I am a man who was taught to take very good care of his tools, but I seem to have slipped up. My lawnmower is dying by stages. The current problems (which are related, I suspect) are as follows:
A) The ones I think I understand:
1- The thing gets way too easily clogged with grass clippings. The chute and hole seem almost to inhibit egress, and the mower chokes and dies far too frequently. I’m a conscientious mower and never have more than a half-inch to an inch or so (excluding scatterred weeds) to mow: can I stop the hole from filling up, or is this a design flaw that will necessitate a new mower?
2- The above problem is exacerbated by the fact that I live in Florida and therefore my lawn during the summer months is never completely dry or firm. Wet grass and soft ground clogs mowers faster; but so does high grass and bumpy ground, which is what you get while waiting for your lawn to dry. Any suggestions?
B) The ones I don’t understand.
3- The mower performed fine (except for the clogging problem) for a year, then began sputtering and failing to start. I cleaned the air filter, changed the oil and replaced the spark plug, all according to the manual. Problem solved, for a little while. But now the spark plug is fouling with soot almost instantly (say, 10 hours or half a dozen starts, whichever comes first). Cleaning/replacing the sparkplug/cleaning the socket solves the problem, except for the sputtering, for 3-4 starts and/or 5 hours. At this point, the air and fuel filters are spotless. Lumpy as my lawn is, the mower is set to rise above it. Oil gauge is fine, but the engine burns a little oil every now and then…
4- For the first time,yesterday, mowing a short, dry, easy lawn at a slow speed, for once with no clogging problems, fouled the blade housing.
Okay, guys: it’s a fairly powerful (6.5 hp) gas-driven push-mower. I’m not mechanically talented, but I can follow instructions if they’re clear enough. I’d appreciate any advice, even from non-lawyers (just a joke, folks!).