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My neighbor gave me a Poulan mower that doesn't work. I am trying to trace the problem but don't really know what I am doing. It doesn't start. It has a new spark plug that I can only assume is gapped right. I have emptied the gas tank and put in new gas. I have pumped the primer 3 times, as stated near the primer, and the primer works as far as I can tell. But It won't start... not even for 1 second. I don't know if the spark plug is sparking or whether or not any power is getting to the spark plug to create a spark. How do I check to see if the spark plug is sparking? If it isn't producing a spark..then what?

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Sounds like you grounded it ok. Don't assume the new spark plug is gapped correctly, check the manual or call the parts store and ask what the gap should be. Keep in mind that it's possible that a new plug is bad, maybe try another? Definitely make sure the safety switch / handle / whatever is engaged. If still no spark you may have a bad coil / module.

Posted on Jun 04, 2014

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Remove plug, with plug wire connected to plug ground plug to the head and pull you should see a spark. If not if your mower has safety swithes you may have to jump around them.Or relace ignition unit. If you got a spark, try putting a little gas in the spark plug hole before putting plug in. If it pops then you probably have a fuel problem.

Posted on Sep 28, 2010

  • MAKitchen Sep 29, 2010

    Thank you very much for your reply. I know very little about small machines or anything mechanical...but I don't think I am beyond learning. I did my best to 'ground plug to the head' but not sure if I did it correctly. I have posted a picture of what I have done to a personal web site of mine if anyone wants to take a look to see if I grounded the spark plug or not http://www.mkreflections.com/lawnmower/t... After grounding the spark plug I turned off the lights in my garage and pulled on the starting chord but was unable to see a spark. If I didn't ground the spark plug correctly (wrapped one end of a wire around the threaded end of the spark plug and the other end of the wire I wrapped around a bolt I had loosened, and then tightened the bolt back up), what do I need to do to ground it.

    If I did ground it correctly and saw no spark...what's my next task?

    Again, thanks for the first response and thanks to anyone that helps.

    I

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