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My 12 year old scotts (john Deere) riding tractor started to…

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my 12 year old scotts...
my 12 year old scotts (john Deere) riding tractor started to lose power at the end of an acre mowing job. power would start to die and then it would surge, producing black smoke exhaust. this would happen through a number of cycles. finally when I shut the engine off, I could not restart it. For point of reference fuel, fuel filter, air filter, and plug are all new. is it carb or fuel pump?
Submitted: 3 years ago.Category: Small Engine
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Answered in 3 minutes by:
5/30/2015
Technician: Donald, Small Engine Technician replied 3 years ago
Donald
Donald, Small Engine Technician
Category: Small Engine
Satisfied Customers: 2,480
Experience: I have 25+ years of experience repairing 2 & 4 cycle engines
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Hello and thank you for choosing Just Answer. My name is ***** ***** I will do my very best to get you the answer you need to your question.
What brand is your engine?
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Customer reply replied 3 years ago
Intec / Briggs and Stratton
Technician: Donald, Small Engine Technician replied 3 years ago
Thanks for this information. Do you have any carburetor cleaner in a can, or starting fluid? If so, spray a small burst directly into your carburetor, to see if your engine will start up briefly. This will confirm whether or not you are getting spark to your spark plug.
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Customer reply replied 3 years ago
I have run out of both of those liquids and the stores are closed here now but it sounds like a good idea for tomorrow. If I get spark and it starts to pop over what then? Or if no spark I was going to pull the spark plug tomorrow morning and see if there was anything going on there
Technician: Donald, Small Engine Technician replied 3 years ago
If your engine starts up and runs briefly, after you spray carburetor cleaner into your carburetor, this means you are getting spark to your spark plug. At this point, I would focus on a fuel or carburetor related problem. First check your fuel shut off solenoid, to see if it is working properly. It should click each time you cycle your ignition switch on and off.
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Technician: Donald, Small Engine Technician replied 3 years ago
There is a spring loaded plunger inside your fuel shut off solenoid. It must retract when your ignition switch is on, to allow fuel to flow throughout your carburetor.
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Technician: Donald, Small Engine Technician replied 3 years ago
Keep in mind that black smoke is a sign of your engine running rich. So , if all of the previous tests passes, then check your carburetor. It may need a really good cleaning.
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Technician: Donald, Small Engine Technician replied 3 years ago
Also check your valve clearances.
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Technician: Donald, Small Engine Technician replied 3 years ago
If you determine that you are not getting spark to your spark plug, remove the cover from your engine, and then remove the small black kill wire from your ignition coil. Spin your engine over again, with your kill wire off of your ignition coil, and check again for spark. If you still do not get a spark, then your ignition coil is at fault.
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Customer reply replied 3 years ago
In taking the air filter off I noticed inside the engine a very fine wire spring looks to be on connected on the other end could this be the problem? What is this spring called?
Customer reply replied 3 years ago
I mean the spring is unconnected
Technician: Donald, Small Engine Technician replied 3 years ago
This is your governor spring. It will not prevent your engine from starting.
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Customer reply replied 3 years ago
There are two springs involved here are you sure that fine wire one will not make any difference?
Technician: Donald, Small Engine Technician replied 3 years ago
What are the model, and type numbers for your engine? I would like to take a look at a break down of your engine. That spring does need to be attached on both ends, but your engine should at least start up without it attached.
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Customer reply replied 3 years ago
It started on its own this morning without me doing anything to it. However after I shut it off and tried to restart it it would not start again. Thoughts?
Customer reply replied 3 years ago
It is model number L 1742 the engine serial number is ***** f 707 011 ze1
Customer reply replied 3 years ago
When I tried to restart it it looked like it was shooting gas vapor up through the carburetor air intake area
Technician: Donald, Small Engine Technician replied 3 years ago
How long did your engine run before you shut it off? We need to determine if you are getting spark to your spark plug, during the times when your engine will not re-start.
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Customer reply replied 3 years ago
The engine ran less than 30 seconds before I shut it off
Customer reply replied 3 years ago
Just a note before I started the engine this morning I did not use any carburetor cleaner or starting fluid to get it going
Technician: Donald, Small Engine Technician replied 3 years ago
Can you check to see if you are getting spark to your spark plug?
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Customer reply replied 3 years ago
Yes I just pulled the spark plug and ground is it and turned it over and I got a brilliant consistent spark however when I pulled it it was quite wet
Customer reply replied 3 years ago
It also looked like I was getting quite a bit of gas vapor blowing out of the spark plug hole so it looks like atomized fuel was being dispensed into the cylinder
Technician: Donald, Small Engine Technician replied 3 years ago
Are you familiar with checking your valve settings? Based upon what we have discussed so far, your valves very likely needs to be adjusted.
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Customer reply replied 3 years ago
Do you mean the intake and exhaust valves?
Customer reply replied 3 years ago
Where would I get the information to what to adjust them to?
Technician: Donald, Small Engine Technician replied 3 years ago
Yes, I am referring to your intake and exhaust valves.
Intake Valve = .003"-.005"
Exhaust Valve = .005"-.007"
You will check and adjust your valves, when your piston is 1/4" past top dead center, on your compression stroke. Both valves should be closed at this point.
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Customer reply replied 3 years ago
I found a YouTube video explaining how to do this in detail to my Briggs and Stratton engine I'll do this shortly the engine has over 400 hours on it and I've never done this maintenance procedure.
Technician: Donald, Small Engine Technician replied 3 years ago
Thanks for letting me know. Take your time, and you should be able to accomplish this task. Start by checking your valve clearances first, to confirm if your settings are out of spec., then go from there.
Let me know what happens.
