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Poulan Pro Riding Mower Won't Start

Category Lawn Mowers
Why a mower won't start up can sometimes be a mystery. This is a guide troubleshooting a Poulan Pro riding mower that won't start.
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Ask a QuestionHere are the questions asked by community members. Read on to see the answers provided by the ThriftyFun community or ask a new question.

By 3 found this helpful
June 4, 2016

I have a Poulan Pro riding lawn mower. I had it sitting for over a year and it work great before storage. I took it out of storage and it tried to fire-up, but it wouldn't. So, I cleaned the carburetor, changed the plug, and replaced the battery. Now it won't turn over at all. I get absolutely nothing when I turn the key. I checked the fuses and it has good gas in it. Any help would be appreciated. Thanks.

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Anonymous
June 5, 20160 found this helpful
Best Answer

A lawnmower mechanic showed me a little trick that has saved me many trips to the shop. He raised the "hood" on my mower and turned the engine by hand until it had passed the compression stroke, or top dead center. Just place your hands on either side of the screen and turn. If that doesn't work you might try removing the panel that covers the contact points and tap near them gently with something like a screwdriver handle. On my mower it was just below the steering wheel, near where my toes would be while mowing. Hope one of these will help.

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March 11, 20120 found this helpful

I have a 42 inch Poulan Pro riding mower that won't even turn over. The battery is fully charged and I hear a click, but then nothing happens. It seems like the electric starter might be bad, but I'm not sure. Any suggestions?

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By Terry F

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March 11, 20120 found this helpful
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I have a John Deere but I believe the engines in both units have Briggs and Stratton engines. I also have the same proplem. Two JD dealers told me the fault is the Briggs and Stratton engine. Seems the values get out of alignment very easily and have to be reset. But one dealer told me to turn the air vent on top of the engine several times. I did that and the engine started.

Sometimes I have to turn the vent in the opposite direction. It is a pain but the only way to start the engine unless I take it to the dealer. Over time you would have to take it to the dealer a lot to have the valves reset. It is not the battery. Hope this is of some help.

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March 13, 20120 found this helpful
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Maybe a better explanation of my situation will help. I bought a brand new John Deere LA120. After a few uses it would not start or I would get a click sound or it would just turn over once or twice then nothing. I thought it was the battery or an open ground causing the problem.

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A newer high amp battery may not change anything. I carefully checked out all the wiring. Nothing. I asked a dealer. He said it was the valves out of alignment. I thought he was crazy. I checked with a second dealer and he said the same thing. He said they could adjust the valves but I would be back next year with the same problem.

His suggestion was to rotate the air intake counter clockwise that sat on top of the engine until I felt resistance then it should start. I rotated the air intake as he suggested and could feel the resistance and hear the cylinders and valves moving. Then it started right up. So that is how I have to start the thing every time.

Sometimes I have to turn the air intake clockwise for it to start. The air cleaner is the screen disc that sits on top of the engine and rotates when the engine is running.

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May 24, 20130 found this helpful

My Poulan Pro mower will not turn over, nothing. I replaced the battery; fuse is good. How do I test the starter?

By Roger

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Answers

May 27, 20130 found this helpful
Best Answer

Try spraying WD-40 in the carburetor. It worked for me. Hope this helps.

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January 2, 20150 found this helpful
Best Answer

Try testing the solenoid heres a video on how to www.youtube.com/watch?v=MsvJMnpQBas

You might also have a faulty safety switch. Hope it helps.

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By 0 found this helpful
October 22, 2017

My Poulan Pro mower won't start. The solenoid and starter are fine. The fly wheel turns a couple times, but won't start. I took the plug out to check for the spark and the fly wheel turns fine. I'm lost at what to do. Maybe it's the coil or carb? Anyone have any ideas? Thank you.

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Answers

October 22, 20170 found this helpful
Best Answer

Here are a few things you can check:

  1. Look under your seat to see if there is a safety switch. Many times this is off and needs to be reset. Plus on these types of mowers you need to be sitting on the seat to start them.
  2. Did you happen to leave gas in the mower the last time you used it? If so, you more than likely have a sludge buildup in the gas tank.
  3. This sludge buildup will also be found in your carburetor.
  4. You will need to clean the gas tank and the carburetor to remove the sludge build up inside of them.
  5. Pull your spark plug and see if it's dirty. If it is then you'll need to replace this.
  6. Check your battery to make sure it's fully charged.
  7. You can try and bypass the spark plug and coil to see if you can jump start the motor.
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  9. I would also suggest if none of these work for you and you're still having problems starting your mower you can watch a few YouTube videos to get a better idea or how to follow the instruction I've given you.
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By 0 found this helpful
October 2, 2017

I have a Poulan Pro that was given to me. I have used it to mow my lawn, but when I shut it off after cleaning it, it will not start, no click, no nothing. I have to charge the battery in order for it to start. I think it may be something electrical, but I have no meters to check for electrical problems. I have checked and the battery was not holding a charge and now I have to wait to get a new battery. Sorry if this is so long. I just can't check the electrical system to see what is the problem.
Thanks.

