Lawn Mower Won't Start After Running Out of Gas

Lawn Mower Won’t Start After Running Out of Gas: Quick Fixes!

A lawn mower that won’t start after running out of gas may require a simple refuel and carburetor priming. Check the fuel level and ensure the spark plug is functioning correctly to troubleshoot.

Starting a lawn mower should be straightforward, but occasionally they can be stubborn, especially after running out of fuel.

This situation is a common frustration for garden enthusiasts and homeowners alike. Dealing with a lawn mower that refuses to start can be as simple as refilling the gas tank or may involve a few additional steps to get the engine purring again.

Ensuring you have fresh fuel and that the essential components like the spark plug, air filter, and carburetor are in good condition is crucial.

This article guides you through the fundamental checks and procedures to restore your machine’s functionality efficiently.

The Frustrating Problem

Experiencing a lawn mower that won’t start after running out of gas ranks high on the frustration scale.

It’s a sunny day, and there you are, ready to tame your lawn into a picturesque haven, until the unexpected sputter and halt of your trusty mower shatters the peace.

This garden quandary leaves many scratching their heads. Why does this happen? Let’s investigate the empty tank enigma and the signs that your mower is crying out for fuel.

The Empty Tank Conundrum

An empty tank seems simple: refill it and resume mowing. Yet, it’s not always that straightforward.

When a mower runs dry, air can enter the fuel system, creating a block that stops new gas from reaching the engine.

Here’s how to tackle this issue:

  • Refill the tank with fresh gasoline.
  • Check for clogs in the fuel line.
  • Prime the mower, if equipped, a few times to help fuel reach the engine.
  • Attempt to start your mower a couple of times.

If these steps fail, further investigation into the carburetor or fuel filter may be necessary. These components can become gummed up or blocked after a period of idling or after running out of fuel.

Signs Your Lawn Mower Is Gas-starved

A mower gasping for fuel showcases distinct symptoms. Acknowledge these signs to diagnose a fuel issue swiftly:

Sign What to Look For
Engine Struggling Engine turns over slowly or not at all.
Sputtering Sounds Irregular engine noises before it shuts off.
No Fuel in Filter Visually check if the fuel filter appears dry.
Stale Gas Old or watery gasoline lacking proper combustion.

Recognize these indicators, and you’ll save time and avoid potential damage to your lawn mower.

Simple routine checks can prevent gas-related starting issues and keep your mower running smoothly for the long haul.

Initial Checks And Preparations

Beginning our journey to revive a stubborn lawnmower starts with initial checks. It’s crucial to take these steps seriously.

Understanding what to look for can save time and effort before heading deep into troubleshooting.

Safety First: Disabling The Mower

Before we dive into the mower, ensuring our safety is paramount. We want to avoid any accidental starts. Here’s what to do:

  • Turn off the mower’s engine completely.
  • Remove the spark plug wire to prevent the engine from starting.
  • Ensure the mower is on stable ground away from any hazards.

Inspecting Gas Quality And Freshness

Old or contaminated gas can cause issues. A healthy engine needs fresh fuel. Let’s inspect:

Check For Action
Color and smell Look for a clear, amber color and a strong petrol smell.
Contaminants Check for water or debris in the tank.
Fuel level Refill if needed with the right gas for your mower.

If you find issues, drain the old gas and replace it with fresh fuel.

Refueling Right

Your lawn mower has sputtered its last and now refuses to roar back to life, leaving you baffled amidst your half-trimmed turf.

Getting your mower up and running after it’s drained its last drop of gas involves more than simply pouring in more fuel.

Let’s dive into how to refuel the right way, ensuring your gardening companion is ready for more action on your lawn.

Choosing The Correct Gasoline

Selecting the right type of gasoline is critical for the health and performance of your lawn mower. Here are key points to keep in mind:

  • Check your mower’s manual. It holds vital information on the recommended gasoline.
  • Use fresh, clean gasoline. Old or contaminated fuel can cause problems.
  • Avoid ethanol blends if possible, as they can damage the engine over time.
  • Look for gasoline with an octane rating suitable for your mower.

Filling Up The Tank: Best Practices

To prevent further issues and ensure a smooth start, follow these best practices:

  1. Allow the mower to cool before refilling to prevent any accidents.
  2. Clean the fuel cap area first to avoid debris entering the tank.
  3. Use a clean funnel or spout to avoid contamination.
  4. Fill the tank only to the recommended level to avoid spills.
  5. After refueling, securely tighten the fuel cap to prevent leaks.

By adhering to these tips, your trusty lawn mower will thank you with a purring start and a readiness to tackle the green expanse before you.

Priming The Engine

Starting up a lawn mower should be a smooth affair, even after it has run out of gas. One critical step in this process is priming the engine.

