I will be glad to help you with this.
What is happening is that you have a small piece of 'trash' caught-up in the carburetors' needle and seat. The debris causes the needle not to seat all the way, and the result is that fuel runs continually into your carburetor bowl. That is why you saw it leaking out off the overflow after you shut it off. It also explains why the mower would act different on inclines and okay on level ground. The bowls was so full it would flood out the motor on inclines, and on level ground it would use enough of the fuel to keep lean.
The remedy is to clean the debris out. You can try to disconnect the fuel line that leads into the carburetor, and spray some carb-cleaner into the orifice to un-clog the debris. This works some of the time. If it does not, the carburetor will have to be taken apart, and the needle and seat cleaned or replaced.
In the picture above (typical), the bowl is #86, the float is #84, and the needle is #83.
Also, fuel filters are rather generic and has nothing to do with your carburetor overflowing.
I hope this helps, Rick
Yes, you CAN do this 'outside cleaning attempt' yourself. And no, the carb does not need to be taken off to do the inside cleaning. I will be glad to step you through each easy step.
The carb cleaner is nothing special, even WD-40 SPRAYED into the orifice works. The main thing is SPRAY. Some air might even work !
I can give you specific pics and instruction if you can give me the model/serial number from the engine.
Please don't accept my answer until your mower is running correctly.
Our Higher Power loves the Earth to be well manicured, and will help you in your attempt to beautify, Rick
Hello again Joe,
I wanted to first check and see if you have had time to try the 'outside cleaning procedure'.
You will know if it has been a success when you pour a small amount of fuel in, run it briefly and see no leaks under the carb.
That's GREAT news Joe !
I will look for the schematic, please give me the serial number once again without the # XXXXX front. The site thinks we are trying to share personal information, ( a no-no ) lol
In God we trust, Rick
Thank you for the accept !
The site still thinks we are trying to share personal information, so I will cross reference your OEM parts numbers to determine your exact model and TRY to find a drive belt diagram for you.
Best regards, Rick
I can probably find it with the first six numbers of the serial number.
There we go, be back soon, Rick
I have searched intently for a drive diagram, and have not had much luck. John Deere, who bought out Scotts, does not give me a parts diagram on your model. They should, however, be able to provide you with a one page print out of your drive diagram.
The best I was able to do was a cross-match to a Murray diagram ( which is not very good) http://bsintek.basco.com/MDEXResultsPages/PDFDisplayPage.aspx?fileName=heCBEN8dwOZrE5CGh5jbp796Dq
Let your John Deere dealer know that you will be happy to buy the belt from him/her if they will provide an instruction sheet.
Hope this helps, and good luck, Rick
Joe, I see as I was posting my last answer, you have encountered a site problem. I will send this to customer service immediately.