How to Replace the Pull Rope on a Snapper Lawn Mower

Updated February 21, 2017

Snapper manufactures a number of popular riding and walk-behind lawnmowers. These mowers are powered by Briggs and Stratton engines, and can be equipped with either an electric starter, or a pull rope starter on smaller engines. The pull rope used to start these smaller engines can become damaged over time and break. Replacing the pull rope on a Snapper lawnmower can be done in just a few minutes.

Disconnect the spark plug wire from the spark plug by pulling on the black rubber boot that covers the tip of the spark plug.

Loosen the three bolts that hold the starter shroud onto the engine. Lift the starter shroud off the engine and place it upside down on a work table.

Hold the starter shroud with one hand, and turn the pulley inside the starter shroud counter-clockwise until it stops turning. Clamp the pulley in place with a pair of wide-jaw locking pliers.

Pull on the knot found in the knot hole near the centre of the pulley with a pair of needlenose pliers to remove the broken pull rope.

Insert the end of the new rope (with the handle on the other end) into the hole in the starter shroud. Guide the rope into the pulley and toward the knot hole. When the rope appears in the knot hole, grab it with a pair of needlenose pliers and pull out about a foot of rope.

Tie a knot in the exposed end of the rope. Singe the end of the rope with a match or lighter to prevent fraying.

Pull on the rope from outside the starter shroud to firmly seat the knot into the knot hole. Remove the wide-jaw locking pliers to release the spring-loaded pulley, allowing the rope to recoil around the pulley.

Place the starter shroud back onto the engine, and reinstall the bolts to secure the shroud to the engine. Reconnect the spark plug wire onto the spark plug.


For longer life, always use Briggs & Stratton-approved replacement starter rope.


To prevent the engine from firing accidentally, always disconnect the spark plug wire from the spark plug before working on the engine.

Things You'll Need

  • New starter rope with handle
  • Socket set
  • Wide-jaw locking pliers
  • Needlenose pliers
  • Cigarette lighter or matches
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About the Author

Chris Baylor has been writing about various topics, focusing primarily on woodworking, since 2006. You can see his work in publications such as "Consumer's Digest," where he wrote the 2009 Best Buys for Power Tools and the 2013 Best Buys for Pressure Washers.