Tecumseh snow king engine won't start

rocketdudeAugust 24, 2008

I have a tecumseh snow king LH318SA that won't start (not even briefly). It has been used only about 4 times and hasn't been started since the winter. I tried to start it today and it won't start. To me it seems the primer is just moving air. I cover the primer hole pressed it and held (a couple of times). To verify I removed the tank and submerged the fuel line in a small bottle of gas. I pressed the primer again and again but it didn't seem to suck any gas out of the cup. I traced the primer line to the carb and squeezed the tube where it connects to the carb and pressed the primer and I did feel suction (which I think means the primer button works). So if I have suction at the carb why wouldn't it be sucking fuel from the fuel line? Does the carb automatically stop the primer from sucking gas if it is full? I haven't looked at the ignition as a source of the problem since the engine has only been used 4 times. The carb is made of metal with a bolt on the bottom. Any ideas would be appreciated.

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Keeping in mind that fuel has a shelf life of 30 -90 days (depending on how it is cared for) is it likely that it has old fuel down in the carb and that the carb needs to be cleaned out and fuel replaced w/ fresh?

    Bookmark   August 24, 2008 at 5:29PM
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I know this sounds simple but,Make sure your red plastic key is in the correct position and not pulled out,it won't start without the key in,also Check to see if there is a fuel shut off.If there isn't,try putting a small amount of fuel in the carb throat you'll have to remove the air box housing OR spray some starter fluid into the air box and see if you get it to kick over.

    Bookmark   August 24, 2008 at 5:39PM
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This engine is a snowblower engine and does not have an airbox. Should I spray fluid in the opening where the choke flap opens and closes? The red key is in, full throttle, and full choke. the fact that it doesn't ignite at all makes this a mystery.

    Bookmark   August 24, 2008 at 6:13PM
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check to see if you have a spark,pull plug,snap plug wire back on and ground it against the engine head,don't hold onto it,pull start and look for spark.If you have a spark,put the plug back in and spray starter fluid into the carb with choke flap open ,then close the choke before pulling the start rope..The airbox I was refering to is the square housing that your throttle and choke levers are mounted on..You're correct there is no air cleaner on a Tecumseh Snowking.

    Bookmark   August 24, 2008 at 6:42PM
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I have spark. Does that mean the ignition is good? I am going to get starter fluid tomorrow.

    Bookmark   August 24, 2008 at 7:49PM
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I took the bowl off, and only a couple of drops of gas was in it. I primed it with the bowl off and no gas is coming out of the carb. So how does gas actually get in the bowl?

    Bookmark   August 25, 2008 at 10:25AM
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The fuel comes in thru the float valve above the float. SO, if the in line fuel valve is open (if equipped) jiggle the float a bit and see if fuel then flows. It must work freely. If this has set w/ fuel in it since winter, it may be stuck. You could try gently blowing thru the fuel cap with a slit in a paper towel and a touch of mouth pressure- or very lite air pressure to help things along. Too much pressure and you can dislodge the seat. If you get a good flow, new fuel and a tad of your favorite fuel system cleaner. Clean the bowl and clean out the small holes in the bowl nut. If it is really gunked up- you may need to go further.

    Bookmark   August 25, 2008 at 10:51AM
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Yes, I figured this out once I took the bowl off. The float was stuck to the top. As soon as I jiggled the float it fell down and the gas started pouring out. Thanks for your help.

    Bookmark   August 25, 2008 at 11:17AM
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The tap with a screw driver handle against carb bowl "trick" may work if it happens again.

    Bookmark   August 25, 2008 at 6:28PM
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Many thanks to Mr Kapaun for reminding me of the screw driver handle upside the carb bowl trick. On and off over the last two days, I'd been messing around with a year old Ariens 624e with a Tecumseh Snow King engine. I didn't put the engine to rest in late March as I should have... Five taps, two pulls and the engine kicked in. Too cool. Thanks again! Bill

    Bookmark   November 26, 2008 at 4:18PM
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I also need to thank Mr Kapaun from way back in 08 for that tap the screw driver against the carb bowl trick for my snowblower. I messed with that thing all day. New plug, (filled up the gas after pulling for an hour in the dark thinking I saw gas) and even replaced the cord after it broke from too much pulling-and it was worn out. Thanks! And I WILL prepare it for the following year next spring. Ready for that big snow dump we are supposed to get tomorrow.

    Bookmark   December 11, 2010 at 8:14PM
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Have an ATV mounted Agri-Fab snow blower with the Snow King and after spending days trying to find the air intake filter (could it possibly be at the choke butterfly valve in?) was relieved to learn here I wasn't going crazy and indeed it was.

I used the blower just two weekends ago when we had light snow and it started fine. Then, after our weekend blizzard, when I needed it the most, no start. Good spark, new plug, etc. Will try tapping the bowl. Spark plug is not wet when removed. It has fresh gas, had used it and had SeaFoam in it.

Have too big an area to use the walk behind snow blower.

Did I mention this was new earlier this year? Not happy they didn't sell it with electric start.

Is it possible to add this feature to this engine?


    Bookmark   December 13, 2010 at 12:52PM
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Interestingly enough, I placed a propane heater in my garage for 1.5 hours. At the end, I was able to pull start the engine. However, I cannot do this every time before I need to use this snow blower. I would have to get up at 3 in the morning in order to be able to have time to warm the engine up and then remove the snow on my driveway to go to work on time.

Electric start may allow it to spin fast enough, but I will try thinner oil in the meantime.

We are experiencing sub zero temps and I cannot do anything about outside temps in order to allow for easier starting.

    Bookmark   December 15, 2010 at 6:21PM
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