Another Craftsman Tractor Won't Start Thread

Craftsman_manMarch 20, 2014

I have read through the various threads and nothing seems to match my problem. I'm not exceptionally handy, so something obvious could easily be the solution and I would not know any better - just so you know who you're dealing with here!

I've had my LT3000 (B&S engine, 19.5 HP I think) since I bought it new in 2011. It's been in storage for about 18 months now. I changed the oil and ran it until the gas was empty before I put it in storage, but didn't do anything else to it. Only thing that has ever been changed on it is the oil. Everything else is factory original. I know, need to take better care of my toys.

I went to get it out this weekend and the battery was dead. Turn key and and nothing happened. So I went and got it charged overnight and load tested, told she was good as new.

Put battery back in and the engine gets turning, but it doesn't start. The motor is turning but not firing. Went back and got some starter spray. Fired the ether into the throat and when I turn the key now it sounds like it's running, but as soon as I stop spraying the engine cuts out.

What am I missing? I'd prefer to try other simple remidies before I need to pay someone to come do any serious work on it. Changing timing, etc. is over my head, so any suggestions about simple things I could try would be most appreciated.

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A couple things to correct on my original post. It's a 20hp B&S engine. I also replaced the fuel filter and changed the oil and oil filter before the 2012 season, so not everything is original! Put it in storage Fall of 2012, and this past weekend is the first time I've gotten back to it. Put 1 gallon of gas I had just purchased in the empty tank before attempting to start and finding battery was dead.

All help welcome, thanks again.

This post was edited by Craftsman_man on Thu, Mar 20, 14 at 16:15

    Bookmark   March 20, 2014 at 4:12PM
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Is this a 917.276813?

Is the carb fuel solenoid clicking when you turn the key ON/OFF?

Ditch the ether. it's too easy to overload it and break things on a relatively small engine.
Use carb cleaner.

    Bookmark   March 20, 2014 at 6:41PM
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Sounds like it isn't getting gas, Check the carb and make sure it's getting gas thru it.

    Bookmark   March 20, 2014 at 9:00PM
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Bill-will check model number this weekend and report back. Not sure about the clicking. I will listen. The engine is turning and is pretty loud, so I have not noticed any clicking on its own.

Jimmy. Makes sense that it isn't getting gas. How do I check the carb? As I said I'm not all that mechanically inclined, but have tools and can do if it is pretty simple.

    Bookmark   March 20, 2014 at 10:20PM
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when you first turn the ignition key to the "on" position,, you should hear a sharp click from the engine carb area - that is the fuel valve solenoid opening up.

Purchase a rattlecan of carb cleaner from an autoparts store (NOT Ether !!) - remove carb air cleaner - spray a shot or two directly down carb throat - immediately try to start engine normally.
If engine tries to run, you have a fuel delivery problem, If not, you have an ignition or mechanical problem.

Question: Where was machine stored? Could mice or rodents gain access to machine?

    Bookmark   March 21, 2014 at 7:16AM
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Since you said it was running when you sprayed it with starting fluid that I'm assuming it is related to fuel problem not mechanical, I would take the carb off and clean all parts with carb cleaner or brake cleaner, Make sure you count the number of turns as you remove the screws so you can reinstall them, Make sure the float on the bottom of the carb doesn't have a hole in it, shake it and if you hear fluid rattling in it then it is bad, Make sure none of the holes are clogged in the carb, I use a piece of thin wire from my steel wire brush.

    Bookmark   March 21, 2014 at 8:53PM
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Jimmy56 you the man. I took off the carb bulb after disconnecting the wire to it (note for next time, I need to drain gas first!). Then I sprayed some carb cleaner in there. I sprayed the rest of the carb while still on the machine. Was afraid to try and unscrew everything as I really have no mechanical experience.

Replaced the bulb and reconnected the wire, put the choke all the way up and got it started. Engine is pretty rough with choke pushed back down to full throttle(picture of rabbit), but after running for about 10 mins it's pretty close to normal. Going to get some fuel treatment and put that through, hopefully it solves the remaining roughness. Thanks for helping out a true novice.

    Bookmark   March 27, 2014 at 9:35PM
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