I’ve used walk-behind, stand-on, backpack, and handheld blowers, but my favorites are the backpack blower for big jobs and the convenience of a handheld blower for smaller jobs.
Husqvarna offers good backpack and handheld blower options. However, just like any blower, there may be times when it just doesn’t start.
A Husqvarna leaf blower won’t start when the engine isn’t getting sufficient air, fuel, or spark required. This may be caused by a dirty air filter, plugged spark arrestor, clogged fuel line, plugged fuel filter, dirty carburetor, bad spark plug, faulty ignition coil, bad recoil, or old fuel.
Take all safety precautions found in the operator’s manual prior to repairing the blower. This includes removing the spark plug wire. If the blower was previously running, wait for the engine to cool and for all parts to stop moving.
Reasons a Husqvarna Leaf Blower Won’t Start
If you haven’t performed maintenance on your leaf blower in quite a while, you should at least replace the maintenance items at this time. The maintenance items are the air filter, fuel filter and spark plug.
Wrong Choke Setting Causes a Husqvarna Blower Not to Start
The choke must be in the full choke position to start a cold engine. This position closes the choke to restrict the amount of air mixed with fuel to form a combustion.
Depress the purge bulb until you see fuel begin to fill the bulb. Move the choke lever to the full choke (closed) position. Pull the starter handle a few times until the engine sounds like it’s about to start and run.
Move the choke lever 1/2 way between the full choke (closed) and the off choke (open) position. Pull the starter handle until the engine starts and runs. Once the engine is warm, move the lever to the off choke position.
If you fail to close the choke to start a cold leaf Husqvarna blower and open it when it’s warm, the blower will not start or stay running.
Incorrect 2-Cycle Oil Mix Causes a Husqvarna Blower Not to Start
Make sure you use a fuel mix made up of gasoline and oil mixed at a ratio of 50:1. A Husqvarna blower must have oil added to the gas to properly lubricate the two-cycle engine.
Without the right amount of oil added to the gas, the fuel will run very dry and potentially cause the engine to seize and not start.
Adding a straight gas to your leaf blower will result in permanent damage which may result in having to purchase a new Husqvarna leaf blower.
When creating a 50:1 fuel mix for your Husqvarna blower, use unleaded gasoline with a minimum octane rating of 89 (mid-grade) and maximum ethanol content of 10%. Add a 2-cycle premium oil like this oil offered by Husqvarna or an equivalent 2-cycle oil that is ISO-L-EGD and JASO M345 FD certified.
50:1 = 1 gallon of gas + 2.6 fl oz. 2-cycle oil
50:1 = 2.5 gallon of gas + 6.4 fl oz 2-cycle oil
A great option to reduce fuel problems and extend engine life is a pre-mixed fuel like Husqvarna XP or TruFuel. This is an ethanol-free blend of oil and fuel that is ready to pour into your leaf blower’s fuel tank.
You will find more information on the right fuel and how to mix it in “This is the Type of Gas and Oil Husqvarna Leaf Blowers Use“.
Old Fuel and Oil Mix Causes a Husqvarna Blower Not to Start
A lot of types of gasoline you find at the fuel station include ethanol. This is an alternative fuel that is often made from corn or other high-starch plants. This fuel is added to make gas a little environmentally friendly.
While ethanol is a good option when it comes to helping the environment, it is not good to run in your Husqvarna blower. Ethanol can have negative effects on the fuel system and its components including leaving behind gummy deposits and attracting moisture to the fuel.
Fuel degradation may leave behind a varnish that restricts the amount of fuel getting to the engine which may cause the blower to fail to start.
Because of the negative effects of ethanol, never use fuel with an ethanol content greater than 10%. Avoid fuels sold as E15 and E85 as they contain up to 15% and 85% ethanol respectively.
If you have old fuel sitting in your leaf blower for longer than 30 days, drain the fuel tank and fill it with a fresh gas and oil mix. Add a fuel stabilizer like Sea Foam Motor Treatment to stabilize the fuel, clean the fuel system and reduce moisture in the fuel.
