Why Won’t Craftsman Weedwacker Won’t Start
With an electric weedwacker, you would primarily worry about ensuring that the battery pack is fully charged or the power cord is properly plugged and powered. However, with a gas-powered Craftsman weedwacker or string trimmer, you must consider other parts such as the carburetor.
Not only should you consider the state of parts such as the carburetor but you will also have to consider the machine’s fuel source.
Since your gas-powered Craftsman requires a mixture of gas and oil, you should also consider how long the powered tool has been sitting since you began using it once again.
You must consider how long the gas-powered Craftsman weedwacker has been sitting since the gas and oil you must use for the machine can actually become stale if it does sit for too long.
Another aspect of a gas-powered weedwacker or string trimmer that must be considered when troubleshooting is if the engine might be flooded or not, which is another unique but also possibly problematic part of a gas/oil-fueled Craftsman weedwacker.
It is also important to keep in mind that a weed wacker such as yours that runs on gas, which is consumed and used by the motor, is still a motor. Sure, it may be a much smaller motor than the one that is in your car or truck but it is a motor nonetheless.
This means that you must also consider other critical points that the motor requires in order to work correctly. One of these parts is the air filter, which is a part that could cause problems if it is not cleaned or replaced regularly.
Another part that a motor requires to run properly is a spark to get it to start and the parts that are responsible for this are the appropriately named spark plugs. So, when you are having trouble getting your Craftsman weedwacker to start, there are quite a few things you will have to consider so that you can get to the root of the problem, which you can then solve by finding the appropriate solution.
1. Gas / Oil Fuel Stale or Improperly Mixed
One of the most common problems with a gas-powered Craftsman weedwacker or string trimmer is the fuel that it requires to run properly.
With this in mind, you should ask yourself, “When was the last time I used this powered tool?” since it could have been long enough ago that the gas/oil mixture in the tank could have gone stale.
You will also want to make sure that the mixture of gas and oil is done correctly. If you do not mix the gas and oil properly you can run the risk of using too much of one or the other, typically too much oil is used, which can result in the fuel not burning properly.
This issue is more common if you have been mixing the gas and oil by simply pouring the two directly into the fuel tank rather than mixing the two properly in a gas can.
Not only will this create a mixture that is too thick to burn correctly, but it can also affect other parts that assist in the process such as the filters.
If you use too much oil when you mix it with the gas, the oil can certainly build up and can reach a state similar to tar, which can then clog up lines and even filters in the motor and fuel lines.
This is because oil is much heavier than gasoline and it will sink down and can build up, especially in the lower parts where the filters are held in the Craftsman weedwacker.
Fix – Clean Out Fuel Tank
If you believe that the mixture of gas and oil in your Craftsman weedwacker or string trimmer is either stale or you may have not blended it correctly, you will want to clean out the fuel tank.
Ironically, you will want to use some gas to clean the fuel tank along with a nut to knock around in the tank and loosen up some build-ups. You will also need a gas can and a small cup.
You can start by pouring a small amount of gas into the small cup. Before you add any gas to the fuel tank, you will likely have to remove some fuel lines to access a decent pour spot.
You will also want to make sure that any lines you have on the fuel tank are connected to each other so that when you are shaking and cleaning the fuel tank, you will not have gas spilling everywhere.
Go ahead and drop the nut inside of the fuel tank and then pour in the small amount of straight gas in the fuel tank. Now, put the cap on the fuel tank and begin shaking it around.
After shaking the fuel tank with the straight gas and nut inside, you can let it sit for a while. You can let it sit for a couple of days or a couple of hours, depending on how gunked up the fuel tank is, after it has sat for long enough; you can shake it some more.
Next, carefully remove the cap and pour out all of the gas and the nut from the fuel tank into a bowl or another safe container.
After that, you can wash out the fuel tank with some water from a hose if you think it is necessary.
If you do wash it out, you should let the tank dry for at least 24 hours. Now that you have washed out the fuel tank and let it dry, you can reattach the fuel tank to the Craftsman weedwacker and fill the tank with the appropriate gas-to-oil mixture.
2. It Could Be The Carburator
You have a clog in the carburetor if the Craftsman Weedwacker starts in idle and then stalls and the priming bulb will not fill with gas or will not pop back out after being pushed in.
The bulb’s purpose is to prime the supply line by allowing fuel to enter. As previously depicted, the fuel line within the carburetor can easily become clogged up; therefore, the fuel will not be able to flow through and burn up properly.
The carburetor is an essential part of the gas-powered Craftsman weedwacker, which means your weedwacker will not work correctly so long as the carburetor is not functioning correctly. The best you can do here is clear out the carburetor.
