Model #917388850 Craftsman walk behind lawnmower, gas

Question and Answers


my mower will start but unless you keep pushing the primer button it cuts right off what could that be


Thank you for your question.

Usually when the mower starts and stalls, right away it has a dirty carburetor. First, make sure the fuel is no older than 5 weeks old. I would think the fuel is fresh this late in the mowing season. Next check the air filter. If the air filter is plugged the mower may not run. If the air filter is clean and the fuel is fresh, I recommend cleaning the carburetor.

To clean the carburetor you have to remove the spark plug wire and tip the mower on to its side. Make sure the oil fill tube is towards the ground. Then remove the float bowl nut on the bottom of the carburetor. Some fuel will leak out so do this in a well-ventilated area. Remove the float bowl, clean it with carburetor cleaner, and dry it. Do not get carburetor cleaner on the rubber gasket. The cleaner will expand the rubber and renders it useless. Next, put the straw on the spray nozzle of the carburetor cleaner. Spray the cleaner in to the holes where the float bowl nut came from. These are the fuel pick up tubes. Once those are flushed, clean the holes on the float bowl nut. I recommend cleaning the holes with bread tie wire and carburetor cleaner. Then assemble the carburetor.

Tip the mower back up right and test the operation. If the engine does the same starting and stalling, I recommend replacing the carburetor.

I had a customer send me a link to video he found that shows how to clean the carburetor. The engine is not exactly the same as yours but it will give you a general idea. Here is a link to that video

I hope this is helpful.

If you need further assistance, please reply with more details below.

Here is a link to order any parts you need. Sears Parts Direct .

Thank you for using Manage my life.

Mark T.

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Mark T -
Sears Technician
May 01, 2012