My lawn mower will start for a few seconds then dies.

this is a 4 hp KGRO Power Pro with a Tecumseh engine TVS115 or 56045B. It has a quick start primer on it. Plenty of gas, good spark, just won't keep running. Please advise. Thanks.

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I found on my mower the gas was old. Drained tank and float can , fill with fresh gas zoom. Also the gas with alcohol very hard on small engines mainly trimmers, some gas treatments like STA-BIL have a alcohol treatment, it is the blue one

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my mower is a MTD Briggs twin 20 hp and it has started to do the same as described. I removed the carb and found nothing wrong anywhere. The engine starts great but refuses to run when release the switch from start.

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Its a carburetor issue. Check on youtube for how to's to clean your specific model/tyoe of carburetor.

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Mix some Seafoam gas treatment in with your gas. Run for a minute. The Seafoam will clean the carb and the rest of the fuel system. It will run like new after you do this.

https://seafoamsales.com/small-engines/

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The problem is in the carburator.

You need to clean the carb thouroughly with spray carb & choke cleaner. You need to purchase a kit #631021B from a Tecumseh dealer.

When you take the fuel bowl off, notice about a half inch above the bottom of the pipe leading down into the bowl, there is a very small hole located in the threads that the bowl retaining plug was removed from. That hole is the Low Speed Jet and needs to be cleaned using a fine wire. I use a wire removed from a steel wire brush with a small bend about 1/4 inch from the end. Then use lots of carb cleaner in all the holes you see.

The neopreme seat where the inlet needle sits needs to be removed also. I insert a small screwdriver into the hole, taking care not to scrape the sides and give the old rubber seat a little twist, which loosenes it in the hole. Then a little shot of compressed air in the fuel inlet tube simply blows the old seat out. Use safety glasses & take care where you aim! The new seat has a little circle on one side and is smooth on the other. The side with the circle made into it goes into the hole first. It should come with an instruction sheet in the kit.

There is no vacuum advance or choke sensor on Tecumseh engines, so you don't need to worry about that.

Good luck!

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Might also be a vacum advance problem or a choke sensor problem...

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rebuilding is the right thing to do,but if you can start the machine put a little fuel injecter cleaner in the gas tank. start engine a few times and let sit over night. works 9 out of 10 times

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Same problem as others with Craftsman mower w/Tecumseh carburetor starting up but not staying running for a few seconds or sometimes a few minutes. Discounted ignition as problem as it was clearly a fuel issue so tried all usual tricks of checking fuel cap venting / fresh fuel / standard carb rebuilding [float needle and seat] and cleanout all ports /vents / metering screw, etc as recommended by Chris on this forum. Still no joy and now clearly not fuel not reaching carb problem as plenty of fuel in bowl when removed. Finally figured it out. Mower had been sitting for winter after using gas with no stabilizer, but I couldn't find any deteriorated rubber goods until I looked up into jet tube [this is the tube into which the plug holding the fuel bowl on screws into]. About 3/8" inside that tube is a small rubber O-ring which the plug seals against when tight. It has to form a seal to keep pulling fuel through the tiny holes in the plug up into the jet tube and into the body of the carburetor. When mower has been running for a bit, too much air gets sucked in and stops fuel from being pulled up into carburetor. I changed out the tiny O-ring and problem solved. It is really difficult to get the remains of the deteriorated O-ring out. I ended up using a tiny jeweler's screwdriver and digging it out in pieces making sure none of the pieces plugged up anything else. Just makes me realize how important it is to use gas without alcohol (even if expensive) or some type of stabilizer to prevent the alcohol from damaging rubber goods.

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My craftsman rider will only start and run with that air cleaner off and fully choke by hand. When I remove my hand it dies!

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How about the stater coil?

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I have often had this exact symptom on an old beast of a mower. It was also a Tecumseh, but not sure the engine brand really matters. In my case, it was water in the fuel which settled to the bottom of the carburetor float bowl. I could do a quick fix by just loosening the nut fitting on the bottom of the bowl enough to let the water and then some gas drain out. Water is heavier than gas so it sinks below the gas. Usually that was enough to solve the problem. A better fix is to remove the carb and clean it, and make sure that the tank is as clean as you can get it too.

Yes, fuel with alcohol is a problem, probably explains why I had this problem once or twice a year.

Our local mower repair shop will do a quick turn-around on carb cleaning / rebuild if I bring in the carb removed from the mower. In busy season, I get the carb back the next day. If they're slow, I can pick it up in the afternoon. Maybe that's just because they like me, it's certainly not because I'm a big spender! They replace the needle and gaskets, and use an ultrasound device to clean out the carb internal plumbing.

That said, there's a spring on the carb on my machine that I once managed to attach incorrectly, which causes the very same problem. I can't describe the spring, but a good repair shop will show you how to connect the springs and linkages on your machine.

I'll bet you have one or the other of these issues.

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On most gas engines there is a sensor on the main gas supply line that measures the air to gas mixture. When this devise starts to get old it thinks that there is not enough gas and applies more gas to the air/gas mixture flooding the engine with gas.

-Me-

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So how do you fix this problem

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