If your Lawn Mower wont start when hot, it helps to have guide as to where to begin.

If your Lawn Mower wont start when hot, it helps to have guide as to where to begin. 

I have found this section of a much larger article covering many aspects of small engines to be very helpful. There is a lot of good information here pertaining to why your Lawn Mower wont start when hot so you may want to bookmark this page. 

Notes on the Troubleshooting and Repair of Small Gasoline Engines and Rotary Lawn Mowers 

Version 2.39 (28-Aug-07) Copyright © 1994-2007 Samuel M. Goldwasser 

--- All Rights Reserved ---

Instant troubleshooting chart - most common problems and possible causes


The following chart lists a variety of common problems and nearly all possible causes. Diagnostic procedures will then be needed to determine which actually apply. The 'possible causes' are listed in *approximate* order of likelihood. 

While this chart lists many problems, it is does not cover everything that can go wrong. However, it can be a starting point for guiding your thinking in the proper direction. 

(Portions of the following from: Chilten, Small Engine Repair 2-12 HP, (1).) 

Engine dies or won't restart when hot

There can be numerous reasons for the engine to quit running when it gets up to operating temperature. They might be expansion of metal parts where bolts/screws aren't tight enough, breakdown of the condenser for the ignition points (if equipped), or a possibility of a crack somewhere. An overall inspection of the tightness of fasteners would be a good place to start.

• If the miss is a miss, the problem probably has to do with ignition or the fuel mixture. Check the tightness of the carburetor mounting bolts and where the intake manifold/air-fuel mix tube fastens to the engine block.

• If instead, the miss is popping through the exhaust, this might be caused by a bad exhaust valve or valve seat.

• If there is puffing or popping near the engine head, the head bolts might not be tight.

• If the engine spins over too freely when it's hot- This indicating much lower compression, check the torque of the head bolts-if they were loose, the engine should now restart.

• If it won't restart until it's cooled down, the exhaust valve (and/or valve seat) may be the problem. If you can remove and disassemble the engine yourself, this isn't expensive to have corrected.

If not, the shop labor for tear-down and reassembly will be fairly costly. A common reason for exhaust valve failure is that grass clippings become embedded in the cooling fins around the exhaust port area.

• If the engine is just failing to fire the spark plug when it's hot, there's a good chance that it's time to change the (points and) condenser. This can usually be confirmed by quickly removing the spark plug after it quits running, and grounding the spark plug base securely to the engine (away from fuel vapors). Then spin the engine to see if there is a hot blue spark with an audible snap, snap noise.


As soon as the engine shuts down, turn the flywheel by hand or DISCONNECT the plug wire and turn the blade by hand to see if there is any compression. I have had several B&S engines that did not have enough valve clearance and when hot, the valve stem expands in length enough that the valve does not properly close. After cooling, engine will be OK.

Also could be a bad condenser or the other faults listed above. Problems with the ignition coil can make an engine impossible to start when warm (or even stop running when it warms up), apparently this happens on motorbike engines quite often and is caused by a break in the HT coil.

A carbon track forms inside the coil where the wire is broken. When the engine is cold the carbon track has a low resistance and it conducts well enough so the spark is strong enough to start the engine, when the engine is warmer the track resistance is greater and the spark less strong.

This problem gets worse over time as the carbon track gets bigger and bigger, the only remedy is to change the coil or electronic ignition module.

If the previous information was of help to you and you would like to view the entire article please click here .

By having a basic guide when your Lawn Mower wont start when hot may save yourself many hours of anger and disappointment when you find out that it was something as simple as water in the gas that been preventing the mower from starting.

This information may also save you a lot of money by not having to take your mower right away to a small engine mechanic. Remember when ever you are working on your equipment think safety first.

Hope this helps with lawn mower wont start when hot.

“Keep It Simple to Succeed” lets get out there and make our lawns healthy and green!

Return to Home Page from Lawn Mower wont Start when Hot

Go to Do It Yourself Lawn Care

Go to Buy a Lawn Mower

Go to Local Lawn Care Customers

Google