Briggs And Stratton V Twin Running on One Cylinder – Fix it Now!

Briggs and Stratton V Twin running on one cylinder indicates a potential issue with the engine’s ignition system or fuel delivery.

Why Is My Briggs & Stratton V-Twin Running On Only One Cylinder?

Briggs & Stratton V-Twin engines are reliable workhorses, but they aren’t immune to problems. One common issue is when the engine starts running on only one cylinder. This leads to:

  • Reduced Power: The engine will be noticeably weaker.
  • Rough Running: It might vibrate excessively or make unusual noises.
  • Difficulty Starting: It can be harder to get the engine going.

Here’s a breakdown of potential causes and what to do:

1. Ignition Problems

  • Faulty Spark Plug: Check the spark plug on the non-functioning cylinder. It might be dirty, damaged, or have an incorrect gap. Clean, re-gap, or replace as needed.
  • Bad Ignition Coil: The coil creates the spark. Use a spark tester to ensure it’s working. Replace it if it’s defective.
  • Damaged Spark Plug Wire: Check for cracks or breaks that prevent the spark from reaching the plug.

2. Fuel Issues

  • Clogged Carburetor: A dirty carburetor can restrict fuel flow to one cylinder. Clean the carb thoroughly, paying attention to jets and passages.
  • Bad Fuel: Old or contaminated fuel can cause problems. Drain out the old gas and replace it with fresh fuel.
  • Faulty Fuel Pump: If your engine has a fuel pump, ensure it’s pumping correctly.

3. Mechanical Problems

  • Stuck or Broken Valve: Valves control the intake of air/fuel and exhaust. If one is stuck or broken, the cylinder can’t function. This usually requires more in-depth repair.
  • Low Compression: Test the compression in both cylinders. A large difference means a potential issue with piston rings, valves, or a blown head gasket.

Troubleshooting Steps

  1. Identify the Dead Cylinder: While running, pull one spark plug wire at a time. The cylinder that doesn’t cause a change in engine performance is the problem one.
  2. Check the Spark: Remove the spark plug from that cylinder and test for a healthy spark.
  3. Inspect the Fuel: Ensure fresh fuel is flowing freely to the carburetor.
  4. More advanced checks: If the basics don’t solve the problem, you might need to delve into cleaning the carburetor or testing compression.

Symptom: Engine Misfires

Engine misfires can be a common symptom in Briggs and Stratton V Twin engines, particularly if the engine is running on one cylinder. This issue can result in reduced power, erratic performance, and uneven running, requiring immediate attention and diagnosis to determine the underlying cause.

Misfiring in a Briggs and Stratton V Twin engine can be a frustrating issue to deal with. When an engine misfires, it can run unevenly or even stall, affecting its overall performance. In this section, we will explore some possible causes for engine misfires and how to diagnose and fix the problem.

Possible Causes:

Fuel Delivery Issues:

  • Clogged fuel lines or filters can restrict the flow of fuel to the engine, resulting in misfires.
  • A malfunctioning fuel pump can cause inadequate fuel delivery to the cylinders.

Ignition System Problems:

  • Faulty spark plugs can lead to misfires as they fail to ignite the fuel-air mixture properly.
  • A malfunctioning ignition coil or module can disrupt the spark production and result in misfiring.

Compression Loss:

  • If one cylinder experiences low compression, it can cause misfiring as the fuel-air mixture cannot ignite properly.
  • Leaky valves or piston rings can contribute to compression loss and misfires.

How To Diagnose The Problem:

Perform a Visual Inspection:

  • Look for any signs of fuel leaks, loose connections, or damaged components in the fuel delivery system.
  • Inspect the spark plugs for signs of fouling or damage.
  • Check for any visible vacuum leaks that might affect the engine’s performance.

Check Fuel Delivery:

  • Ensure that the fuel tank has enough fuel.
  • Test the fuel pump’s functionality by listening for its operation or using a fuel pressure gauge.
  • Inspect and clean the fuel lines and filters to eliminate any blockages.

Test the Ignition System:

  • Remove the spark plugs and check for proper gap and condition.
  • Test each ignition coil using an ignition tester or multimeter to ensure they are producing a strong spark.
  • Inspect the ignition module for any signs of damage or wear.

Troubleshooting Steps:

01. Step: Check Spark Plugs:

  • Remove the spark plugs and clean or replace them if fouled or worn.
  • Ensure the spark plugs are gapped correctly.

02. Step : Inspect Fuel Filter:

  • Remove and inspect the fuel filter for any debris or clogs.
  • Replace the fuel filter if necessary.

