's a b$^%* to get to anything, I hope I don't have to pull the engine to get the carb off!

    Anyone have any suggestions???? Thanks!
  2. Restrorob

    Restrorob LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 11,029

    Sounds like you done answered your own question. Go through the carb. and install the kit. You will need to change the plugs now also they are probably fouled by now, Also don't forget the fuel filter. If that doesn't solve the problem shout back.
  3. Jason Rose

    Jason Rose LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,858

    Well I went by the small engine place after I posted this. The guy there said it was probably just the needle not seating fully and causing it to flood out. He said it most likely won't need anything replaced, just run some Sea Foam thru the carb and it will clear up. If it dosn't then I wil have to replace the needle and seat. For some reason none of his books or the computer was showing any kint of complete kit for kawasaki carburators, everything had to be bought seperately.

    I dumped the sea foam in the tank, I wanted to pour it straight into the carb intake but since this has a donaldson air cleaner clamped onto it I can't do that, plus the intake is on the side instead of on top. I ran it for about 5 minutes full throttle, when it started to choke out I shut the fuel valve off and sure enough in 15 or 20 seconds it cleared right up and ran fine again till it ran the bowl out of gas.

    It just was serviced totally when I bought it (used) and I assume it had a new plug. It runs smooth as can be otherwise.
  4. Restrorob

    Restrorob LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 11,029

    Personally I don't believe in any additives all they do if anything is prolong the problem, Repair it right and not have to wonder if it's going to function properly the next day. There are kits available through the carb. manufacturers (walbro, Nikki ect.). But if it's running fine other than flooding all you really need is the needle valve like said. I only suggested the plug(s) because in a flooding situation they soot up and turn black, They can be cleaned some what but won't last long especially NGK's which is whats supposed to be in yours.
  5. Jason Rose

    Jason Rose LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,858

    Well an update on the engine... It ran pretty good after I added the sea foam, I thought my problems were solved! NOT! Started acting up every time I started it again, this time it was doing something a little different each time.

    Usually when it starts cutting out, smoking and backfiring, it will run ok at an idle to half throttle but get BAD the faster you rev it.

    Then a couple times, It would start acting up and I could get it to run smooth at full throttle with the choke half on.

    One is saying it's LEAN and the other is saying it's RICH! Grrrrr!

    And today it finally shot craps and stopped running good AT ALL. HAd to bring it home and tear into the carb. I cleaned the whole thing throughly with a couple sizes of wire, carb cleaner, and an air gun. Re-assembled the thing and it still ran the same. I took it apart AGAIN and re-cleaned everything even better than before leaving no stone unturned, put it back together, started it up and it ran PERFECT!!! man I was in business! Hopped on it, drove it 10 feet and it started cutting out, smoking, and backfiring again:angry: :angry: :angry:

    I give up. I loaded it up and took it to a small engine place. Iv'e got a feeling i'm going to be buying a new carb for it... I had a Kohler do something similar a few years ago and they ended up having to replace the whole thing (under warranty that had ran out thank god) that one would have cost me about 300 bucks! The kawi carb is only $118.00
  6. joshlawn

    joshlawn LawnSite Member
    Messages: 143

    I'm having the same problem with my mower, and was wondering if buying the new carb fixed the problem?
  7. khouse

    khouse LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,465

    I came from the old school where you torn doen the carb, soaked it in carb cleaner, blew it out with compressed air, installed a new kit and your done. Well this works great on automobile engines and most of the older cast iron carbs that were simple. Now these new efficient carbs has very tiny ports and passages and sometimes rebuilding them just doesn't get the job done. What I do is remove the carb and see if there is anything obvious. Next tear it down and blow it out, reinstall it, make sure the fillters are new and fuel and tank are clean. If it doesn't help it then I simply order a new carb. Most new carb kits cost 15 to 25 bucks - with the mark up and labor expect to pay around 125 to 175 for a rebuild. A new carb may cost 85 to 140. You will save a lot of time also. Just my opionion.
  8. Jason Rose

    Jason Rose LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,858

    I guess I forgot to update this thread when I finally got the problem fixed!

    Problem I was having was NOT the carburator at all. (first mechanic I took it too TOLD me that was the problem) I took it to someone else and within a few minutes they said "sounds like the iginition module is going bad". After running a little diagnostics, find that the spark isn't getting advanced as the throttle speeds up like it's supposed too... cause: Bad iginition module. Part was 55 bucks for a little dude the size of a quarter.

    They also had a good laugh at the other guys expence, as he was "supposedly" a trained small engine tech, but couldn't see an obvious problem.

    I can do a lot of repairs myslef, but often the electrical stuff I don't have the books or know what to even look for or how to test components.
  9. joshlawn

    joshlawn LawnSite Member
    Messages: 143

    Thanks for the reply, I'll mention that to my mechanic when I take it in and hopefully that will fix the problem.

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