Tip & How-To about Craftsman 42 in. Deck 19.5hp Lawn Tractor

Riding Mower No Start Troubleshooting

  • First check the air filter to see if it getting air and gas.
  • Check your gas cap. If your gas cap is clogged, your fuel tank can get a vapor lock, and you will have no gas flow. Loosen the gas cap to see if it will run longer.
  • Check the gas filter (if you have one on the mower) to be sure it is clean and has good gas flow.
  • Check to see if you are getting spark at the plug. Check out the video below.


If the engine clicks but will not start, the battery or solenoid is often to blame. To find the battery on a riding lawn mower:

  • The battery may be under the hood
  • The battery may be located under the seat
  • You may need to lift the hood to find the solenoid
  • Check the owner's manual for the battery or solenoid location

Check to see that all wires are securely connected and that the terminals are clean.


If the lawn mower still does not start, the problem may be with the fuel, if it was left in the mower over the winter months the fuel may have become stale or watered.. If the fuel appears dirty or contains water, you will need to drain the fuel tank and replace with fresh gasoline.

Other reasons for the mower not to starting also include:

  • Damaged or loose wiring
  • Problems in the carburetor
  • Maladjusted or damaged engine valves
  • A blown fuse
  • Ignition switch may be faulty

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