Priming ensures the carburetor gets enough fuel to start the engine. Here we’ll explore the essentials of priming, so you can get back to keeping your lawn pristine without a hitch.

The Role Of The Primer Bulb

The primer bulb is a small rubber button on the lawn mower. Its job is simple but vital: to push gas directly into the carburetor.

This helps the engine start when it’s out of fuel or has been sitting unused for a while. A primer bulb ensures the engine doesn’t start dry, which can prevent damage and wear.

How To Properly Prime A Lawn Mower

Priming a lawn mower is easy and takes only a few seconds. Follow these steps for a quick start:

  • Locate the primer bulb. It’s typically near the carburetor, made of rubber and is round or oval.
  • Press the bulb firmly three times. This sends fuel to the carburetor.
  • Each press should be full and complete. Make sure to let the bulb refill with air between presses.
  • Do not over prime. Excessive fuel can flood the engine, making it harder to start.
  • After priming, pull the starter rope. Your mower should start with ease.

Remember, a well-primed engine is essential for a smooth running lawn mower. Follow these steps carefully and you’ll avoid common start-up issues. Keep your lawn looking great with minimal fuss!

Air Intake And Filter Inspection

Experiencing a lawn mower that won’t start after running out of gas? This common issue often has a simple fix.

An important step in troubleshooting is inspecting the mower’s air intake and filter. A clean airway is crucial for the engine to start and run smoothly.

Cleaning The Air Filter

Over time, grass clippings and dirt can clog your mower’s air filter, restricting air flow to the engine. A clogged filter mimics a fuel shortage, preventing the engine from starting.

Follow these steps to clean the air filter:

  • Remove the air filter cover.
  • Take out the filter.
  • Tap it gently to remove loose dirt.
  • If it’s paper, replace it if it’s dirty.
  • If it’s foam, wash it with soap and water.
  • Squeeze out excess water and let it dry.
  • Place the clean or new filter back in.

Ensuring Proper Air Intake Flow

Even if your filter is clean, airflow can be blocked in other areas.

Ensure these points for proper air intake:

  • Check for obstructions around the air intake.
  • Inspect the intake screen for debris.
  • Clean any mud or grass that blocks air flow.
  • Make sure the air intake pathway is clear.

Regular maintenance keeps your lawn mower in top condition. A clean air filter and proper air intake flow can prevent many start-up issues. Pay attention to these details and enjoy a smooth-running lawn mower.

Fuel System Troubleshooting

Have you ever experienced that sinking feeling when your lawn mower won’t start after running out of gas?

It’s a common issue, but often one that you can fix with a bit of fuel system troubleshooting. Let’s explore the potential culprits and get your mower up and running again.

Fuel System Troubleshooting Unclogging the Carburetor

Unclogging The Carburetor

Clogged carburetors are a frequent problem in lawn mowers.

Debris and old gas can block the carburetor, hindering the engine start-up.

To fix this:

  1. Turn off the mower and let it cool.
  2. Remove the air filter to access the carburetor.
  3. Take off the carburetor bowl.
  4. Clean any gunk you find inside with carburetor cleaner.
  5. Ensure the float and needle move freely.
  6. Reassemble and test your mower.

Checking The Fuel Valve And Lines

The fuel valve and lines could be the source of the trouble.

Good flow is essential for the engine to receive gas.

  • Locate the fuel valve.
  • Make sure it’s in the ‘on’ position.
  • Look for kinks or blockages in the fuel lines.
  • Replace any damaged fuel lines.
  • Clean or replace the fuel filter.

Regular maintenance prevents these issues. Checking these systems often saves you time and keeps your lawn mower ready for action.

Spark Plug Solutions

Imagine this: you’re ready to tackle your overgrown lawn, but your mower won’t start. It could be a spark plug issue.

A bad spark plug can stop a lawn mower dead in its tracks, even after refilling the gas. Let’s troubleshoot together with easy-to-follow ‘Spark Plug Solutions’.

Assessing Spark Plug Condition

The spark plug is crucial for starting your mower. Here’s how to check it:

  • Disconnect the spark plug wire for safety.
  • Remove the spark plug using a socket wrench.
  • Inspect the plug for damage, wear, or carbon build-up.

A good spark plug should have a clean electrode and insulator. A black, sooty plug might mean it’s time for a replacement.

Replacing A Faulty Spark Plug

Found a problem with your spark plug? Here’s how to fix it:

  1. Purchase the correct replacement plug for your mower model.
  2. Install the new plug by hand first to avoid cross-threading.
  3. Tighten the plug with a wrench but don’t overdo it.

Remember to reattach the spark plug wire. With a new spark plug, your mower should roar to life!

Starting Technique

Lawnmower woes often begin just after running out of gas. Your frustration builds as your trusty machine refuses to roar to life.

