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Small Engines (Lawn Mowers, etc.)/scotts s2048 (john deer) riding mower won't start


This started happening towards the end of last year's season.  This year, I can't start it at all.

Towards the end of last year, I would turn the ignition and the engine would spin but never start.  I tried for several minutes.  If I left the mower for 30 min or so, then I could start it.  It's as if it was flooded.

However, it started doing this every week.  Can the mower be flooded when starting it cold?  It would spin and spin when cold starting, so I guess that could flood the engine if fuel is going in but it won't start.

This season, I have not been able to start it at all.  It still spins but won't start.  I replaced the fuel filter and fuel pump in case it wasn't getting enough fuel, but it didn't sound like that was the problem.  After putting the new filter on, I could see fuel flow through it as I tried to start it so I think the pump is ok (which it should be since it's new).

I pulled the spark plug out and watched it spark as I turned the ignition so that seems ok too.

I'm just guessing now and am not sure what to try replacing next.

Does you carburetor have a fuel shut-off solenoid on it?

Did you drain and refill the fuel tank with fresh fuel less than 2 months old?

You could have old fuel causing the problem or the fuel shut-off solenoid might not be working.

Will the engine start if you prime the engine with FRESH gasoline by squirting fuel into the carburetor?  Just remove the air filter to squirt fuel into the carburetor...just use a SMALL primer bottle with just a LITTLE fuel in it to reduce the chance of a fire if the engine was to backfire.


Small Engines (Lawn Mowers, etc.)

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Eric A. Jones


Lawnmower Repair . Certified Master Service Technician from B&S. Have 23 years experience on B&S, Lawn Chief, Weed Eater, Echo, Peerless, Wheel Horse, Snapper, Atlas, MTD, McCulloch, Homelite and many other numerous brands. Specialize in electrical repair.


Born and raised in the midwest. Started tinkering with engines when I was about 14 on my Suzuki RM-80. I began lawn mower repair at a small hardware store. I knew absolutely nothing. I read lots of repair manuals and met an older fellow who taught me many lessons. I continued working on small engines through high school and paid my way through college working on mowers at the same hardware store. Decided to get away from the midwest and mower repair so I joined the Air Force. I repaired air traffic control electronic equipment and ended up in Hawaii where I got a part time job at Small Engine Clinic. I gained a lot of experience from the Small Engine Clinic and had a blast repairing small engines. I then took the Briggs and Stratton Master Service Technician test and earned my MST. I then traveled to Wisconsin where I attended the factory update training seminar and received formal training. Continued working on mowers part time as I completed 20 years of military. Retired from the military on a Friday and continued in the lawn and garden industry the next Monday.

MAS Aerospace Operations BA Mathematics AAS Electronic Communications AAS Electronic Technology

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