Now that fall is upon us, it is time to take out the leaf blower. The most repetitive chore of the fall season is leaf blowing, and a failing leaf blower will make fall leaf cleanup a struggle. Fortunately, troubleshooting a leaf blower is easier than it seems. So, what do you do if your leaf blower isn’t starting?
Common Reasons Why Your Poulan Pro Leaf Blower Is Not Starting and Potential Fixes
First, you must figure out why your leaf blower is not starting. Then, proceed to fix any underlying issues, starting from the cheapest to fix. This way, you do not spend money on an expensive spare part, while the solution is an easy fix.
Below are some reasons why your Poulan leaf blower is not starting;
Faulty Spark Plugs
In most cases, this is the culprit behind a non-starting leaf blower. It is always the cheapest issue to repair. The spark plug produces the spark that starts up your gas leaf blower. If it is defective, three things can happen: backfiring, misfiring, or not firing.
Check for wear and tear and replace the spark plug if damaged. To check for wear and tear;
- Use a deep socket and ratchet to remove the spark plug from the leaf blower.
- Look for carbon buildup on the electrode. If there is heavy carbon buildup, replace the spark plug.
- Also, check the gap between the spark plug and the ignition coil.
- Use a spark plug tester to check if the spark plug is still working. If the spark produced between the tester terminals is weak or too weak, replace the spark plug.
Note: The issue could also result from bad wiring or a faulty ignition coil. If replacing the spark plug does not solve the issues, move on to the next possible reasons and troubleshoot.
Faulty Power Switch
If the power switch is damaged, your leaf blower will not start up as the spark plug is not getting ignited. This could be as a result of a short circuit.
- Press the button several to check if it is working.
- Then, use a circuit tester to check if the power circuit is functioning properly.
- If the circuit is broken, then replace the power button.
- Alternatively, have a Certified two-cycle mechanic repair or replace it if you are unsure you can do it successfully.
- If the leaf blower is still under warranty, take it to an authorized professional to fix it for you.
Clogged Spark Arrestor
The spark arrestor manages the sparks produced by your leaf blower. At times, it gets clogged with soot, which prevents the engine from working.
Clean or replace the damaged spark arrestor if it is beyond repair.
- Inspect the screen to see if it is clogged.
- If the screen is clogged, remove it from the engine, clean it using a wire brush, and then put it back into the engine.
- If this does not work, then replace the spark arrestor.
Clogged Fuel Filter
If your leaf blower has been sitting for a while, the ingredients in the fuel may become thicker and stickier due to fuel evaporation. As a result, the fuel filter may get clogged by the sticky fuel, preventing the engine from starting.
- Drain the old fuel in the fuel tank if it has been sitting in the tank for 30 days or more.
- Then replace the fuel filter.
- Also, remove the fuel lines that run from each end of the fuel filter and replace them.
Fuel sitting in the leaf blower gas tank can deteriorate over time. This can prevent the leaf blower from starting up. As a rule of thumb, drain fuel from your leaf blower if you only use it briefly. This will prevent the fuel from getting sticky or degrading.
Drain the old fuel from the gas tank and add fresh fuel.
Old sticky fuel can also clog the leaf blower’s carburetor. This will prevent the leaf blower’s engine from starting up.
- Take the carburetor apart and inspect it to see if it has debris.
- Ensure all its components are in good working condition.
- If it is clogged, clean it using a carburetor cleaner.
- If this does not work, then use a carburetor rebuilding kit to rebuild it.
- If rebuilding the carburetor does not work. Then replace it.
- Also, check if the primer bulb is damaged and replace it.
Broken Rewind Spring
When you pull the starter rope on your leaf blower, a rewind spring recoils the starter rope onto a pulley that then causes the engine of the leaf blower to start. If the rewind spring is broken, it cannot recoil the starter rope into the pulley.
- Check to see if the recoil spring is disengaged and realign it.
- Check to see if any rewind springs are broken or corroded and replace them.
- If multiple springs are broken, replace the entire recoil starter pulley. It is also easier to find than buying individual springs.
Broken Recoil Starter
The recoil starter pulley turns on the motor that starts your leaf blower. The starter rope retracts into the recoil starter then cranks the engine to turn it on. If the pulley is broken, it cannot rewind the starter rope. And the leaf blower will not start as a result.
- Remove the recoil starter assembly and inspect it for damage.
- Pull the starter rope and check to see if the tabs retract the starter rope back into the pulley.
- Check to see if the rope is jammed or stuck. If it is okay, but the tabs are not retracting, replace the recoil starter.
Clogged Air Filter
A clogged air filter may cause your leaf blower’s engine to get heavy fuel or no air injection. If the air-to-fuel ratio is incorrect, the leaf blower cannot start.
- Remove any dirt and debris from the filter using a soft brush.
- If this does not work or the air filter is too damaged and clogged, replace it.
Defective Ignition Coil
The ignition coil sends voltage to the spark plug, which sparks up and starts the engine. If the ignition coil is damaged, it cannot start the chain reaction that powers up the leaf blower.
- Test the ignition coil using an ignition coil tester.
- If the ignition coil is not working, replace it.
- This step should be done after repairing the spark plug, as the leaf blower will still not start up if the spark plug is not working.
- Ignition coils produce an electric charge, and you should leave the repair work to a professional if you need to be better versed in electric repair work.
- Sometimes, you are better off buying a replacement leaf blower, as a new ignition coil may cost up to $85. Coupled with labor costs, it may cost more than buying a new leaf blower.
Disconnected, ground, or faulty wiring can prevent your leaf blower from starting. If the copper wire touches a metal part inside your leaf blower, it will get ground out, preventing it from working.
Faulty wiring should not be taken lightly, as it may cause your leaf blower to fire. If you see any signs of damaged wiring, get it repaired as soon as possible.
- Inspect your leaf blower’s wiring.
- Unground any ground wiring.
- Replace the faulty wiring.
- Let an authorized professional handle these particular issues unless you are a seasoned DIYer.
- Additionally, fooling around with the wires may lead to more damage and potentially void your warranty.
- Lastly, you may get electrocuted by the coil charge when fiddling with the wires if you need to be better versed in electrical repairs.
Wrong oil and gas mixture ratio
If the oil-to-gas ratio in your leaf blower is incorrect, the engine may not be able to start. However, this only applies to 2-stroke engines. Check your user manual to confirm if your leaf blower has a two-stroke or four-cycle engine.
- Empty the fuel in your leaf blower if it was not missed to the correct ratio.
- Then add freshly mixed oil and gas mixture.
- Ensure the gas ratio you use in your engine is 50 parts gas and 1 part oil. Which equates to 2.6 ounces of oil for 1 gallon of gas.