NorthStar Pressure Washer gas engine not starting

chmorlDecember 29, 2008

I have a NorthStar pressure washer (model # 1578922A), with Tecumseh OHH55 gas engine and an Annovi Reverberi XTV pump (2030 PSI, 3 gpm, 3400 RPM, 4 HP). I have been using it for several years without a problem. However, now I am unable to start the engine. The last time I ran the pressure washer, I noticed that the washer would sometimes "drag", acting as though it wasn't getting enough water through the pump -- though I checked the hoses and they were fine, without any kinks or leaks.

Here's what I have done:

(1) replaced gas in tank with new gas (the gas was fairly old).

(2) replaced air filter (it was pretty dirty).

(3) replaced spark plug (I am getting spark).

(4) cleaned out water inlet screen (it was a little dirty, but not too bad).

(5) removed unloader valve and cleaned in soapy, warm water.

After doing this, I am still not able to get the engine to start. So I tried several other things:

(6) instead of using the gas/carburetor priming bulb, I just shot some starting fluid (for drying out spark plug wires in car engines) directly into the carburetor. The engine did startup briefly, but it never was able to go more than a few seconds before quitting.

(7) I noticed that the pressure washer's starter pull-rope-coil would feel some resistance after a few tries on the pull-rope. So I engaged the trigger on the gun while trying to start the engine. Perhaps there is a issue with the pump itself? Nevertheless, I was not able to get the engine to start, even though the resistance was now gone. I probably should never have to engage the trigger on the gun since hopefully the unloader valve should take care of any problems.

I am not sure what to try next. Are there any suggestions of what might be wrong, what can be done next to fix this?

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canguy(British Columbia)

It started and quit indicating a fuel system problem. You likely need to disassemble the carburetor and give it a thorough cleaning.It is gummed up with stale gas.

    Bookmark   December 30, 2008 at 12:12AM
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If the carburetor has a metal bowl on it, try this:
Remove the bolt that holds the bowl on the carb. Check that bolt, in the threads and in the smooth shank of the bolt. Poke a thin wire into any holes, or black spots you find in it. Then blow thru the end hole, and reinstall the bolt. (If your carb has the plastic bowl, forget the instructions above!)
Try to start the engine the right way. Those Tec carbs do plug up the teeny holes in those bolts, and they do just what you dewcribed!

    Bookmark   January 1, 2009 at 4:03PM
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Only other advise or I have other than what posted is. Now don't tell anyone about this----Buy a can of CARB. CLEANER, read the instructions and warnings, and clean the carb as suggested. Don't leave gas in it when you put it in long term storage. IMO anthing over two or three months is long term storage ifyou do the gas just gummed up the carb. small passages

IMO starting fluid is a waste of money, use carb cleaner as a primer you get better cleaning action and it do evaporate as quick, but quicker than gasoline. If you do decide to buy it Don't get sucked in on the Small engine carb. cleaner in the very small can, you just pay more for less. I buy the big can for cars choke and carb cleaner, injector cleaner, or throttle body cleaner don't matter unless you have throttle body or fuel injection then only use that formula.

    Bookmark   January 3, 2009 at 8:37AM
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I actually found two problems with the pressure washer engine:

(1) Yes, the carburetor was pretty dirty. It took a few cleanings with some Gumout Air Intake and Throttle Body Cleaner and some canned air to clear out the gunk, but that took care of most of the problem. Fortunately, the side-draft float bowl design on these Tecumseh carbs are pretty easy to work on without having to completely tear it apart (this model uses a metal bowl, but I was a little anxious about poking a metal wire into it -- but alas, the carb cleaner and the forced air was sufficient).

(2) Also, there was a leak in the breather tube. Basically, the rubber tubing had split in half, so I replaced that as well.

Now everything is working perfectly. Thanks for the help everyone!

    Bookmark   January 10, 2009 at 11:16AM
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change the oil. it has a low oil cut off.

    Bookmark   June 7, 2010 at 8:25PM
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