How to Convert a Pull Start Generator to an Electric Starter With a Kit

Written by elizabeth sobiski
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How to Convert a Pull Start Generator to an Electric Starter With a Kit
Generators can be easier to start with an electric switch instead of a pull cord. (Hemera Technologies/PhotoObjects.net/Getty Images)

It is possible to convert a pull start generator to an electric start, which will make the generator easier to start. Some engines have kits available to do this conversion. Kits are available for Briggs and Stratton, Kohler and some Tecumseh engines. While all engines are different, the basic idea of adding an electric starter is the same. For demonstration purposes, adding a 120-volt, gear drive starter to a Tecumseh engine is described here.

Skill level:
Moderate

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Things you need

  • Tecumseh engine powered generator
  • Starter kit and instructions
  • Wrenches

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Instructions

  1. 1

    Inspect the generator engine. Look at where the starter would have been mounted if the generator came with one. You should see mounting bosses, or holes where the starter will attach. In some cases these are plugged with a bit of plastic, which can be removed to get to the bosses.

  2. 2

    Remove the shroud and look to see if the flywheel has a ring gear. If it does, then the starter can be installed. If not, a new flywheel with a ring gear is needed.

  3. 3

    Insert the starter into the flywheel and ring gear assembly. Attach the starter to the generator with the supplied bolts.

  4. 4

    Plug the starter in with its supplied extension cord. Press the starter button and start the generator. Unplug the starter when not in use.

Tips and warnings

  • If mounting bosses are not present, the generator cannot be converted to an electric start.

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