LA115 John Deere Lawn Tractor Will Not Start?

I am 99% sure the cause is old gas due to my mother never servicing it. The LA115 is currently at 299 hours. It started and ran prior to the old gas running out. After refueling with new clean fuel it still would not start. I tried starter fluid in the tube next to air filter (which was surprisingly clean) and still no start. Next I changed the plug which was seriously rusted and obviously old, still only cranks, but does not catch. What should be the next logical step - clean/replace carb? Or how do I clean any residual bad gunk out of the engine?


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Gold Post Medal for All Time! 677 Posts
April 19, 20191 found this helpful

The carburetor could get gummed up. This is the next step.

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April 15, 20200 found this helpful

We had a big tractor on our horse farm and it would not start every once in a blue moon. My dad showed me how to open the fuel lines and let a bit of the fuel run out. The lines are the black hoses which are connected with usually screw on ends. Anyway- reason to do this is its very common for tractors to get tiny pieces of gunk in the gas tank. This ends up in the fuel lines and tractor wont turn over. When you do it- let it run into a plastic container where you can see wha comes out. It only takes a tiny piece to clog up lines. Its funny-I got to be a real pro at fixing that tractor and Im the daughter- lol.


One other thing- if you notice pieces coming out- no matter how tiny- your gas tank needs to be cleaned. We use to pull it up in our barn which had a big air compressor . We would unhook fuel lines and let run out into gas cans. While the gas was running out we would take the air compressor hose- take off gas tank cap- wrap a cloth around hose and opening of tank-and blow air into it for at least 10 min while gas is running out. This will blow out any debris floating around. Works like a charm.....

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Bronze Feedback Medal for All Time! 168 Feedbacks
June 24, 20210 found this helpful

Drop the bottom off the carburetor and make sure the needle valve is firing and see if it's sticking; also check the plug to make sure it is firing; the problem might be the magneto. I asked my husband's opinion since he's worked on various lawn mowers.

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