electric wire short on my Lawnmower

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The wire that leads to the switch on my lawn mower seems to have a short. I press the start switch and nothing happens. I grab that wire that leads to it and then press the switch and it starts. I am having difficulty in finding that short..The first thing i look for is a torn cover section which i do not see any of....any good way of finding this that i have overlooked? Thanks
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Anthony wrote:

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On 4/9/2011 3:06 PM, Sjouke Burry wrote:

Every electrical problem in the world is a short to the novice. Just add some wire and make it long again.
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Could u elaborate on that statement? Its confusing to this novice. It is not the 25' wire that is plugged into the outlet and the mower that is at fault its the wire on the mower from the motor to the switch. How does one add wire to that? And what does this have to do with the length?
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I think Tony was poking fun . Perhaps what he meant was to look into replacing the piece of wire involved, it can't be very long on a mower.
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On 4/10/2011 3:57 PM, Anthony wrote:

LOL. Sorry, I was being half truthful and half sarcastic. To the novice an actual broken wire that isn't completing the circuit is called a "short". But in real life it isn't a short, it's an "open". If it had a short it would be sparking and popping circuit breakers. Actually now knowing it's an electric lawn mower "the 25' wire that is plugged into the outlet and the mower" is what tipped me off, an open, or break in the wire could also spark as it touches intermittently but it's doubtful it would trip a circuit breaker. And the length, just part of a dumb joke were the customer tells the electrician "if it's just a short, why don't you lengthen it"?
But the good part is that you gave some more information, I hope I'm not the only person who thought the mower was gasoline powered engine and the wire in question is one that often shorts out the magneto to stop the spark plug from sparking.
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On Sat, 09 Apr 2011 11:42:05 -0700, Anthony wrote:

Probably the switch. When you move the wires you may move the insides of the switch.
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OK, so do I examine the switch and what should i look for ? A wire that is not connected to a terminal of that switch? Its an old lawnmower but still can get the job done and not worth getting to pay an electrician to find the cause and correct. I was planning on giving it to family member.
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On 4/9/2011 5:54 PM, Anthony wrote:

As everybody else says, far more likely it's an open, not a short and unlikely it's the innards of the switch.
Start w/ each wire from the switch, remove one end and measure continuity from there to the other. Move the wire a little to try to reproduce the fault.
Undoubtedly, one of them either has a break or the connector is failing and intermittent.
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On 4/9/2011 3:54 PM Anthony spake thus:

That, or more likely something loose within the switch itself, in which case you'll have to replace it. (Or not: conceivably, you could bypass the switch and let the mower run whenever it's plugged in, which of course wouldn't be quite so safe ...)
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On 4/9/2011 6:05 PM, David Nebenzahl wrote:

If the wire weren't connected at all there's no way that simply jiggling the switch would make any difference.
As he says, it's either the connection itself is intermittent at one end or the other or there's a break in the wire that flexing it causes it to make contact or similar.
I'd put the internals of the switch fairly far down; not impossible, but check the external stuff first.
And, of course, you can do continuity checks across the terminals of the switch to ensure the switch does make contact when turned to "run" and "start" positions (assuming electric start).
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On Sat, 09 Apr 2011 16:05:06 -0700, David Nebenzahl

switch. About 90%+ with those symptoms were broken wires between the plug and the switch. Another common problem (different symptoms) is the wire broken near the bottom of the handle where it flexes when you move the handle.
I would not rule out the switch - but I'd check the wires and connectors in that area (between plug and switch) first.
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If there's only one wire it could be, depending on how you value your time, it may be cheaper to just oder the switch and the wire and replace both rather than spend time diagnosing it (since the end result will almost certainly be that you have to replace one of the two anyway).
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snipped-for-privacy@snyder.on.ca wrote:

I bet it's a loose disconnection. <G>
Jeff
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wrote:

It's probably an open, and it confuses the situation when you assume it's a short. Lots of people don't know the difference.
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On 4/9/2011 1:52 PM mm spake thus:

Yep. Shorts (short for "short circuit") tend to cause things like sparks, smoke and fire. An open may crackle a little bit, but mostly causes frustration.
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On Apr 9, 4:59pm, "Stormin Mormon"

Most of us thnk David is competent, even if he is a little short-fused once in a while. But aren't we all???
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wrote:

Maybe it's a Short Open, or an Open Short.... Maybe it's not short at all, but it's Long. In which case it could be a Long Open, or a long closed. Not to be confused with a long short or a Closed long Open short. Of course the guy who posted this might be wearing nothing but his SHORTS and his p____ is even shorter..... Which of course would then be a shorted man with a short p____ in his open or closed shorts. Heaven forbid he gets that lawnmower running or his short p____ might get even more short.
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wrote:

or more likely a broken wire.
You need an ohm-meter and you need to know how to use it.
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On Sat, 09 Apr 2011 17:56:04 -0400, snipped-for-privacy@snyder.on.ca wrote:

Cost of Ohm Meter $19.99 Cost of college education to learn to use it $78,950 Cost of replacement wire for mower $0.69 Cost of electrical tape to connect the wire $1.59
Total cost of repairs $78,972.27
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