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Customer reply replied 3 years ago
Hi I adjusted the valves but they weren't off very much to begin with and now I still can't start the tractor they were very clean inside a couple of bolts were loose on the valve cover but that's all
Technician: Donald, Small Engine Technician replied 3 years ago
Did you get a chance to purchase a can of carburetor cleaner? If not, put about a teaspoon of fuel into carburetor to see if your engine will start.
Have you checked your fuel shut off solenoid?
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Customer reply replied 3 years ago
Yes I purchased the can of carburetor cleaner but have not spread it into the carburetor opening yet. I have not checked the solenoid because I wasn't sure how to do that procedurally as well as locate the solenoid
Technician: Donald, Small Engine Technician replied 3 years ago
Okay ...
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Customer reply replied 3 years ago
Spray the carburetor cleaner in the intake hole but was still unable to start the tractor I'll have to check the solenoid on Monday this is Been a much bigger project than i realized
Technician: Donald, Small Engine Technician replied 3 years ago
Thank you for letting me know. On Monday, check to see if you are still getting spark to your spark plug. Please keep me posted on your progress.
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Customer reply replied 3 years ago
hi Donald I was able to start my mower today I changed out the spark plug the new one that I had put in fell apart so I put the old one in Regapped it. however the mower runs extremely uneven and very rich black smoke I was able to cut the lawn and it got better as I did it more but it still is not running right any suggestions
Customer reply replied 3 years ago
you mention that if I was running very rich the carburetor might need a good cleaning how far do I go with this and how to do I take it apart?
Technician: Donald, Small Engine Technician replied 3 years ago
I will be away from my computer until after 5:00 pm central time today. I can assist you at that time. I am replying to you via my mobile phone.
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Customer reply replied 3 years ago
some of the symptoms point into a blown head gasket. how can I diagnose it without taking the engine head off whether this is so? I've seen some blown head gaskets on the YouTube videos for my model engine that from visual inspection do not look blown.
Technician: Donald, Small Engine Technician replied 3 years ago
To check for a blown head gasket, you will need a tool called a Leak Down Tester. Remove the fuel bowl from your carburetor, to see if you have any sediments inside your fuel bowl.
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Customer reply replied 3 years ago
okay I'll take the carburetor off and clean it tomorrow and see if that makes any difference
Technician: Donald, Small Engine Technician replied 3 years ago
That will be great! Keep me posted on your progress. Thanks.
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Customer reply replied 3 years ago
I am unable to figure out how to disassemble the carburetor to clean it. there are two bolts that hold it together and I was able to remove the nuts but I can't remove the screws even after pounding them with a hammerpossibly I can take the tank ball off but I need a special tool to unbolt the screw jet at at the bottom of the bowl.any suggestions for this type of special tool that I need?
Technician: Donald, Small Engine Technician replied 3 years ago
The part you are calling a jet, is your fuel shut off solenoid. You will need a thin 1/2" open end wrench, to remove this part. I have ground down an inexpensive wrench to use for this purpose. After you remove your fuel shut off solenoid, you will be able to remove your fuel bowl.
I am not understanding which nuts you are referring to.
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Customer reply replied 3 years ago
hopefully I will take the carburetor bolt off tonight and look at the bowl. I rented a compression checker and I had pretty good pressure in the cylinder about 90 to 100 pounds. Just wanted to let you know about that.
Technician: Donald, Small Engine Technician replied 3 years ago
Thank you for keeping me posted.
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Customer reply replied 3 years ago
hi Donald I ground down a wrench to remove the carb bowl looks fine I did not clean it. I also replaced the spark plug with an Autolite XS 3924 DP but now things are even worse the engine does not turn over just makes a buzzing sound where the starter is
Technician: Donald, Small Engine Technician replied 3 years ago
As for the buzzing noise, check to see if your battery is still fully charged. Also remove your spark plug to see if your engine will spin freely with your spark plug out. After you remove your spark plug, check to see if there is any fuel in your cylinder, on top of your piston.
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Customer reply replied 3 years ago
ok I'll get the battery charged up if need be tonight and see if I can run the engine with the spark plugremoved. how do I tell if the battery is not charged properly because it should still read 12 volts whether charged or uncharged correct?
Customer reply replied 3 years ago
I wanted to also tell you when I reconnected the wire to the solenoid on the carburetor there was a little spark before I fully connected it.
Technician: Donald, Small Engine Technician replied 3 years ago
The spark is common if you attached the wire, when your ignition switch was on. If your starter is still humming after you remove your spark plug, then your battery could need to be charged. We just need to confirm that your engine is not locked.
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Customer reply replied 3 years ago
I was able to rotate the engine by hand and I tested the battery it was at 12 volts so after a few attempts I was able to start the engine this morning and ran it for about 5 minutes I did not tested under power it seemed to run OK at high rpm but it wanted to sputter and die at low rpm. thoughts?
Customer reply replied 3 years ago
hi Donald good morning any other thoughts you might have on what to do about this engine lawn tractor engine of mine?
Technician: Donald, Small Engine Technician replied 3 years ago
Thank you for this information. After you removed your fuel solenoid, did you go any farther with cleaning your carburetor? At this point, it will be great if you can remove your carburetor, disassemble it, soak it, and clean it thoroughly.
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Customer reply replied 3 years ago
I'd be happy to do that but I'm unable to get the two bolts off that goes that hold the carburetor together I can get the nuts off but I can't get the bolts off what how do I do this?
Technician: Donald, Small Engine Technician replied 3 years ago
I am not sure which two bolts are are referring to. I am attaching some carburetor information for you. Carburetor Information - Click Here
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Technician: Donald, Small Engine Technician replied 3 years ago
We can continue from here. Thanks!
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