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Hank F.
Hank F., Technician
Category: Small Engine
Satisfied Customers: 15281
Experience:  Certified on Onan and Generac generators
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I have an MTD snow blower with a Tecumseh HSSK50 LH195SA engine

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I have an MTD snow blower with a Tecumseh HSSK50 LH195SA engine on it. The motor was hard to start and didn't seem to have much compression when I bought the blower used. The complaint the previous owner had was that the engine would bog down and die in very little snow (1-2").

I have replaced the rings, honed the cylinder and replaced the carburetor with no improvement to starting or performance under load. What am I missing?

Any help you can provide is greatly appreciated.

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First, did you do a compression check on the engine?

If so, what was the reading?


Have you adjusted the valves to the proper specs?


Customer: replied 6 years ago.

Haven't done a compression check yet and I have not messed with the valves other than removing them, cleaning and reinstalling during the rebuild when I replaced the rings.


What PSI should I be seeing for good compression?


How do you adjust the valves? There are no adjustable parts from what I saw during the rebuild.

Compression should be a minimum of 75 psi - and preferably over 100.


Valves on this engine are only adjustable by grinding the face of the stem down.

These valves are not interchangeable - the intake and exhaust valves are different. Did you ensure that you replaced them in the correct place?


Would you be interested in a copy of the service manual for this engine?


Customer: replied 6 years ago.


Thank you for the compression info.


I am sure the valves are in the right places I was careful to not get them mixed up. What should clearance between the valve stem and the lifter be?


I could definately use a copy of the service manual.

Give me 5 minutes to upload the manual for you.


For valve clearance, intake should be .004", and exhaust .008"


Click here to download the manual.

When the 4shared page opens, scroll down and click on the blue 'Download Now' button.

This will save you about $20 by not having to purchase one.


Edited by Hank F. on 12/30/2010 at 5:22 PM EST
Hank F. and other Small Engine Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 6 years ago.


You have been very helpful today. I will check into the compression and valve clearance this weekend. Thank you for the link to the Tech Manual I'm sure that will help guide me going ahead. Hopefully I can get this snow blower going again before another storm hits.




For your sake, I hope so too.

Good luck with it, and please let me know if you have any other questions.


Customer: replied 6 years ago.


I just wanted to let you know that I followed your suggestions regarding checking compression and valve clearance on my Tecumseh HSSK50 motor. Compression was only 50 psi and the exhaust valve had 0 clearance.


I had to have .014" ground off the exhaust valve stem to provide the .008" clearance needed.


I reassembled the motor last night, put it all back together and it started right up on the 3rd pull! The motor ran like a top and has plenty of power now. Thank you very much for all your help.



Good deal! I'm really glad to hear that!

Thanks for the update!