Your Honda lawn mower barely chugs along while mowing the lawn. It is acting like it is not getting gas and it’s ready to stall out. It may have already died because of a lack of fuel. There are many reasons that can cause your mower to not get the gas it requires to run.
A Honda lawn mower isn’t getting gas due to a fuel restriction caused by old gasoline in your mower. Old gasoline will clog components including the fuel filter, fuel lines, and carburetor. A fuel restriction may also be caused by a bad gas cap.
I explain all the items that can cause your Honda mower fuel problem along with steps to resolve it.
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Follow all safety instructions provided in your equipment operator’s manual before diagnosing, repairing, or operating. Consult a professional if you don’t have the skills, or knowledge or are not in the condition to perform the repair safely.
Reasons Your Honda Mower Isn’t Getting Gas
Bad or Old Gas
Your Honda mower requires unleaded gasoline with a minimum octane rating of 87 and a maximum ethanol content of 10 percent. Ethanol is a corn-based fuel added to gasoline to make it more environmentally friendly.
Ethanol can have negative effects on your Honda mower’s small engine. Gasoline can begin breaking down as soon as 30 days after purchase.
Ethanol and the moisture it attracts cause gumming in the fuel system and begins to degrade fuel system components. It’s important to use fresh gasoline in your Honda mower.
Use it within 30 days of purchase. If you are unable to use gasoline this quickly, make sure you add a fuel additive to your gasoline to stabilize the fuel.
Because I know the damage running old gasoline can cause to my fuel system, I always treat every tank of gas, plus any extra I have stored, with the fuel additive Sea Foam Motor Treatment.
I use this because it not only stabilizes the gasoline, it also reduces moisture and cleans the fuel system. Read more about the advantages of using Sea Foam in your lawn mower.
Solution: Drain old fuel from your gas tank using a siphon. Fill with fresh gasoline treated with Sea Foam Motor Treatment.
Plugged Fuel Filter
The fuel filter’s purpose is to strain dirt and contaminants from the fuel so they don’t enter the fuel system and the engine. This dirt can cause your fuel filter to become plugged and prevent fuel from passing through the filter.
Solution: Replace a plugged fuel filter. When installing the new fuel filter, make sure the arrow on the side of the fuel filter housing is pointed in the direction of your fuel flow. This means the arrow should be pointed toward the carburetor and away from the fuel tank.
Clogged Fuel Lines
Running old fuel through your mower can leave gummy deposits that can clog your fuel lines. To find a clog, start and stop fuel flow by using the fuel shut-off valve located at the bottom of your fuel tank or crimp the fuel line.
Remove the end, furthest from the fuel tank, of a section of the fuel hose and place it in a container.
Make sure the container is placed lower than the tank because the fuel will not run uphill. Turn your fuel supply on. You should be getting fuel in the container. If you are not seeing a stream of fuel, shut off the fuel supply and remove the section of the hose from your mower.
Solution: With the section of the fuel line, that contains the clog, removed from your Honda mower, spray carburetor cleaner into the line. This should help loosen the blockage. Next, blow compressed air through the line to clear it.
Repeat with the carburetor cleaner and compressed air until the line is free of any obstruction. Reinstall the fuel line. If you are unable to remove the blockage, replace the fuel line with a new line.
The carburetor regulates the right amount of fuel and air needed to form combustion in the cylinder. When it becomes dirty from running old fuel, it can fail to provide fuel to the engine when components in the carburetor become plugged.
After you have checked to make sure you are getting fuel to the carburetor, remove the air filter from the air filter housing. Spray carburetor cleaner into the air intake port and start your Honda mower.
If it starts, runs, and then dies, chances are your carburetor is restricting fuel and it must be cleaned.
Solution: If you don’t mind working with small parts and are a little mechanical, you can disassemble your carburetor to clean it. Follow my step-by-step directions to clean your carburetor in this article.
If you choose not to clean the carburetor yourself, your local small engine mechanic can do this for you. You can also just replace the carburetor assembly.
Clogged Gas Cap
The gas cap on your Honda lawn mower is designed to vent so air can pass through the cap. When the vent is plugged, the gas tank forms a vacuum restricting fuel flow to the engine so your mower will no longer get the fuel it requires to run.
Solution: You can attempt to clean your gas cap to remove the clog or just replace it with a new Honda gas cap.
Keep Your Honda Mower Fuel System Clean
The key to minimizing your fuel system problems is to keep your fuel system clean. This is done by treating fresh fuel with a fuel additive to stabilize the gas. Don’t use an ethanol content higher than 10 percent.
The lower the ethanol content, the better. You may even want to use an ethanol-free fuel sold as recreation fuel (REC-90) at some fuel stations and in 4-cycle fuel cans at your local hardware store.
Replace your fuel filter once a year, typically when performing your annual Honda mower service. A fuel filter is a relatively inexpensive part of your Honda mower that can prevent fuel system and engine problems.
Having Honda Mower Starting Problems?
Checked your fuel system and still have starting problems? There are many items that can cause a starting problem.
Some may even mimic a fuel problem. To read more about all the items that can cause your Honda mower to fail to start, read my article “Solved! Your Honda Lawn Mower Won’t Start”.