03. Step: Clean or Replace Carburetor:

  • Remove the carburetor and clean it thoroughly to remove any built-up deposits or debris.
  • If cleaning does not resolve the issue, consider replacing the carburetor.

04. Step: Examine Ignition Coil:

  • Test the ignition coils using an ignition tester or multimeter.
  • Replace any faulty ignition coils.

05. Step: Measure Compression:

  • Use a compression gauge to measure the compression levels in each cylinder.
  • If one cylinder has significantly lower compression than the others, it may require further inspection and repair.

Solution: Fixing The Misfire:

Replacing Faulty Components:

  • Replace any faulty spark plugs, ignition coils, or other components identified during the diagnosis.

Adjusting Engine Timing:

  • Consult the engine manual or seek professional assistance to ensure the engine’s timing is correctly set.

Cleaning the Carburetor:

  • Regularly clean the carburetor to prevent buildup that can affect fuel delivery.

Improving Fuel Quality:

  • Use high-quality fuel to prevent fuel system and engine issues.

Regular Maintenance:

Symptom: Loss Of Power

Experiencing a loss of power in your Briggs and Stratton V Twin? It could be running on only one cylinder, causing decreased performance and efficiency.

Find out how to troubleshoot and resolve this issue for optimal engine performance.

Losing power in a Briggs and Stratton V Twin engine can be frustrating and hinder your lawn maintenance efforts.

This section will guide you through the potential causes and diagnostic steps to restore your engine’s power efficiently.

Potential Causes:

When your Briggs and Stratton V Twin engine is running on one cylinder, several factors could be responsible for the loss of power. These include:

Fuel System Issues:

  • Clogged or dirty fuel filter: A restricted fuel filter can restrict the fuel flow to the engine, leading to a loss of power.
  • Debris in the fuel tank: Contaminants or sediment in the fuel tank can clog the fuel lines, affecting engine performance.
  • Faulty fuel pump: A malfunctioning fuel pump may fail to deliver an adequate amount of fuel to the engine.

Mechanical Problems:

  • Ignition problems: Faulty spark plugs, damaged ignition module, or an inefficient ignition coil can cause one cylinder to misfire, resulting in power loss.
  • Compression issues: Low compression in one cylinder can cause a significant decrease in engine power.
  • Valve problems: Maladjusted or damaged valves can disrupt the air-fuel mixture and affect engine performance.

Exhaust Restrictions:

  • Clogged muffler: A blocked muffler can restrict the exhaust flow, leading to a decrease in engine power.
  • Restricted exhaust pipe: An obstructed exhaust pipe can impede proper exhaust gas evacuation, resulting in reduced power output.

Diagnostic Steps:

To diagnose and troubleshoot the loss of power in your Briggs and Stratton V Twin engine, you can follow these steps:

Check for Fuel Contamination:

  • Inspect the fuel for water or debris contamination.
  • If contamination is present, drain the fuel tank and replace with clean fuel.

Inspect Air Filter:

  • Remove and inspect the air filter for dirt, debris, or damage.
  • Clean or replace the air filter as necessary.

Examine Muffler and Exhaust System:

  • Inspect the muffler for any signs of clogging or damage.
  • Check the exhaust pipe for obstructions.
  • Clear any debris or replace faulty components.

Troubleshooting Tips:

To address the loss of power issue and restore your Briggs and Stratton V Twin engine’s performance, you can try the following tips:

Clean or Replace Fuel Filter:

  • Remove and clean the fuel filter, or replace it if necessary, to ensure proper fuel flow.

Adjust Carburetor Settings:

  • Fine-tune the carburetor settings to optimize the air-fuel mixture, ensuring optimal engine performance.

Address Mechanical Issues:

  • Replace faulty ignition components such as spark plugs, ignition module, or ignition coil.
  • Conduct a compression test and address any low compression issues.
  • Inspect and adjust the valves to ensure smooth airflow.

Resolution: Restoring Engine Power

To restore engine power in your Briggs and Stratton V Twin running on one cylinder, consider the following actions:

Replacing Faulty Components:

  • If any components (such as spark plugs, ignition module, or ignition coil) are found to be faulty, replace them with new ones to ensure proper ignition.

Repairing or Replacing Exhaust Parts:

  • Clear any obstructions in the muffler or exhaust pipe to allow unrestricted exhaust flow.
  • If the muffler or exhaust system is damaged, replace it with a new one to maintain optimal engine performance.

Regularly Clean and Maintain the Engine:

  • Ensure routine cleaning and maintenance of the engine to prevent future issues and maintain its overall health. This includes regular oil changes, air filter cleaning/replacement, and spark plug inspection/replacement.

