Troy-Bilt Lawn Mower Won't Start

The lawn mower small engine often has a separate model number. Use the small engine model number for a complete list of symptoms and parts. Watch our model # lookup video for help finding the model number.


The 2 most common part(s) or condition(s) which cause the symptom Lawn mower won't start are listed below starting with the most likely. Check or test each item and watch any available videos.

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Spark Plug - Part # 1620061 Mfg Part # 490-250-0009

Spark Plug

RepairClinic Item # 1620061

If the lawn mower engine does not start the spark plug might be defective. All small engines have an ignition coil. The coil is the device that provides spark for the spark plug(s). If the coil is bad power won't get to the spark plug(s). The coil is essentially a small, induction generator. It is mounted next to the flywheel. The flywheel has one or more strong, embedded magnets. As the flywheel spins, the magnet(s) zip past the induction coil, this action of a magnet passing past a coil induces a voltage. Depending on the design of the coil and the strength of the magnets, a stronger or weaker spark can be created and delivered to the spark plug(s). Each time the flywheel spins around a spark is generated. The best way to test a spark plug is to use a spark plug tester. The spark plug should have a strong, visible spark between the electrodes when the engine is cranking. If it doesn't, replace it.


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Other Causes and Conditions

Old or Bad Gasoline

If the lawn mower does not start, the carburetor might be clogged or have old or bad fuel in the float bowl. If old or bad fuel was left in the lawn mower for a long time some of the volatile ingredients may have evaporated, leaving a thicker, stickier product that is more like varnish or shellac. This sticky fuel can clog up the small jets and ports in the carburetor and it can be difficult to burn making it hard to start the engine. The only solution is to drain the old fuel from the float bowl and thoroughly clean the carburetor with carburetor cleaner. If that isn't effective, replace the entire carburetor.

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