Reasons Why a Lawn Mower Won't Start

Written by amanda rumble
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Reasons Why a Lawn Mower Won't Start
A lawnmower that won't start is frustrating. (Jupiterimages/ Images)

Imagine going out to mow your lawn on a warm and sunny day only to discover that your lawnmower won't start. Don't call a professional or give up on your plans to get your lawn cut just yet. Diagnose the problem using the most common situations and solutions to fix your mower.

Spark Plug Wire

Ensure that your spark plug wire is plugged in, especially if this is the first time in the season you're using your mower. See that the plug is gapped and installed properly. If there are no problems with the spark plug wire, you may need to replace either the points, if you have an older machine, or an ignition module if you have a relatively new mower.


Your mower needs fuel to run. Ensure that you have enough fuel to start and keep the engine running. If the mower has been sitting for awhile, siphon the fuel out and replace it with fresh fuel. Inspect your fuel line for kinks or holes. Replace your fuel filter if it is clogged or hasn't been changed in awhile.


The battery helps get the mower up and going. Charge the battery and inspect the terminals for corrosion and to see if they are properly attached. If the battery charges but doesn't hold the charge, it is most likely bad and needs to be replaced.

Runs and Dies

If your mower starts and runs for a moment before dying, you may need to clean or rebuild the carburettor. The mower also may have an air leak in the engine, so ensure that the gaskets are complete and all bolts are appropriately tightened.

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