How to Troubleshoot A Lawn Mower Not Staying On

Does your lawn mower lose power in the middle of mowing? There are many explanations for why this takes place. This issue is nonetheless solvable. The emphasis of the article will be the settlement of the problem.

To troubleshoot the problem, you mainly need to ensure that the air filter is clean, the spark plug is clean, the carburetor is clean, the fuel supply is efficient, the blade is sharp and straight, and the mower deck is clean. 

This article will discuss the reasons why a lawnmower cannot stay on. Then, we will identify simple approaches to troubleshooting a lawn mower not staying on.

What Causes Lawn Mower Not Staying On?

To troubleshoot a lawn mower with an issue where it will not stay on, you must first determine the origin of the problem. There are a number of reasons why a lawnmower may not stay on.

A lawn mower may shut down for a lot of different reasons. It may be caused by a dirty air filter, a dirty spark plug, a dirty carburetor, using old fuel, a dull, bent, or loose blade, or a clogged mower deck, among many other things.

These are the most common contributors to this problem, and having an awareness of them can assist you in resolving it in a timely and efficient manner so that you can get back to riding your lawnmower.

5 Steps to Troubleshoot a Lawn Mower That Not Staying On:

If your lawnmower often stops working while mowing the grass, you will have an awful experience. As this is a common problem, it has several solutions as well.

In addition, you might find several troubleshooting guides to help you troubleshoot the problem. But not all of them effectively provide beneficial results.

Therefore, I have come up with a simple and free solution to the issue, and you will be pleased with the results.

Things you will need to troubleshoot the lawn mower that not staying on

Check out the list of the required tools and materials needed to troubleshoot a lawn mower that does not stay on:

4-in-1 ScrewdriverCarb Cleaner
Adjustable WrenchCompressed Air
Needle Nose Pliers 
Half Inch Socket 
Nut Driver 
Safety Gloves & Goggles 

The fuel system is one of the primary causes of a lawn mower’s inability to stay on. The following Step 1 and Step 2 are aspects to look for when troubleshooting a problem with the fuel system:

Step-1: Check the Oil Level

First, check the level of the oil. If the oil level in your engine is low, internal components will not be sufficiently lubricated.

Alternatively, excess oil in the crankcase can cause smoke. Dense smoke may clog your air filter which result in lawn mower not stay on.

Check the Oil Level

 Step-2: Check the Fuel Tank is Venting Properly

After ensuring the oil level is alright, check the fuel tank venting system. If it is not venting properly, your lawn mower will run out of fuel while mowing and will not stay running.

To fix the problem, you must clean the vent of your cap. Then, if it is still not venting correctly, install a new one.

Check the Fuel Tank is Venting Properly

Blocked air filters, carburetors, and spark plugs are all potential reasons that can cause a lawn mower to die soon after starting. Follow the Step 3, Step 4, and Step 5 guidelines shown below for troubleshooting to resolve the issue:

Step-3: Clean the Air Filter

You can follow the steps given below to clear the clogged air filter:

  • To begin, locate the air filter that is attached to the engine of the lawn mower.
  • After that, either flip the valve or clamp the fuel line that shuts off the fuel supply.
  • Next, disconnect the throttle cable with needle-nose pliers.
  • The air filter is secured with two or more screws. Use a screwdriver to pull off the air filter.
  • If the air flow is blocked by dirt, use compressed air to clear it.

Note: To clean a foam air filter, all you need is a little detergent powder and warm water. Afterwards, you may dry it in the open air.

  • Because the air-blocking particles are too small to be removed by vacuuming, replacing a clogged air filter is always preferable.
  • Clean or replace the air filter if necessary.
Clean the Air Filter

Step-4: Clean the Carburetor

If the problem remains after cleaning or replacing the air filter, inspect the carburetor.

Carburetors are necessary for internal combustion engines to maintain the correct air-to-fuel ratio. However, carburetors may get clogged, causing the engine to be inefficient. Because of this, your lawn mower will not stay on after starting.

The following procedures might be used in order to clean carburetors:

  • Find the carburetor in your mower’s engine at the beginning.
  • Then you must have to disassemble the carburetor to find out if a clog is causing the issue.
  • Use compressed air to clean the outside of the carburetor thoroughly.
  • The next step is to take the carburetor bowl off and clean the threads on the carburetor nut by using a carb cleaner along with a wire brush.

Note: Ensure that the stem is unclogged by rinsing it thoroughly.

  • Finally, reassemble the clean carburetor.
Clean the Carburetor

Step-5: Clean the Spark Plug

When the spark plug is blocked, it cannot generate the required current to ignite the fuel and air combination, causing the mower to shut down after starting.

To clean the spark plug, the following steps should be followed:

  • After locating the spark plug, unscrew the spark plug using a socket.
  • Before removing the spark plug, clean the surrounding area with a cloth and then pull off the spark plug. This cleaning will prevent dust from entering the combustion chamber.
  • To effectively clean your spark plug, use a spray-on plug cleaner and a wire brush designed for ignition components.
Clean the Spark Plug

Note: If the spark plug is moist, there is no possibility that your lawn mower will continue running long enough, so make sure it is dry.

  • Reinstall the spark plug and reattach the ignition cord.
Clean the Spark Plug 2

You may watch the video.


Read the manual before using, maintaining, or repairing your lawnmower. Before inspection, make sure the engine is off and all power sources have been disconnected.

Frequently Asked Questions

Why Does My Lawn Mower Only Run for a Few Minutes Then Dies?

One of the main reasons for this phenomenon is that if the vacuum is powerful enough, fuel will stop flowing to the carburetor after 10 to 15 minutes, and the lawn mower will die.

What Might Other Potential Causes Result in a Lawn Mower Shut Down Soon After Starting?

Some other potential factors might cause lawn mower shut down soon after starting include old fuel, a clogged fuel line, plugged fuel filter or bad gas cap.

What Are the Signs That Indicate That Your Carburetor Needs Servicing?

Symptoms of a faulty carburetor include difficulty starting the lawn mower; the engine stalling while mowing; the engine running roughly while mowing; black smoke emerging from the muffler; and an increase in fuel consumption during normal lawn mower usage.

How Can the Carburetor in a Lawnmower Be Cleaned Without Disassembling It?

There is no need to remove the carburetor from the engine in order to clean it. You may instead quickly clean the inside and outside of the carburetor by using some professional lawnmower carburetor cleaner available in a spray can.

Final Verdict

This article will teach you about the troubleshooting guides for a lawn mower not staying on. After reading this article, you can follow the instructions to smoothly troubleshoot your mower to get rid of the shutdown problem of your mower.

Routine maintenance is the key to preventing your mower from avoiding such problems. Therefore, I suggest taking care of your mower, and still, if you encounter such problems, do not worry. Instead, simply follow the troubleshooting instructions in this article to resolve the issue.

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