Fix – Remove and Clear Carburetor
The problem can be fixed by taking out the carburetor, opening the side that is only held in place by ONE screw (not the side with four tiny screws), and removing the two lines while keeping in mind how they were connected (the feeder line from the fuel tank attaches to the straight copper tube, and the tube leading to the bulb intake side attaches to the bent copper tube), and blowing out the debris obstructing the fuel flow inside the carburetor.
Press the bulb once the carburetor has been replaced, and the fuel should easily discharge.
With the carburetor cleared out, you should have no problem starting your Craftsman weedwacker.
3. Dirty Air Filter
It is quite common for Craftsman weedwacker to have issues starting and staying running when the air filter is dirty or broken. This can even cause the filter to fall out of place and then the carburetor will be taking on too much since it is not being filtered.
Sure, cleaning the filter falls into the category of basic weedwacker maintenance; however, this potential problem can go overlooked quite easily.
With that said, when you encounter issues when trying to get your Craftsman weedwacker to start, cleaning the air filter should be one of your first moves.
Fix – Clean The Air Filter
Luckily, since cleaning the air filter is considered doable by the owner of the Craftsman weedwacker or string trimmer, you can clean and replace the air filter quite easily and without professional assistance.
The very first thing you will want to do is make sure the weedwacker is turned completely off and be sure to remove the spark plug boot so there will be no spark. Next, you should be able to easily remove the plastic housing that covers the filter by loosening and removing the twist knob.
Beneath the plastic covering, you should find the air filter for your Craftsman weedwacker lining the side of the inside, which you can easily pull out.
Now that you have the air filter removed, you will need a small container, big enough to hold the air filter and fill it with some soapy warm water. You can squish the air filter around in your hands and shake off all of the tiny debris.
Next, place the air filter in the warm soapy water and squish the filter some more to push out dirt, dust, and debris. You can let the filter sit in the soapy warm water for some time but then you will want to rinse the filter out with regular clean water, then dry the air filter thoroughly with some paper towels and let it air dry for at least a couple of hours.
After you have rinsed and dried the air filter, then you can add only a couple of drops of oil to the air filter. You should use a 3-in-one lightweight oil. Do not use regular motor oil, it will be much too thick for the filter.
Work the oil through the filter by squishing it around in your hand. The oil essentially helps to catch more dust, dirt, and debris.
After you have oiled the air filter, go ahead and put the filter back into place inside the compartment on your Craftsman weedwacker, then reapply the plastic covering and tighten the screw knob.
Your Craftsman weedwacker should start and run with no problems after cleaning the air filter.
4. Does The Weedwacker Have Gas?
It may seem obvious; however, it is all too easy to forget to put gas and oil in the fuel tank before starting your Craftsman weedwacker. The gas/oil fuel mixture is essential for your Craftsman weedwacker, as it is the fuel and lubricant for the weed wacker’s motor.
Even though a gas-powered weedwacker such as your Craftsman weedwacker needs gas and oil to run, it is quite easy to forget to refill the fuel tank.
Fix – Refuel Weedwacker
It is okay if you have forgotten to refuel the fuel tank on your Craftsman weedwacker; however, without fuel, the weedwacker will not capable of starting or running. With this in mind, you will want to prepare the proper mixture of gas and oil for your Craftsman weedwacker.
Most two-cycle gas weed wackers or trimmers use a 40:1 ratio of gas to oil. It would be wise to prepare this mixture in a gas can rather than pouring both directly into the fuel tank.
So, you will want a ratio of 3.2 ounces of oil to 1 gallon of gasoline. Ideally, you should only use gas with an 87 octane percentage with no more than 10 percent alcohol.
Prepare this mixture in a gas can and it should render a fair amount that you can use over a span of time.
5. The Head is Loose
It is quite common for the head of the Craftsman weedwacker or string trimmer to become loose, even after only a couple of uses. This can certainly result in the weedwacker either not starting or struggling to do so. Fortunately, this can be fixed quite easily.
Fix – Tighten The Head
Luckily, this is quite an easy fix. Typically a Craftsman weedwacker will have one of two heads, some have reverse thread bolts and others simply have a couple of screws.
If you believe that your Craftsman weedwacker has reverse thread bolts, then you can simply turn the head counterclockwise to tighten it.
Lastly, if your Craftsman weedwacker has a couple of screws that secure the head, then you can use a screwdriver to tighten the screws.
This could be a simple solution for starting problem you are experiencing with your Craftsman weedwacker.
Weedwackers or string trimmers are great powered tools but unfortunately, they can break or falter. This means that you will want to keep up on the maintenance for your Craftsman weedwacker so that it will continue to run properly. This way you can continue to win the battle against weeds in your yard.