Chainsaw won't start after repair attempt


Old 06-06-18, 11:20 AM
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Chainsaw won't start after repair attempt


I have a Poulan 34cc chainsaw that ran poorly until I repaired it, and now does not run at all.

At first it started but stalled almost immediately. I replaced the fuel line and fuel filter and it improved things a little.
Then it started, ran, but stalled when I gave it gas. I tried adjusting the H setting and it ran wonderfully... until I turned it off. I haven't been able to start it since then.

Since then I have:
- replaced the gas
- thrown it a little bit of additive ("starts your engine in 15 minutes!") for good measure
- cleaned the carburetor - the little mesh filter inside was all goo'ed up, it is all clean now
- checked for compression (thumb test - I can't measure it but I can tell it's there)
- verified that I get a spark (affirmative)
- checked through the muffler opening that the piston and ring are not scored (not that I can tell)
- even thrown a little bit of starter fluid in the spark plug cavity

The best I've gotten since then is maybe 1/2 second of sputter, but usually it's just nothing. I do see however a tiny bit of smoke coming out of the muffler.

Local small engine repair guy won't touch it because "you can buy a new Poulan for $250 so it's not worth fixing it". But since 1) I don't have $250 to spend on replacing something that potentially still has some life in it and 2) I would like to learn more about fixing small engines, I'd rather try to understand what's going on. At this stage though, I am running out of ideas, and I don't want to buy a whole new carburetor if that's not where the problem is.

Any advice on how to diagnose the problem would be very helpful... Thanks in advance!
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Old 06-06-18, 12:27 PM
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When you adjusted the H, how did you adjust it? If you got it set too lean and then ran it, you may have toasted the cylinder. You can remove the muffler and look in the cylinder and piston for scoring.
Old 06-06-18, 12:34 PM
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With the chainsaw on, I turned the H CCW until I could increase the throttle without it sputtering / stalling.

I did check for damage on the piston and rings through the muffler, but couldn't see any (visible) scoring. As for the inside of the cylinder, that I cannot tell.
Old 06-06-18, 07:45 PM
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A whole new carb for one these is about $25.00 and not worth the time to take apart and try to just use a repair kit or clean.
If the filter was gunked up the rest of the tiny ports are also "gunked" up,
99% of the time with DIY gas powered low use equipment it's a fuel issue.
Use only non ethanol fuel!
It's avalible everywhere.
if it's not going to be used for a while dump out the fuel and let it run until it runs out of fuel.
Old 06-06-18, 07:47 PM
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Is the spark plug electrode black and shiny, black and powdery, grey and dry, or tan? With the plug out, give it full throttle and no choke and pull the rope several times, then put the plug back in and give it full throttle and no choke and pull several more times and see if it will start. If not, choke it and see.
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