Puzzling Lawm Mower Problem

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I have a TORO "Recycler" Electric Start Mower, model 20018. The mower starts fine - with the key - when cold. The Mower runs fine either hot or cold.
After its run for a short time, it will no longer start with the key. The battery is fine and the starter motor rotates the flywheel , but its as if there is either no Gas or No Spark.
Here's the puzzling fix. If I pull the cord, slowly and easily, without even trying to start it, it will then start with the key.
If its shut off, it will again be necessary to give the cord a short and easy pull, before it will again start with the key.
I have replaced the plug, the coil assbly, and have checked the kill switch.
Anyone have an idea as to what the problem may be ??
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snipped-for-privacy@carploin.com wrote:

Hi, What if you remove fuel tank cap when trying start? Or spray cold water around gas lines, tank and carb?
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wrote:

Thanks for your reply. Removing the gas cap didn't help. I haven't tried cooling the area you mentioned.
I can try that but not sure its an issue as the engine starts with the key immediately after pulling once on the cord.
Pulling once on the cord before turning the key is doing something to resolve the issue.
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On Sun, 17 Jun 2012 15:14:03 -0400, snipped-for-privacy@carploin.com wrote:

Let me make sure I understand this, if instead of pulling easily on the cord you simply try and use the electric start, which also turns the engine in the same direction, that won't make it start....
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wrote:

Let me try to clarify - hopefully I will do a better job this time.
Using the cord would eventually start the mower when hot, but my wife uses the mower and does not want to pull the cord to make it run. That's why I bought the electric start.
As a workaround, she will pull the cord gently if that will allow her to start it with the key. According to her, pulling the cord in that manner requires no effort, where trying to pull it to make it start does, especially if she has to pull it a few times. I am not about to argue, since she does cut the lawn.
In the morning, with a cold start and fully charged battery, and after pressing the primer bulb - slowly - three times, the mower starts immediately with the key.
I did a test this morn - per tony & dpb's suggestions. After it is run a short time - for about a minute - and then stopped for about a minute, it will not start with the key (it revs but does not start). If the cord is pulled once, it will then start with the key. If its left for about 15 minutes, and then primed, it will start with the key again (without pulling the cord).
The following was done: Cleaned Carburetor, Replaced Carb Bowl Gasket and Washer, Replaced Carb Seat, Needle and checked & adjusted Float, Replaced Magneto Assbly (Tecumseh "Lamination") & Adjusted Gap, Repalced Spark Plug, Cleaned Engine Fins & Externals thoroughly, Dumped Gas, Cleaned Tank & added new Gas, Changed Oil.
After all of the above, the engine ran much better (no missing), but did not change the original Hot Start w/Key problem.
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On 6/18/2012 11:00 AM, snipped-for-privacy@carploin.com wrote: ...

I don't see the real suggested test(s)... :)
a) after hot and doesn't start, before the pull test cool down the carb area (spray w/ hose will work) and then try the starter, or
b) let it really cool off (by itself it'll take perhaps as long as an hour if really warm) w/o doing anything else.
I forget about the stupid prime buttons--nothing I have is that new if that small :)
Is it being used when trying to start hot? If so, possibly it's flooding it out instead of a vapor lock.
--
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_________
See above - I thought I followed your suggestion "b" by only running it for about a minute. I then tried the key start, which didn't work. Then I let it cool for about 15 minutes and it started with the key, the same way it would start when cool.
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On Jun 19, 6:35am, snipped-for-privacy@carploin.com wrote:

Your problem has me puzzled as much as you. It sounds like an electrical problem, not a fuel problem. I am not familiar with your mower but I would check for spark while cranking before you pull the cord, if you haven't already done this. Some have low oil sensors and other safety switches. Good luck and let us know if you find the problem.
Hank
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On Mon, 18 Jun 2012 12:00:07 -0400, snipped-for-privacy@carploin.com wrote:

Maybe your wife is having an affair with the guy at the mower repair shop, and she wants an excuse to get him over to the house :)
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On Mon, 18 Jun 2012 12:00:07 -0400, snipped-for-privacy@carploin.com wrote:

Does this thing by any chance have a compression release system of some sort on it to make it easy to pull start? If so, perhaps that's sticking in the released position and when you pull the cord it resets it. When it won't start with the electric starter does it turn over REALLY fast compared to when it does start with the starter?
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snipped-for-privacy@carploin.com wrote:

Hi, What if you remove fuel tank cap when trying to start? Or spray cold water around gas lines, tank and carb?
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On Sunday, June 17, 2012 9:47:14 AM UTC-7, (unknown) wrote:

Please correct me if Im wrong but I dont see a fuel filter in the parts list. Does it have a fuel filter?
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On Sun, 17 Jun 2012 10:31:48 -0700 (PDT), snipped-for-privacy@gmail.com wrote:

Not that I'm aware of.
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On Sunday, June 17, 2012 12:15:51 PM UTC-7, (unknown) wrote:

Especially since your lawnmower does not have a fuel filter, I suspect that the carburetor/metering device/fuel discharge orifice is partially blocked. That would be the next place that the gasoline goes to after leaving the fuel tank but before reaching the combustion chamber where the spark plug is. My guess is that when the lawn mower is running there is enough pressure to keep the fuel flowing as when you pull the cord slowly you are causing enough suction to overcome the blockage. You will need to open the location where the fuel metering orifice is and clear the blockage. It would also be a good idea to install a fuel filter
http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/31oOjgniCkL.jpg
to the fuel line. Even if this is not the reason why you are having the problem, I guarantee that without a fuel filter you will have this problem in the future.
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On Sun, 17 Jun 2012 15:15:51 -0400, snipped-for-privacy@carploin.com wrote:

There should be a dip tube in the gas tank, and there is sometimes a filter on the bottom of it.
Here's another thing to try. If you have an old mower with a gas tank, mount that tank on something next to your mower, run a gas line from that tank to your carb. If it starts normally, you have a fuel tank or line clog. If not, it's deeper in the engine.
Another thing, are you getting a spark when that starter is spinning? They sell spark testers, or just take off the plug wire and hold a screwdriver in the hole and 1/8 inch from any metal part of the engine. You should see a spark. If you do, it's a gas problem. If not, it's electrical.
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On Tue, 19 Jun 2012 00:38:09 -0500, snipped-for-privacy@thecave.com wrote:

No dip tube on a Tecumseh

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On 6/17/2012 11:47 AM, snipped-for-privacy@carploin.com wrote:

First guess--vapor lock.
Think Tony's thinking same thing.
If you let it cool w/o doing anything, it will then start just fine again, right?
Look into adding some reflective tape or a heat shield around the fuel line between hot engine parts and the line...
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I haven't tried just letting it cool or spraying the areas mentioned. I'll do that tomorrow and let you know.
What I can't understand is what pulling the cord (without starting) does that the starter motor doesn't ?? The only difference I can see is that the cord revs the flywheel from the top and the starter motor revs it from the flywheel teeth below - both in the same clockwise direction.
I can let that starter motor run for at least 5 seconds and it won't start, and repeat that many times to no avail, but when I just give one pull on the cord (without starting) the electric start will then work after only one or two revs.
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On 6/17/12 2:32 PM, snipped-for-privacy@carploin.com wrote:

Speed?

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On 6/17/2012 2:32 PM, snipped-for-privacy@carploin.com wrote: ...

My bet is the slow manual pull doesn't cause accelerator pump to actuate and lets vapor pressure drop whereas the high-speed (relatively) cranking doesn't (enough, anyway).
The cooling test will be pretty conclusive whether the supposition is right or not.
There's always a possibility there's some other heat-related issue but that it acts as it does and you've replaced parts that are most likely it seems a lower probability at least until the alternative is eliminated from consideration.
--
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