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Outdoor power equipment is a source of aggravations for many. The simplicity of these machines is surprisingly simple. First most if not all manufacturers small engines (including riding mowers) are similar in that they are simple combustion engines. First, let’s look at the most prevalent problem-starting:

  1. Always use a middle-grade gas (89octane) these 2 points above the standard regular gas makes a huge difference. The extra octane provides a hotter and cleaner burn in these small carburetors.
  2. Check the oil level (4 cycle engines)
  3.  Treat the gas for this equipment with a quality gas treatment each time you fill the gas can.
  4. Be sure you use the correct ratio of oil to gas if you have 2 cycle tools.
  5. FOLLOW THE INSTRUCTIONS, if it is stated that you need to push the bulb 3 times or 10 times, that is what you do!
  6.  At the beginning or end of the season, purchase replacement spark plugs and air filters for each tool. Note: if you wait until the end of the season the prices of many of these items will be reduced.
  7.   Off-season no matter what the tool is: start them up several times during the offseason.  Insure that the blades (if there are blades) are sharp if you are unable to do it yourself, it is worth the money to have it done ( do it offseason).                              The average life of an outdoor power tool is 3 to 10 years, some smaller tools tend to burnout and require replacing the carburetor, this is a simple repair but best left to the professionals as adjustments need to made. The price of a small engine carburetor ranges from $20.00 to  $50.00 and more, add the cost of labor, your repair cost could start at $85.00 and go up. This is the basic maintenance for most gas-powered power tools.


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One Comment

    • smgm1comcastnet
    • Posted 01/19/2020 at 08:05 AMJan
    • Permalink

    Mike: another good informational write up, cool! Thankfully jim knows all this. His brother dave works on mowers and the like so he is really knowledgeable about those as well. Helps to have someone in the family who knows these things but not all do, like my neighbor who helps us with electronic stuff but with engines and the like, he knows not much. 🙂 glad you know all this as well.

    Paul, our brother-in-law, jim’s sister’s husband passed away a couple of days ago. It was good that he passed as toward the end he was in bad shape. Cancer. He had pancreatic cancer, had a whipple procedure done about 3 years ago and that gave him those year till now. Luckily he got to see all in the family during the holidays. He was a good man and will be missed by many.

    Hope all is well with you and barb. Miss you guys. Hope the holidays were good to you and you enjoyed a peaceful new years eve. Love susan p.s. time to book our flights I believe. 🙂


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