SOLVED: Craftsman Riding Mower Won’t Start: A Guide For Homeowners

Today’s homeowners have quite a few choices for lawn mowing but most agree that few could beat the efficiency and effectiveness of riding mowers. Able to cut the grass to a reasonable length in a matter of moments, riding mowers help save time and effort. Still, it’s not uncommon for riding mowers to experience starting trouble and the same applies to those made by Craftsman. Needless to say, when people notice that their Craftsman riding mower won’t start before a mowing session, they all feel the same thing: frustration.

A Summary Of Starting Trouble In Craftsman Riding Mowers

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Unable to start your Craftsman riding mower and don’t know what to do next? In that case, you have come to the right place. This article would show you all the possibilities that you must remember once it comes to starting trouble in  Craftsman riding mowers.

Tank Is Out Of Gas 

Since Craftsman riding mowers run on gas, there is no way they could start if their tank is out of gas. So if your mower won’t start, one of the first things to do is to open the tank cap to inspect the gas level. Cannot see any gas inside the tank no matter how close you look? Then you only need to fill the tank with gas in order to get your mower starting like usual again.

Note: For your information, gas degrades as time passes by. Assuming that you find some gas in its tank, your mower may still refuse to start if that gas happens to be stale. That means you should consider filing the tank with new gas if your mower has been sitting idle for some time. It’s a good idea to remove the stale gas before adding fresh gas to the tank to avoid negative effects on components of the mower.

Closed Valve 

As a safety feature, Craftsman incorporates a purpose-design valve to the gas line of its riding mowers. By opening/closing the valve, homeowners would be able to regulate the flow of gas from the tank to the carburetor. In the case that your mower fails to start, there is a chance that its valve is still in the “close” position. Open the valve, restore the flow of gas and your mower is going to start with relative ease.

Dirty Filter 

To keep contaminants out of the carburetor, Craftsman riding mowers come with a gas filter that filters incoming gas. Eventually, the build-up of contaminants on the gas filter could become enough to obstruct the flow of gas. Naturally, with the dirty filter starving the carburetor of gas, starting trouble is the consequence. On the bright side, by removing the contaminant accumulation on the gas filter, gas should flow normally once more.

Depleted Batteries 

In layman’s terms, electricity coming from the batteries of your mower plays a key role in the starting process. If the charge level of the battery bank drops too low, your Craftsman riding mower would be incapable of securing enough juice to start. To determine whether depleted batteries is the reason why your Craftsman riding mower won’t start, measure its voltage with a multimeter. If the reading indicates a low charge level, recharge/replace your battery bank as soon as possible.

Spark Plug Issues 

The job of the spark plug is to ignite the mixture of air and gas to start the engine of the mower. Because of that, if the spark plug of your Craftsman riding mower acts up, starting trouble ensures.

In the case that you suspect the spark plug to be behind the situation, you should check the spark plug wire first. If the spark plug wire becomes disconnected for some reason, the spark plug cannot work. In addition, it’s strongly recommended that you examine the spark plug for signs of damages. To be thorough, you must replace your spark plug if it seems uncompromised.

The Maintenance Of Craftsman Riding Mowers

Craftsman Riding Mower Keeps Stalling? | ThriftyFun

Craftsman riding mower won’t start is just one of the topics of complaints regarding riding mowers made by Craftsman. However, if you follow the tips and tricks down below, you could save yourself a lot of headaches in the future.

  • Keep gas and oil in mind: To get the most out of your mower, it’s suggested that you take a look at the gas and oil level from time to time. Without receiving a sufficient amount of gas and oil, your mower is going to suffer a wide range of issues. Besides that, you should pay special attention to the shelf life of gas and oil for your mower. The last thing you want to do is force your mower to run on expired gas and oil.
  • Lubricate all moving parts periodically: Lubrication not only reduces friction between moving parts but also protects them from the elements. Hence, if you lubricate all moving parts of your riding mower, the odds of it developing problems would reduce. For good measure, stick to products from well-known brands while choosing lubricants for your mower. Additionally, since too much lubricant may lead to dirt build-ups, you need to wipe away the excess in the end.
  • Check up on the blades: In general, the blades of a riding mower dictate the result of the mowing so you should take them into account. If the blades seem dull, it’s best to sharpen them to restore their cutting potential. For damaged blades, you have to replace them with new ones immediately. Feel free to get in touch with Craftsman to see how you could sharpen/replace the blades of your riding mower on your own.


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How long would riding mowers last? 

The lifespan of riding mowers changes from case to case but standard models should last between 500 and 750 hours. Assuming that you look after your mower, it could work for as long as 1,500 hours before replacement is necessary.

Is it wise to leave riding mowers in the outdoors?

Designed for outdoor use, riding mowers may be left out in the open but that is less the ideal. Prolonged exposure to elements such as snow, sunlight, rainwater and so on tend to lead to a number of issues over time. Moreover, since riding mowers cost a lot, the risk of theft is high if you fail to take precautions. As a result, it’s widely advised that you put your riding mower inside when not in use for optimal protection.

What is the meaning behind black exhaust from riding mowers?

If your mower releases black exhaust, there is a chance that the gas percentage in the gas-air mixture is too high. To address black exhaust, you have to increase airflow by cleaning the air filter, adjusting the carburetor, etc.


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