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I just bought a new Troy Bilt TB110 lawn mower. When I go to start it, the started cord only pulls out about a foot and then won't pull any farther. Am I retarded, or is it broken?

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The exact same thing happened to me. I was about to bring it back to the store, but was able to figure it out. The black frame that holds the bag has two bolts that screw in at the bottom. Look for the black nobs. Unscrew both, pull the frame out 8 inches until it lines up with the new hole and insert screws and tighten. Cord will then pull normally. I have no idea why they do this and it's not in the manual, but there was a confusing sign on the engine that illustrates this procedure. Annoying, but an easy fix.

Posted on Mar 25, 2015

  • garrett bennett
    garrett bennett Apr 25, 2015

    OMG! Thank you! Same situation - I bought it and took it out of the box and assembled everything and couldn't get it to start. I figured something had to be locking it or preventing the pull chord from working so I was questioing the handle etc. About to lose my mind reading over the directions -- They need to have some kind of IMPORTANT! Please Read this before attempting to start. It is an easy fix & I tried a hundred google searches until I stumbled onto your post! Thank you!

  • Luke Thompson Mar 18, 2017

    Dude thanks! Same situation and what you suggested worked! Thank you!


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This sounds like there is a locking effect from liquid gas in the cylinder which partially vapourizes, holding the piston down so the force on the rope would be super human to make it complete the stroke. Let it cool and pull the spark plug out with the spark plug wrench, flush with an empty dish soap squirt bottle and a tiny bit of gas (may be some shipping grease in there), then tip the motor to get the piston drained right out, crank the starter and it should spit the flooded gas out the plug hole. Dry everything with a cloth and let it evaporate away for 15 minutes. Now the chord should feel "longer". Now assemble and start it with less "choking". For whatever reason this use to happen a lot with the old Briggs & Stratton five horse lawnmowers too. Caution! If you really want to be retarded, keep pulling and the rubber handle will be snapped right out of your hand as you force a back-fire (Diesel type compression detonation). I did this once and never again, your fingers get almost dislocated and of course the recoil starter breaks as it is not supposed to fire backwards.

Posted on Apr 11, 2011

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  • Flawlis1 Jun 03, 2011

    Same thing happened to me the best way to fix it is make sure the handle bar is pulled all the way out the blade hit it and that's why rope will not extend more than a foot out. Well i hope this helps.

  • krd2003 Aug 31, 2011

    Before removing the spark plug try lifting up the mowerto check and see if there are 2 bars obstructing the mower blade. These belong to the push handle. If there are the 2 bars you'll notice the blade is hitting them. Remove the 2 wing tip bolts at the base of the handle (they are facing the engine) then pull the handle out about 12 inches and secure them again. Then turn the mower blade counter clockwise a few times, this loosens the pull on the cord. Then finish assembling as instructed

  • djveazey
    djveazey Jul 03, 2014

    Same thing happen ,I removed the shroud on the pull string cover.Look under the winding for the string the spring assembly is made of plastic.Pulling too hard on the string while in uncut grass tore the plastic and caused the string to come out and get stuck.

  • Rob Clowers
    Rob Clowers May 10, 2017

    My TB110 cord was also getting stuck so when I began removing the three bolts that attach the recoil starter unit the cord broke free. I then cleaned and inspected for any cause but found none, I then replaced and tightened the three bolts, only to find the rope stuck again. My solution for now is that I back the three bolts off about 1 half to 1 full turn to free up the rope from binding. Then once started retighten the bolts. It works but my next step is to find three washers and place them between the recoil starter assembly and the mounting bracket so when I tighten the bolts it should sit high enough to not bind.



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