Answers

October 2, 20171 found this helpful
Best Answer

There is a safety switch under the seat. It makes sure the mower doesnt run unless someone is sitting on it. If it is disabled or broken, the mower wont run even if someone is sitting on it. I would check that first.

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By 0 found this helpful
March 15, 2011

We have 2004 Poulan Pro 18.5 hp, 42 inch cut. I got it out to start the mowing and it won't start. The starter will engage, but will not crank. When we put the jump cable to the starter it spins. Does anyone have any ideas what my problem may be? I would greatly appreciate it. I'm 67, live on my little SS check and unemployment with no work in sight. Thanks a bunch.

By carla from Winnabow, NC

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March 27, 20110 found this helpful
Best Answer

We were having trouble with our mower, turned out to be the gas, we put gas that had ethanol in it!
Drained the tank and put in new gas with no ethanol, works beautifully.

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By 0 found this helpful
March 19, 2016

I have a Poulan Pro riding lawn mower. It will turn over, but won't start. We checked the fuses and it has gas in it. Any help would be appreciated. Thanks.

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March 20, 20161 found this helpful
Best Answer

I would suggest new spark plug and fresh gas. You could also take our the spark plug, spray some starter fluid in, put plug back in and try starting again.

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By 0 found this helpful
September 5, 2015

I have a Poulan PB195H42LT and I am unable to get it to turn over. There is no click or any other noise. The battery is fully charged and it was running good the previous day. I checked the user's manual and it suggested that it might be the fuse, but I have been unable to find it. The manual said that it was located in the seat with the safety switch, but we took the seat completely off and we could not find it. Is there any other place that we might look? Also, if the seat safety switch is unplugged, will the mower start?

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September 9, 20150 found this helpful
Best Answer

I found the answer to one of my questions. The fuse is located beneath the solenoid, clipped onto the frame. There is a red wire going into it and one coming out of it. Fuse is good and it still will not turn over.

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December 20, 20130 found this helpful

I have a Poulan Pro 18.5 hp rideon mower with a Briggs and Stratton engine. Petrol has leaked into the oil and the engine will not start.
What is the cause and how do I fix the problem?

By Noel

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May 5, 20140 found this helpful
Best Answer

This happen a lot with all type of mowers best thing to do is put a shut off valve on your gas line coming from the gas tank.

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October 31, 20110 found this helpful

I replaced all necessary maintenance stuff on this mower, battery, filters, plugs, etc. and it still won't start. It cranks over ok but won't start. I fed fuel in carb and it will start and runs until fuel in carb runs out. Can anyone help me figure out why it won't start and run without feeding fuel into carb?

By Lou

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October 31, 20110 found this helpful
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Sounds like fuel starvation. There must be a fuel blockage some where between the gas tank and the carb. Could be anything from a kinked fuel line to blocked fuel line.

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By 0 found this helpful
May 5, 2015

I have a Poulan Pro 700 ex mower that will try to start and run for a few seconds if I pour starting fluid in carburetor. However it won't stay running. I have run carburetor cleaner thru and removed and changed the filter. I also drained the gas and added fresh gas, replaced in line fuel filter, and checked fuel lines. What is left? Please help, it's making me crazy.

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October 28, 20170 found this helpful

You also need to flush and clean your carburetor. The dirty gas is in the carburetor and clogging it.

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October 29, 20170 found this helpful

Fixing mower

Step 1
Raise the "hood" on the mower and turn the engine by hand until it has passed the compression stroke, or top dead center.

Step 2
If that doesn't work you might try removing the panel that covers the contact points and tap near them gently with something like a screwdriver handle.

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By 0 found this helpful
August 15, 2015

This pertains to a 2006 Poulan 300 riding tractor 19.5 eng 42 in cut. The gas is all backed up in the carborater and the pipe next to the air fiter area. The mower, just this last start, was hard to start, but it finally started. It would drive 10 ft. or so then stall. Any answers on why this happened, this mower always started the first turn? And best of all how do I fix the problem, all help would be great. TKS

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October 27, 20170 found this helpful

You left gas in the mower the last time you used the mower. You'll need to clean the gas tank, hoses, and carburetor of all the old gas and sludge. Refill the tank and try again. You'll probably need a carburetor cleaning kit to make sure you get all the sludge out of the carburetor.

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By 0 found this helpful
April 30, 2015

I have a Poulan tractor. It is not starting up from the key, but is starting up when I try it directly from starter after removing the kill wire. But when I again put the kill wire on its place it turns off. Everything else is OK. So is it the solenoid or the clutch switch? Please help me.

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December 4, 20170 found this helpful

You kill wire to the starter is bad or damaged. This wire goes to the wires on the chassis. You'll need to follow this wire and change it out.

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By 0 found this helpful
December 10, 2017

I have an 18.5hp Poulan Pro riding mower. It will not start. It was fine when I parked it 3 weeks ago. I have checked all safety switches and they are all good. I have put a new battery in it. It turns over 1 time, then nothing. I took the plug out and it spins just fine. I checked the plug and it sparks. The oil is fine. I hand turned the dust cap, still just 1 turn. Can anyone help me?

