07:40PM | 09/24/04
Member Since: 09/02/04
5 lifetime posts
My 5.75 HP Briggs push mower will not idle. Just started happening out of the blue. After priming it by pushing in the bulb 3x as suggested, it starts up, but then after about 5 sec, it dies. Also, I've found that if I hold in the primer bulb, it won't die,but as soon as I release, it sputters a bit, then dies. I've cleaned the filter, changed out gas, cleaned around all moving parts around the deck area. Any suggestions?


Jim D

01:52AM | 09/27/04
Member Since: 01/06/01
342 lifetime posts
EJohns67 - hi, I have some thoughts I can offer you.

1. Does the mower run at all after you release the priming bulb? Will it continue to run if you move the throttle to its high speed setting?

2. Have you checked the fuel line for any blockages? I'd disconnect it where it attaches to the carbuerator and see if fuel flows easily.

3. How old is the fuel line? Could it be cracked all the way through, or have small holes in it?

4. Have you tried using some DryGas (the stuff used to evaporate water from your car's gas tank in the winter) to get rid of any water that may be in the carbuerator?

5. Have you checked the primer bulb to make sure it's not cracked or have any holes in it?

Checking those items may help you discover the problem. To me, it sounds like either water in the carb or a fuel blockage. I had a similar problem on a Ryobi weedwhacker and it turned out the primer bulb had a very small split it in - replacing it fixed the problem. Good luck! Jim D/West Point, VA


08:31AM | 09/29/04
Member Since: 09/02/04
5 lifetime posts
1. No, it dies in seconds of releasing the bulb. The throttle has only one setting, which is High-only runs with bulb pushed in.

2. No blockage found in fuel line between tank and carb. I blew through it easily.

3. About 3 or 4 yrs old. It does have bad cracking, but no leakage yet.

4. No, but if there's water, why would it run while holding in primer?

5. I visually checked and didn't see any, but if small enough it could be easily overlooked I suppose. I've heard of pin holes found in the bulbs and they put some kind of sealant stuff on the exterior of bulb to seal any holes and it fixed the problem. I'm just not sure what they used. Maybe it's just as easy to get a new primer bulb at store.

Thanks so much for all the suggestions. I've never had so many mower issues before. Last mower was a snapper and it lasted me 14 yrs. This one is only 4 yrs.


Jim D

01:24AM | 09/30/04
Member Since: 01/06/01
342 lifetime posts
EJohns67 - hi again! Based on your post, I'm thinking there's something going on with the primer bulb that's causing the problem. Its primary purpose is to force fuel into the carb before starting as the engine doesn't use a fuel pump. Something is letting air back into the line to break the vacuum/su-ction the primer bulb sets up in the fuel line which helps draw gas into the carb.

I'd lean towards simply replacing the bulb rather than try to coat it with anything. The coating could wear off rather easily through use or contact with gas. I'd bet the primer bulb is under $10 although it may not be a commonly-stocked part.

Also, I think I'd spend the $1 or so on a new fuel line if it's cracking badly. You can normally pick it up at a local auto parts store and they sell it by the foot; your mower probably only uses a 6" or so length. You may want to try new fuel line first before replacing the bulb just to see if that's it.

Here's hoping it's an easy and inexpensive fix - good luck! Jim D/West Point, VA


04:02PM | 05/30/09
Member Since: 05/29/09
1 lifetime posts
I thought all primer bulbs had a small 1/8 in hole in center. I am have the same problem with my mower, it will start on first pull run 10 sec. and die.

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