Small Engine Problems? Ask an Engine Mechanic for Answers ASAP
Some of the really old engines had a carburetor drain on them. This had a small plunger that had a spring on it that a person could push and drain the carb bown. They haven't used this for over 20 years. If the rubber gasket on the drain...inside the carb is bad, it will leak.
Most likley what you are talking about is the main bowl nut or the main jet nut.
If it is leaking gas from there, it has to be one of four things.
1. The gasket is bad under the nut.
2. The bowl is cracked or has a hole in it.
3. It is not leaking from there at all, it is leaking out the atmosheric vent hole in the carburetor and running down the carb and since that part is the lowes part on the carb, that is where it drips from.
4. You could have a bad bown gasket.
Most likely the problem is that the engine has been sitting for a while and the caburetor has gotten dirty or gummed up from the old gas.
This causes the needle valve to bypass fuel and leaks out.
As engines sit or get older, fuel that is left in the carburetor can turn to gum and varnish and cause this and other problems. Also, any gasoline that was left in a gas can for a period of more than 30 days must be discarded because it also has begun to turn to varnish.
Today's gasolines contain MTBE and alcohol. (Ethanol) They turn to "Junk and garbage" very quickly. Alcohol is partially water (H2O). And they call it "Oxygenated fuels! It is the oxygen that breaks down the organic compounds in the fuel and turns the gas to "Garbage" (Gum and varnish) The fuels we had just a few years ago had no alcohol in it and would store for longer periods of time before going stale... and fuel stabilizers do almost nothing to prevent the fuel from going bad with the changes in today's fuels
Do not buy gas from the "Discount" Stations. The discount stations get a reduced price on gas because they may be buying fuel that is nearly 30 days old already. You may be getting fuel that's nearly stale right from the pump when buying from a discount station. Purchase your fuel from the well-known stations such as Shell, BP, Sonoco, Phillips 66 etc.
More than 70% of all of our repairs in our lawn mower business are due to this same issue. You most likely have dirt, gum, varnish...etc in your carburetor plugging up the small passageways and jets in the carburetor.
The carburetor must be removed from the engine. Clean all parts with carburetor cleaner and blow out all the small holes and passageways with compressed air. Remove all of the non-metallic parts since the carburetor cleaner will cause them to be disfigured decompose and plug the carburetor as time goes on.
Wash the carburetor cleaner off of the metal parts by washing them in warm, soapy water then rinsing with clean water. Dry them by blowing it off with compressed air. Make sure that all the passageways are blown dry before reassembling.
Reassemble using a NEW carburetor rebuild kit.
DO NOT TRY TO REASSEMBLE WITHOUT USING A COMPLTE CARBURETOR KIT! You will just end up having to do the job again.
ALWAYS clean the fuel tank and replace the fuel line when doing this repair or you may have to do it all over again. The inside of the fuel line disintegrates over time and these small pieces of rubber will plug up the carburetor too. Dirt and water from a dirty fuel tank will also plug up the carburetor. Find the Model, type and serial or code numbers off of the engine and take them to your local dealer to get the carburetor repair kit.
If you do the work yourself, take pictures or at least make a drawing of where all the linkages, gaskets, and component parts go. Correct reassembly is critical.
If the carburetor still doesn't work correctly, you may have to take it to someone who has an "Ultra-sonic" cleaning machine. This machine uses carb cleaner and ultrasonic vibrations to get the very small passageways clean when traditional methods fail.
If you don't feel comfortable with this kind of repair I would suggest sending it to a reputable shop.
If it is the bowl nut as I suspect, you have to remove that and the gasket is located under that nut or screw as you call it. You do not have to remove the bowl unless you want to clean out the junk inside the carburetor. You can just remove the screw and the bowl should just stay on from the friction . If it comes off, it's no big deal. Just put it back on.
The problem probably is not that gasket though, it is probably one ofthe other items I mentioned...such as the dirty carburetor.