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July 24, 20140 found this helpful

I have a Poulan Pro Hydrostatic riding mower. When you start the mower nothing happens, no sound, nothing. I replaced the battery this morning and still nothing, the ground wire is good. I can not find a fuse. The model # is PB195H42LT, serial# is 022112D003206.

By Angela H.

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May 8, 20140 found this helpful

My Poulan (18Hp Briggs) riding lawn mower won't start. I changed the oil and filter, however I did not fill up the oil to required amount, as mower was on a slight incline. I added 1/2 quart and it started very well. Put into gear and started to move mower to level ground.

Then the sound came! Like I dropped a tool into the engine. I stopped the mower and checked the dip stick. There was no oil level and white smoke. I forgot that filter was dry and that any oil put into engine would go directly to filter. There is no real resistance when I turn flywheel - after each revolution there's a clunking sound. What have I done :( Can I salvage it? What are my next steps?

By Steve O.

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By 0 found this helpful
March 8, 2014

My Poulan mower 15.5hp will not start. I installed a new battery and a new starter, but it still will not start. Start spins, but will not engage to turn the motor.

By dromo55 from Harlingen, TX

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September 3, 20130 found this helpful

I have recently bought a new battery and ignition switch which has worked in the past. However, when I turn the key there isn't even the smallest sound. I have tested the battery and it is showing full power. The lawnmower is as dead as a nail. Suggestions?

By Brad

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September 23, 20120 found this helpful

I have a Poulan Pro riding mower with a 25 hp Briggs and Stratton engine. The mower itself hasn't given me one problem until this past summer while I was in the middle of mowing. While mowing the backyard, I could feel the mower dying on me and watched the battery meter slowly fall and then it shut off and I haven't been able to start it since.

I have replaced the battery, starting solenoid, ignition, and the only thing that happens is the lights come on and the fan will click when you turn the key. We also tried jumping it off of a car battery. Still, no start. Any ideas?

By Walter

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September 15, 20120 found this helpful

I have fire from the battery to key switch, but no fire from key switch to solenoid. I put in a new solenoid, and it still won't start. I can jump start it from solenoid and it turns over. Can any one help me out. Thanks.

By Bobby from Lake Arthur, LA

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June 17, 20120 found this helpful

My Poulan riding mower cranks, but won't start. It is a model #27147 with a 13.5 Briggs engine. It is an older mower that a neighbor gave me, but there is no manual.

By Brent

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March 31, 20120 found this helpful

I have a Poulan riding mower. I got my volt meter; with mower off it reads 12.7 , with the mower running it reads 17.6 until it engages the blades, then it reads 14.2. What's wrong? How can i fix it? I can only start it by jumping it off my truck. Thanks.

By Dustin

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February 27, 20120 found this helpful

I have a Poulan with an 18.5 briggs. It turns, but will not start. I replaced the battery, drained and cleaned fuel tank, replaced filter; I have spark. I alos disconected line at carb and do have fuel to carb. It will start for a second if fuel is poured in carb then dies. Is this a carb problem?

By Danny C.

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February 26, 20120 found this helpful

My mower just died. It will turn over, has gas, and a good battery. Any suggestions?

By Deb

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March 15, 20110 found this helpful

I have a Poulan riding lawn tractor that I just replaced the ignition switch on. The mower would not even turn over. The battery is fully charged. The ignition made a clicking noise when I installed it and after a couple of tries it will not turn over again. Any ideas?

By Carol from Bloomington, IL

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September 23, 20100 found this helpful

I have a Poulan lawn tractor. I was having trouble starting it so I decided to charge it for 24 hours. I was still having trouble turning over and then I heard a loud popping noise and then nothing. I thought it was the battery so I replaced it and still nothing. Is the starter going out or is it the solenoid?

By Marc from Lexington, KY

Answers:

Poulan Pro Riding Lawn Mower Won't Start

The "popping" noise you heard, was probably a fuse.
Other than your carburetor backfiring due to the air gap being too large, I don't see it being anything else. (09/15/2010)

By spurlock small engine

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July 29, 20100 found this helpful

I have a Poulan Pro riding mower, with an 18 hp Briggs and Stratton engine and it won't start. It will turn over, but no fire to the spark plug. It has a new plug and coil. It is getting gas. Please help!

John

Answers:

Poulan Pro Riding Lawn Mower Won't Start

My new coil was bad! I put another new coil on and now it is running great. (06/21/2010)

By John McDaniel

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June 14, 20100 found this helpful

I have an almost new Poulan PRO riding mower. It has the 19 hp Briggs and Stratton Intech motor. When you start it, it grinds over and over and doesn't try to fire. It also backfires while grinding. Could the pin be sheared? Please help.

By Shane Byrd from Booneville, KY

Answers:

Poulan Pro Riding Lawn Mower Won't Start

First take out the spark plug and wipe it off. Over winter some moisture can get in there. If that doesn't work replace the plug. (05/17/2010)

By terri

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May 16, 20100 found this helpful

I have a Poulan Pro riding mower. I have replaced the switch, charged the battery and the fuse I found is good, but when I turn the key I get nothing.

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