Riding mower won't start

Hey folks.. I own a 2014 Troy Bilt Bronco riding mower, 17.5 hp Kohler engine w/42" dec k. I have had nothing but problems from it! This time it won't start, or I should say won't stay running, if I spray starting fluid in the carb, it'll start, then stall seconds later and won't start again without another shot of starting fluid.
This mower was bought new in 2014! the thing has been broke down more than its been used! I used it the first summer, had problems then, and they sent another one. Cut the grass once last yr and the belt broke! it would run but not move. Because I'm disabled I couldn't fix it until this past weeken d, so it sat all last yr!
However, I have never left gas in it over the winter......almost did! lucki ly we had a mild winter because I had forgot and didn't let it run out unt il like Nov last yr...at that point, I started it and let it run until it r an out of gas. We got the belt on this weekend ! NOT FUN! but now it'll only start with a shot of starting fluid in the carb, and only stays running until it is bur ned off.... I'm hoping its the gas filter, its got a bunch of gunk in it, but when I re move the gas line, gas passes threw, maybe that gunk all clogs the filters screen under pressure? ...I can't find it locally, but thinking as long a s the specs match I could find one that would work. Any other ideas on the problem? sure hope it isn't the carb! this new it sh ouldn't be.....Thanks for any help! PS..replaced the Fuel filter, no luck..but I notice the carb is dry, but th ere's gas in the filter, though that may just be gravity?
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On Tue, 6 Jun 2017 14:35:51 -0700 (PDT), snipped-for-privacy@gmail.com wrote:

= I'm hoping its the gas filter, its got a bunch of gunk in it,
... ' nuff said. Methinks. John T.
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On Tue, 6 Jun 2017 14:35:51 -0700 (PDT), snipped-for-privacy@gmail.com wrote:

You've got gunk in the carb. Did you use etanol gas? If so likely has a case of "greenies" Perhaps the float valve is stuck. Check the float bowl drain - or mabee just rap the carb with a big screwdriver handle a few times - - -
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That's what my buddy and I think...I've traced gas from tank to carb, got g as until it reaches the carb. Carb is bone dry, and no gas dripping in when it starts....(have to use starting fluid ) stalls as soon as the starting fluid burns off.
Thing is this doesn't have a normal carb bowl, it had a small electronic pa rt on the bottom? With a green connection that just hangs there? It looks l ike it should plug into something, but I can't see where...going to check d iagrams now....thanks people, y'all rock!
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On Wed, 7 Jun 2017 05:42:06 -0700 (PDT), snipped-for-privacy@gmail.com wrote:

That is an electric pilot valve which MUST have power for the engine to run. Remove it and the bowl to see if the bowl is dry. If so, the needle is stuck or plugged. If not, put 12 volts to the pilot and see what happens. (or get a main jet/bolt from a similar carb without the pilot valve)
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Just posted what I hope is the problem....I'll post back once I can get at!! Man its frustrating knowing how to do something in your mind or needing to...and your body says NO! At least I'm here to give it what I can! Peace
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Troy Bilt calls it a after fire solenoid..basically keeps it from backfiring if I am understand it correctly. I could see a ground wire hanging, we must have knocked it loose replacing the belt lol Can't make the fix until my buddy helps flip it, but hopefully that's the last problem! Thanks for the help!
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On Wed, 7 Jun 2017 09:55:47 -0700 (PDT), snipped-for-privacy@gmail.com wrote:

it shuts off the fuel so it will not continue to run after it is shut off with the phrottle open -after-run, or Deiseling. or afterfire - basically running with no spark - which CAN also cause them to "run backwards" when shut off, pouring smoke out the carb
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That be it! And looks like its back to the carb being clogged...seems that green connector just sits there, it must be connected, and I just cant see it,its in a real tight spot of course. But from what I can see it looks more like that it may pigtail out of the connection.
Diagram doesn't show that, but from talking to Troy Bilt they said some of the motors do have wires that do not connect....they were checking into mine, but never called back, guessing in the am. Gotta figure out how to remove that carb bowl....guessing I can't clean what's stuck or clogged in that carb without removing? Can I get to the needle? The after fire solenoid throws me off.... Thanks... Peace
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What do you think of bypassing it? And thinking back the thing backfired once, scared the shit outta me lol Possible it went bad? Going to start taking it apart to clean carb and needle, if its got one?
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On Thu, 8 Jun 2017 06:06:00 -0700 (PDT), snipped-for-privacy@gmail.com wrote:

Have you checked for tightness the carb to manifold mounting bolts? The problem you describe sounds like a vacuum leak. Checking the tightness of the mounting bolts is cheap and easy.
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On Thu, 8 Jun 2017 06:06:00 -0700 (PDT), snipped-for-privacy@gmail.com wrote:


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VvKM5tMScgI

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gQw2pQ_oa6o

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=juONBfrhS-A

and a dozen or more other u-tubes show you how to bodge it.
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Nope, regular gas.
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On Wed, 7 Jun 2017 05:43:03 -0700 (PDT), snipped-for-privacy@gmail.com wrote:

Regular gas with ethanol can cause all kind of problems. Up here I run Shell Premium in all my small engines as it does NOT have ethanol.
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Gotta shell around the corner, I'll check on that, good thing is its daily new with really low hours lol I was to sick to repair it last year, but ran it, and ran cleaner through it as I ran it dry last yr, looks clean, but there's a lot I can't see... thanks for the help!
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Fairly new lol
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On 6/6/2017 5:35 PM, snipped-for-privacy@gmail.com wrote:

If you get 2 years out of a tool you buy at McLowes you're doing good. Time for a new one, I think.
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A new one? Brother I live on 1100 a month! This thing hasn't got 50 hours on it! Didn't use it but once last yr before the belt broke, in was only used from late July thru Sept the yr before.... So it was used for a season and a half! I know we are a throw away society but C'mon man!
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On 06/07/2017 08:50 PM, snipped-for-privacy@gmail.com wrote:

Facts:
1. Tall grass breaks McLawnmowers. Don't overstress your McLawnmower by letting the grass grow more than an inch between cuttings.
2. Garage it. Don't store it outside in the rain.
3. And for the love of God, don't store it with ethanol gas in the tank. Ethanol gas is evil.
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So if I bought a Troy Bilt elsewhere, it would run better...yeah, OK bro lol
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