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Pull Rope will not pull

When I pull the start cord, it moves for several inches then does not "turn" the engine. Almost like it is jammed. How do I diagnose?

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Sounds like you need a new switch.

Posted on Oct 20, 2013

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Posted on Jan 02, 2017

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My pull cord won't release, to start engine.


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The pull cord or rope works on a tight spring just under the cover that the rope is in. Usually three to four small bolts on the edge of the cover to remove to repair/replace either the spring or the rope. First I would try to turn the motor manually with your hand on the flywheel, it should move around either direction freely with no effort. If it does not the motor itself maybe stuck not the rope. Then you have a seized engine and a different problem to deal with.

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There could be several reasons for this problem, but sometimes it is in need of a simple cleaning. Remove the 3-4 nuts holding the starter assembly on the top of the engine. Normally you will use a 10mm socket and ratchet to remove them. Turn the starter over in your hand so that you are looking at the starter pulley. Inspect the starter rope and make sure it isn't jammed between the starter pulley and the housing. If it is jammed, grab the starter rope and starter pulley and rotate them both together clockwise until the rope becomes unjammed. If the rope isn't jammed, turn the starter pulley counter clockwise gently. It will probably spring back and draw in the rope. If it retracts the rope slowly, spray WD40 around the bolt in the center of the pulley and work the pulley back and forth until the pulley frees up. If it doesn't free up or this isn't the problem, get back with me and I'll try and walk you through the rest of the repair.

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To replace the pull cord line:

If your pull cord is still attached to the grab handle, it's likely your spring is still wound. Follow this if this is the case, purchase rope of the correct length (or cut) and the correct diameter at your local lawn/garden store, then:
1. Disconnect the long drive shaft by removing the small set screw and the clamp - pull the shaft out of the engine body.
2. Remove the recoil assembly (About 5-5 torx bolts). You may need to disconnect a wire to the kill-switch at this time.
3. Pull the cord until it stops and use a small piece of wood acting as a wedge to jam between the recoil and the housing.
4. Cut the line and pull the knotted terminating end from the hosing.
5. Keep the wedge tight so it does not spin back. If this happens, you will simply need to rewind the spring back (about five turns) and re-wedge it.
6. Feed line through the recoil housing and into the recoil. Pass line through the hole in the recoil and knot the end. Trip to about .25 inch tail. Pull the rope through the grab handle and single or double knot this.
7. Remove the wedge and allow the spring to pull the rope back into the recoil.
8. If it does not completely recoil, either your rope is too long or you will need to add a "wind" to your spring buy removing the line and wind back 1 more turn. Retry.

Good luck!

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1 Answer

The pull rope will not rewind. How do I reset it?


The cord should be removed from the spool entirely, then wind the spool spring CCW for a number of turns making sure the spool can be turned for about 6 turns more (during start). Wedge the spool so that it can't unwind the spring again. If the old cord was about worn out, replace it with fresh. Melt the cord end somewhat so that the knot won't pull out, then tie an overhand knot in the cord end. Feed it into the inner retainer on the spool, then thread the cord around the spool 5 or 6 times in a CCW direction. Once wound, feed the loose end out of the cord port, slide the pull handle on, melt the cord end, and tie an overhand knot on it. Stuff the knot into the handle and release the wedge from the spool so that spring tension pulls the cord tight. Pull the cord out several times to make sure nothing interferes with cord and mechanism, then install on the saw and check the start operation. The spring should never bind-up when the cord is fully extended. Hope this helps!

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You have to find a way to push the starter. It normally gets all stuck due to grease. One push with a screwdriver on the actual starter (The thing the rope turns) should wind the whole cord up. If not, clean it. Alot of oil/chunky-ness gets trapt when your using it.

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try taking plug out to see if it turns then.if not take off pull cord assembley to see if something has come loose and jammed flywheel, failing that could possibly have snapped the piston ring and jammed. oh yes one last thing check clutch if you have chain brake on and clutch is jammed obviously wont turn.

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