HELP...Trouble starting Tecumseh 13HP Enduro/XL

Discussion in 'Mechanic and Repair' started by vinniemak, Apr 30, 2004.

  1. vinniemak

    vinniemak LawnSite Member
    Messages: 2



    I have 13 HP Sears riding mower which came with this Tecumseh 13HP Enduro/XL engine.

    This engine has slowly deteriorated to the point - that it just won't start...let me explain:

    (A) The engine has exhibited weird habits when it is cold....meaning 65 degrees or less...starting with full choke it sometimes coughs and spurts and starts..and I have to fiddle with the choke lever from high to medium to high....and finally to medium. God help me if I don't follow this procedure...the damn engine won't ever get "one" shot and if you kinda floods the engine or something !! and you're screwed..

    (B) I have been meticulous about changing the oil, the air filter, putting new gas in...especially careful about storing for the season (I am in New England - near Boston...and it is stored in a shed).

    (C) Today was a sunny 75 + deg day...and the engine cranked but it did not start...I emptied the gas and removed the nut on the side of the carburettor and emptied the gas in there...

    I need help...I looked in the manual to see if there is any help section for "carburettor" adjustment...and it say refer to the Engine Manual...what engine manual??? I only got the Sears/Weedeater manual and it has a brief section on the engine - but nothing to adjust the carburettor (someone I talked to said it might need a carburettor adjustment).

    Please someone help post....or email me something...the goddamn grass is growin' and the damn mower won't start...

    Thanks in advance.

  2. Richard Martin

    Richard Martin LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 14,699

    1: Check to see if it has spark
    2: If it has spark then shoot one quick shot of starting fluid in the carb.
    3: If it starts but then dies you have a carb/fuel problem.

    There are any number of reasons it won't start. Do those first 3 things and get back to me.
  3. barnard

    barnard LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 618

    Have you tried a new plug?
  4. vinniemak

    vinniemak LawnSite Member
    Messages: 2

    Hi, Richard & Barnard:

    Thanks for your response. Here is what I found:

    (A) I opened the engine cover and removed the solenoid and the spark plug wire. I noticed that in the middle of the wire was a part that was sort of notched away...i.e possibly eaten by "MICE".

    (B) I also noticed grass, mulch, twigs etc inside the compartment..the mice had found a nice cosy hole to reside in for the winter.

    (C) I cleaned out the area....and used "electrical tape" to tape off the notched area on the black wire.

    (D) Then I put back the solenoid and attached the spark plug to the end and then "grounded the front" of the plug.

    (E) Then as Richard had indicated, I started the mower to look for a "spark". The spark looked blue and healthy...and so I screwed it back in to the engine block.

    (F) I fired the engine...6 or 7 turns went by....then it smoked, coughed and sputtered (like a typical worthless quality Tecumseh the way is no comparison to a high quality Honda engine !!).

    (G) I mowed, yesterday, thanks to y' starts fine now, and I am pretty sure that the small notch on the spark plug wire caused a voltage loss, thus weakening the spark etc...

    Again, I appreciate your responses, and will post if something else goes wrong (and I am sure it will !!).



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