The key to solving this common issue lies in mastering the starting technique. Set your mower up for success with a few tried-and-true methods to get that engine humming once more.

Correct Pulling Of The Start Cord

To start your lawnmower effectively, knowing the proper way to pull the start cord is crucial. Follow these steps to ensure a smooth pull:

  1. Stand Firm: Position yourself steadily on the side of the mower.
  2. Handle Grip: Grasp the handle firmly.
  3. Even Pull: Pull the cord in a smooth, consistent motion.
  4. Full Extension: Extend the cord fully until the engine attempts to start.
  5. Repeat if Necessary: Gently allow the cord to retract and pull again.

Adjusting The Throttle And Choke Settings

Throttle and choke adjustments can make a world of difference. Proper settings can fuel your mower’s swift startup. Check these points:

Throttle to the max: Before pulling the cord, set the throttle control to its highest position.

Choke for cold engines: If the engine is cold, the choke should be on. Once the engine runs, turn it off gradually.

Condition Throttle Setting Choke Setting
Cold Start High/Fast On
Warm Start High/Fast Off

Note: Each mower has unique features. Always check your mower’s manual for specific instructions.

Seeking Professional Help

Has your lawn mower ever stopped working after running out of gas? It can be puzzling when you refill the tank and it still won’t start.

Sometimes the issue is simple, but other times you may need an expert. Seeking professional help ensures your lawn mower gets the right fix and avoids further damage.

When To Call A Technician

Knowing the right time to call a technician can save you time and money. Look for these signs:

  • Strange noises: Unusual sounds from the mower may indicate internal issues.
  • No start at all: Even after troubleshooting, the mower won’t rumble to life.
  • Frequent stalling: If the mower stops often during use, a tech should have a look.
  • Visible damage: Cracks or dents on the body or blades can worsen over time.

Maintaining Your Lawn Mower Post-repair

After a repair, proper maintenance keeps your mower running smoothly. Follow these tips:

  • Clean regularly: Remove dirt, grass, and debris after each use.
  • Check the oil: Replace or top up engine oil to keep parts lubricated.
  • Inspect blades: Sharp blades ensure a clean cut and less strain on the engine.
  • Store correctly: Keep your mower in a dry, sheltered place to prevent rust.

Preventing Future Issues

Nothing spoils a day of yard work like a lawn mower that won’t start. If your mower quit after running out of gas, you might wonder why it’s being stubborn even after a refill.

To avoid this frustration in the future, let’s talk about how to keep your mower running strong all season long.

Regular Maintenance Schedule

Just like any other machine, regular care keeps your lawn mower in top form. Setting a maintenance schedule ensures you won’t miss important upkeep tasks. Here’s a quick checklist to follow:

  • Check the oil level before each use and change it annually.
  • Inspect the air filter monthly and replace as needed.
  • Sharpen the blades every season for a cleaner cut.
  • Clean the underside of the mower to prevent rust and debris build-up.

Sticking to this routine will help prevent many common issues that could otherwise lead to starting problems.

Tips For Proper Mower Storage

When you’re done mowing, how you store your mower can make a big difference. Use these tips to keep it safe and ready for the next use:

Storage Tip Benefit
Empty the fuel tank Prevents old gas from gumming up the system
Disconnect the spark plug Ensures safety and preserves the plug’s life
Store in a dry place Avoids rust and moisture damage
Cover the mower Keeps dust and pests out

Following these steps will help you get a smooth start, whether it’s next week or next season.

Frequently Asked Questions

Why Wont My Lawn Mower Start After Running For Awhile?

A lawn mower may refuse to start after running due to overheating, fuel supply issues, vapor lock, or a faulty spark plug. Ensure proper cooling, check fuel lines, and inspect the spark plug for common fixes.

Is It Bad To Run A Lawn Mower Out Of Gas?

Running a lawn mower out of gas can cause no harm but may allow air into the fuel lines, potentially leading to starting difficulties. Regularly maintain your mower to prevent issues.

How Do You Start A Lawn Mower With Bad Gas?

To start a lawn mower with bad gas, first drain the old fuel. Refill with fresh gas and check the fuel filter. Clean or replace it if necessary. Prime the engine according to your mower’s instructions, then pull the start cord to begin operation.

Why Wont My Troy Bilt Riding Mower Start After Running Out Of Gas?

Your Troy-Bilt riding mower may not start due to air trapped in the fuel system after running out of gas. Prime the carburetor, then attempt to start it again. If issues persist, check the spark plug and fuel filter for possible obstructions or damage.


Embarking on lawn mower troubleshooting can be a simple task. The steps outlined provide a clear path to reviving your machine after a gas shortage.

Regular maintenance and checks will prevent future hiccups. Armed with these tips, you’re set for a smooth mowing season.

Remember, patience and precision are the keys to success.


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