Some 2-cycle oils include a fuel stabilizer. Some additives will only stabilize fuel for up to 30 days while others may stabilize it for up to two years. If the oil you choose doesn’t list how long it works to make the fuel stable, don’t assume it will work longer than 30 days.
If you choose to use a pre-mixed ethanol-free fuel, you do not need to add a stabilizer.
Plugged Air Filter Causes a Husqvarna Blower Not to Start
Air is a main requirement to start and keep the engine running. When the air filter becomes plugged with dirt and debris, sufficient air isn’t able to pass through the filter keeping the engine from getting the air it requires to start.
The air filter is a maintenance item that should be checked before operating your Husqvarna blower. The filter is crucial to protecting the engine, but it can also be the cause of overheating and damage if it is plugged.
It must be cleaned if it is dirty and replaced once a year or when it becomes very dirty or damaged. Follow these instructions to clean your type of air filter:
- Clean a Husqvarna blower fiber air filter:
- Clean it by removing it from the housing and brushing off the dirt.
- You can also wash it in a mild dish soap and water solution. Rinse until the water runs clear and lay flat to dry.
- Before reinstalling, wipe out any dirt from the air filter housing and cover.
- Replace a filter that is damaged or very dirty.
- Clean a Husqvarna foam primary filter:
- Remove the foam filter from the air filter housing.
- Wipe out any dirt remaining in the housing and cover. Don’t allow dirt to fall into the air intake.
- Wash the foam filter in a solution of warm water and mild dish detergent.
- Rinse until the water runs clear. Ring the water out of the filter and lay it flat to dry.
- Once dry, cover the filter with engine oil and squeeze out any excess oil. You don’t want it to be dripping with oil. (Only add oil to foam filters that are used as the main filter. If your filter is a pre-filter used in combination with a paper air filter, do not add oil. This will damage the paper filter).
- Install the foam air filter.
- Reattach the air filter cover.
- Clean a Husqvarna backpack blower paper air filter & foam pre-filter:
- Remove the pre-filter and air filter from the housing.
- Wipe out any dirt remaining in the air filter housing and cover. Don’t allow dirt to fall into the air intake.
- Clean the foam pre-filter by washing it in a mild dish detergent and water solution.
- Rinse until the water runs clear. Ring the water out of the filter and lay it flat to dry.
- Inspect the paper air filter. If it is dirty, replace it with a new one. If it is not, you can reuse it.
- Install the air filter and dry the pre-filter.
- Reattach the air filter cover.
If you find your air filter is bad and you don’t have a replacement filter on hand, NEVER operate your blower without one even if it’s only for a short period of time to finish up a job.
Allowing small particles to enter the engine will cause engine wear and damage. That small filter is providing protection to your engine.
Dirty Spark Plug Causes a Husqvarna Blower Not to Start
A dirty spark plug that has a buildup of carbon or oil may prevent the spark needed to start the blower. Cracked porcelain, burnt electrode, incorrect electrode gap, or loose wire can also be the problem.
Remove the spark plug and inspect it. Replace a dirty or damaged spark plug with a new one. Make sure the spark plug is gapped to the manufacturer’s specification and securely attach the spark plug boot.
If the spark plug appears to be in good condition but is a little dirty, you can attempt to clean it using a wire brush.
Plugged Fuel Filter Causes a Husqvarna Blower Not to Start
Like the air filter prevents dirt from entering the air intake, the fuel filter prevents dirt from entering the fuel system.
The fuel filter on a Husqvarna leaf blower can be found inside the fuel tank attached to the fuel line. It strains the fuel as it enters the fuel line to keep any dirt or debris in the fuel tank from getting sucked into the fuel line.
This filter should also be replaced each year for the average homeowner. Check and change your fuel filter by following these steps:
Replace a Husqvarna leaf blower fuel filter:
- Wipe around the fuel cap to keep any dirt from falling into the fuel tank when removing the fuel cap.