Symptom: Uneven Running

If your Briggs and Stratton V Twin engine is running unevenly, it could be a sign that it’s only running on one cylinder.

This symptom can indicate various issues, such as a faulty spark plug, ignition coil, or carburetor problem.

If you notice that your Briggs and Stratton V Twin engine is running unevenly, it can be a cause for concern. An engine running on one cylinder not only affects performance but can also lead to further damage if left unchecked.

Don’t worry, though! We’ve got you covered with some insights into the causes of this issue and the steps you can take to get your engine running smoothly again.

Causes Of Uneven Operation

There are several potential causes for uneven running in your Briggs and Stratton V Twin engine.

Here are the common culprits to look out for:

  • Carburetor Problems: A blocked or damaged carburetor can disrupt the fuel mixture, leading to uneven operation.
  • Air Intake Issues: Restricted airflow due to clogged filters or other obstructions can cause uneven running.
  • Valve Train Malfunction: Problems with the valves, such as incorrect clearance or damage, can affect the engine’s performance.

Identifying The Problem

To resolve the uneven running issue, you’ll first need to identify the cause. Here’s how you can go about it:

  • Inspect Carburetor for Dirt or Damage: Examine the carburetor for any signs of dirt, debris, or damage. These issues can disrupt the fuel flow, resulting in uneven operation.
  • Check Air Intake System: Inspect the air intake system, including the air filter, for any blockages or restrictions. Clean or replace any clogged filters to ensure proper airflow.
  • Examine Valve Train Components: Take a look at the valve train components, such as the valves, springs, and pushrods. Look for any signs of wear, damage, or improper clearance.

Troubleshooting Steps

Once you’ve identified the cause of the uneven running, it’s time to take action. Here are some troubleshooting steps you can follow:

  • Clean or Replace Carburetor: If you find dirt or damage in the carburetor, clean it thoroughly or replace it if necessary. Ensure that the fuel mixture is properly adjusted.
  • Fix Air Intake Problems: If your air intake system is restricted, clean or replace the air filter. Remove any obstructions to allow proper airflow to the engine.
  • Adjust Valve Clearance: If the valve train components are the culprit, adjust the valve clearance according to the manufacturer’s specifications. This will help ensure smooth operation.

Solution: Achieving Smooth Engine Operation

To maintain smooth engine operation and prevent future issues, here are some essential practices:

  • Regularly Clean and Maintain Carburetor: Keep the carburetor clean and free from dirt or debris. Regular maintenance will help maintain proper fuel flow and prevent uneven running.
  • Keep Air Intake System Clean: Inspect and clean the air intake system regularly. Replace air filters as needed, and ensure the system remains free from obstructions.
  • Perform Regular Valve Adjustments: Stay on top of valve clearance adjustments to ensure proper function. Regular maintenance will help prevent valve-related uneven running issues.

Professional Servicing Recommendations

In some cases, it may be best to seek professional servicing for your Briggs and Stratton V Twin engine. Experts can provide a thorough diagnosis and address any complex issues that may arise. Don’t hesitate to reach out to a qualified technician if you need further assistance.

Troubleshooting Guide: Briggs And Stratton V Twin Running on One Cylinder – Fix it Now!

Frequently Asked Questions

How Can I Diagnose Which Cylinder Is Not Firing In My Briggs And Stratton V Twin Engine?

To identify the cylinder not firing in your Briggs and Stratton V Twin engine, you can perform a simple spark test. Disconnect one spark plug wire at a time while the engine is running.

If the engine’s performance doesn’t change when you disconnect a particular spark plug wire, then that cylinder is likely not firing.

What Are The Common Symptoms Of A Briggs And Stratton V Twin Running On One Cylinder?

Some common symptoms of a Briggs and Stratton V Twin running on one cylinder include a loss of power or uneven power delivery, rough idle, engine misfires, and excessive exhaust smoke.

Additionally, the engine may run hotter than normal, and fuel consumption may increase.


In sum, a Briggs and Stratton V-twin engine running on only one cylinder is a common issue faced by many owners. However, this problem is not insurmountable. By following the troubleshooting steps mentioned in this blog post, you can identify the root cause of the issue and take appropriate action.

Whether it’s a faulty spark plug, carburetor problem, or an issue with the ignition system, understanding the mechanics of your engine is crucial. Regular maintenance, such as cleaning and inspecting spark plugs, checking fuel flow, and keeping the engine properly lubricated, can help prevent this problem from occurring in the first place.

Additionally, proper storage during the off-season and using clean, quality fuel can contribute to the longevity and performance of your Briggs and Stratton V-twin engine. By taking these steps, you can ensure smooth operation and enjoy the powerful performance of your engine.

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