2-Stroke Power Tool Services
2-Stroke Engine Power Tool Problems
Domestic, Garden and Commercial Petrol-Engined Power Tools
2-Strokes - Love 'Em or Hate 'Em
2-stroke engine power tools, when properly looked after, can give years of efficient, reliable service. Talk to most professional gardeners, tree surgeons or building contractors, and they will often speak very favourably of their petrol powered equipment. A well maintained 2-stroke, in good condition, should start on a couple of pulls from cold, and without hesitation once warm.
Two-stroke engines are generally seen to be great when they are running properly - and a bit of a nightmare when they are not!
The purpose of this page is to identify some of the very common issues that cause 2-stroke engine problems like not starting; running with no real power; running badly or; running for a short time and then stopping.
Because a lot of 2-stroke engine powered tools are very cheap to buy there is often a tendency to dump rather than fix. A sad situation, particularly when, in most cases, there is very little wrong.
2-Stroke Engine Basics
Other than feeling some compression when pulling the starter cord, a two-stroke needs:
Fresh fuel - at the right mix
Believe it or not, it’s as simple as that!
Two-Stroke Engine Won’t Start
Is there fresh fuel - at the right mix - in the tank?
Is the ignition switch on?
Is the plug clean with the correct gap?
Is the plug sparking when ‘grounded’?*
Did you notice if the spark plug was wet?
Is the air filter clean and free from dust and debris?
Has the machine been serviced?
* ‘Grounded’ means the plug is touching a metal part of the engine when you pull the engine over.
To avoid getting an electric shock from the plug lead, hold the plug down with a plastic-handled tool or wear gloves.
If you work through the questions to ensure you have the Basics covered, hopefully, your engine might start. If not, be prepared to look into it more deeply** or take it to a skilled repairer. Obviously, if your machine is under guarantee, take it back to your supplier.
** This page cannot take you into all of the more technical areas to check, however, if you are fairly mechanically confident, I would recommend searching for a relevant YouTube video that shows you some of the next steps.
2-Stroke Engine Starts But Runs Badly or Stops
The cause of this type of malfunction can be any number of things but let’s look at some of the more obvious ones:
Is there fresh fuel in the tank?
Is the spark plug fairly new?
Is the plug clean and set to the correct gap?
Have the jet screws on the carb been fiddled with?
Are the mechanical parts of the machine itself free to run
Has the machine been serviced?
“Has The Machine Been Serviced?”
I include this question because 2-stroke engine servicing is so often overlooked. In the hands of a competent local service technician, pretty much all parts of the machine will be stripped and checked, with new parts fitted as seen fit.
Once complete they will run up your machine, tune the carb and ensure that you have easy starting and full power.
Other Possible Causes of Not Starting or Poor Running
I don’t recommend that you go looking any further unless you are fairly mechanically competent because stripping out parts of the engine, other than those mentioned above, needs a level of understanding and expertise. However, some of the common causes for issues are:
Blocked carb jet
Punctured or elderly carb diaphragm
Split primer bulb
Stuck or ‘ringed’ carb inlet needle
Blocked exhaust spark guard
Choked up exhaust port
For machines still under guarantee which are not working properly, take them back to the dealer or supplier. With older machines, take it to your local 2-stroke machinery specialist who will possibly suggest, after checking your machine over, that a full service will clear your problems.
I run a private 2-stroke service and repair workshop near Ely, Cambridgeshire and offer a range of services connected with 2-stroke engine powered equipment at very reasonable rates. I am always happy to help.
Please Note: Most engine and machinery parts are fairly easy to obtain, however, on occasion there can be a considerable delivery delay.
Thankyou for contacting me.
I will get back in touch with you soon.
Neil Ford trading as 2 Stroke Power Tool Services, Ely, Cambridge