- Remove the fuel cap.
- Use a clean bent wire to hook the fuel line and pull the fuel filter out of the tank.
- With one hand securely holding the fuel line and ring clip, pull the filter out of the fuel line with the other hand.
- Install a new fuel filter by inserting the male end into the fuel line making sure the ring clip is securely holding the fuel line to the filter.
- Place the filter in the fuel tank and reinstall the fuel cap.
Bad Primer Bulb Causes a Husqvarna Blower Not to Start
A cracked primer bulb that won’t fill up with fuel won’t function correctly to get fuel to the carburetor. Replace with a new primer bulb.
Clogged Fuel Line Causes a Husqvarna Blower Not to Start
Old fuel sitting in your Husqvarna leaf blower can leave behind gummy sticky deposits that restrict fuel flow. Replace a fuel line in the leaf blower when it is cracked, kinked or clogged.
Plugged Fuel Tank Vent Causes a Husqvarna Blower Not to Start
The fuel tank vent allows air into the tank. Without a vent, the fuel tank will create a vacuum that won’t allow fuel to leave your Husqvarna fuel tank.
A good indication you may have a fuel tank vent problem is when your leaf blower runs for a while and then runs sluggish, shuts down, and won’t start until you remove the fuel cap to allow air into the fuel tank. You may even hear the vacuum release when removing the cap.
It then shuts down again after running for several minutes with the fuel cap in place. The fuel tank vents through the check valve in the fuel cap on most Husqvarna blowers.
Purchase a new fuel cap when you find the old cap is no longer venting properly.
Dirty Carburetor Causes a Husqvarna Blower Not to Start
The carburetor regulates the amount of fuel that is mixed with air to create a combustion in the cylinder. Old fuel will gum up and clog the carburetor so it no longer functions as designed.
If you are a little mechanical you should be able to handle cleaning your carburetor. Clean the carburetor by taking it apart and using carburetor cleaner to clean it.
If the carburetor does not function after being cleaned, you may need to rebuild it or replace it with a new carburetor.
Small engine dealers can also clean it for you. However, find out the labor rate and charge to clean the carburetor. Compare that to a carburetor replacement. The price may not be that different.
Bad Recoil Starter Causes a Husqvarna Blower Not to Start
A recoil is used to start a Husqvarna blower. The string can become unstrung making it hard to start. You may also find a bad pulley; loose or missing spring; or broken clips that will keep the recoil start from working correctly.
You can attempt to replace the spring and restring the recoil. If it does not work because other components in your recoil are damaged, such as the clips or the pulley, you may be better off just replacing the recoil assembly.
Failed Ignition Coil Causes a Husqvarna Blower Not to Start
The winding on the ignition coil can separate and short out. When this happens, the spark plug won’t get the voltage required to create a spark. This will cause your Husqvarna blower to fail to start.
Identify a bad ignition coil using an ohmmeter to check for a break in continuity. Replace the ignition coil if you find a break.
Plugged Spark Arrestor Causes a Husqvarna Blower Not to Start
The spark arrestor is a small screen that can get plugged with soot. A plugged spark arrestor will interfere with airflow which may keep the leaf blower from starting.
Remove the spark arrestor and clean it with a wire brush. If you are unable to clean it sufficiently, replace it with a new spark arrestor.
Flooded Husqvarna Blower Causes It Not to Start
Another problem you may have is flooding the engine after you tried to start it initially. This can happen when the choke is in the closed position and the starter rope was pulled too many times.
It can also happen with the switch off and the starter rope being pulled multiple times or when the primer bulb is pushed too many times.
How to Fix a Flooded Engine on a Husqvarna Leaf Blower
- Turn the switch to the on position.
- Move the choke lever to the open position.
- Press the throttle trigger while pulling the starter rope over and over. This can take anywhere between 5 and 15 pulls before it starts. Your leaf blower engine will sputter first. Continue to pull 2 to 3 more times and it should start.