It depends upon what brand of engine you have on the mower but the most common one that seems to the most confusion with its owners is the Briggs & Stratton so here is the directions for them direct from the Briggs & Stratton web-site:
This is a relatively simple process, but you have to be VERY
careful when doing this. The spring is long, under some tension and has
sharp edges. Anytime you are dealing with the manual rewind starter
assembly, there is risk of the spring coming out and possibly injuring
yourself or others. If you do not feel comfortable performing this
repair, I strongly suggest visiting one of our many authorized dealers
in your area and have them do this for you.
You will have to remove the gas tank to get at the rewind and
blower housing. Remove the entire blower housing and rewind assembly
and turn it upside down.
You do not have to drill out the rivets to get to the
back of the rewind assembly. This is only necessary if you are removing
rewind assembly, (metal housing and all) and are separating it from the blower housing.
You'll need a pair of vise grips or a screw driver, some rewind
rope, a long thin sharp tip flexible object (the wire from a coat
hanger may work) and a lighter handy.
- Take the pulley and start to turn it so that the rope becomes loose.
- Remove the rope.
- Once the pulley is all the way out, with the most tension,
either use the screwdriver between the spokes of the pulley, or use the
vise grips to hold the pulley in place; be careful not to place too
much pressure on the vise grips, the plastic pulley may break!
- Make sure that the hole in the pulley lines up with the hole on the rewind assembly.
- Using the wire from the coat hanger, push the rope through the
hole of the rewind and pulley. Pull the rope through the pulley and tie
it off. Now use the lighter to burn the end of the rope to prevent the
not from coming off.
- Now, remove the screwdriver or vise grips, while holding on to the pulley.
- SLOWLY let go of the pulley and the rope should feed back into the pulley as you do this.
If you are unsure how to do this, I suggest consulting a Briggs
& Stratton Authorized Dealer located in your area. Your Briggs
& Stratton Authorized Dealer has all the information relating to
Briggs & Stratton warranty information, replacement
engines, short blocks, parts, pricing, service/repair, specifications, etc.