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Forum topic by LoyalAppleGeek posted 11-16-2017 11:11 PM 329 views 0 times favorited 9 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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LoyalAppleGeek

160 posts in 733 days


11-16-2017 11:11 PM

Topic tags/keywords: chain saw start question problem fix repair poulan mill harvest

Hello everyone!

I’m not sure how woodworkerish this question is, but as someone who uses rough lumber I consider my chainsaw an extremely aggressive and inaccurate table saw… It’s what much of my wood goes through before coming into the shop.

It’s a Poulan P3314WSA. It had been sitting for about a year after the last season of firewood stocking I used it for. The chain brake broke near the end. I replaced that this year along with the purge bulb that had cracked when I tried starting it after replacing the purge bulb I shelved it and one of the most insane years kept me from using it.

Just today I finally went out to fire it up, it would start, then die, start, then die, and the purge bulb was incredibly hard to depress. Right away I realized I likely reversed the fuel lines when reattaching them to the new bulb. Sure enough I opened it up and that was the case. I corrected it, tried starting it, and now it’s completely dead. The system purges fine, but it’s as if I’m empty of fuel. There’s no response to attempted starts at all. The rip cord is easy to pull and the turnover sounds normal, but I’m much more a builder than a mechanic.

I know many on this site use chainsaws, for harvesting material, firewood, or rough milling, so if any of you are better at small engine repair than me (which wouldn’t be too difficult) I’d really appreciate a word of advice!

Thank you all, and Happy Thanksgiving!


9 replies so far

View MrUnix's profile

MrUnix

6006 posts in 2037 days


#1 posted 11-16-2017 11:24 PM

Sounds like like you left it stored with gas in it? If so, then the carb is most likely gummed up and/or the fuel lines and fuel filter have gone bad. You could try to clean out the carb if the gaskets and diaphragm are still good – but leaving gas in it probably toasted them. You could get a rebuild kit and replace them if you want. However, for a few bucks more, you can buy a new carb kit, complete with a brand new carb, new fuel lines, filters (gas and air), spark plug, primer bulb, gaskets if any, etc… You can find them on Amazon for around $20 for the whole kit. I just went through this with my 20 year old Poulan Wild Thing. Total cost was $18, and with a new bar and chain (long overdue!), now runs and cuts just as good as when I bought in 1997.

Cheers,
Brad

-- Brad in FL - In Dog I trust... everything else is questionable

View LoyalAppleGeek's profile

LoyalAppleGeek

160 posts in 733 days


#2 posted 11-17-2017 12:03 AM

Thanks for the info Brad! It would seem that’s likely the issue then. The one thing I’m still perplexed by is why the engine would start and run for a short time when the primer bulb was installed backwards. I’ll looked into those repair kits you mentioned and they sure are affordable. Thanks a bunch for directing me to them!

View sawdustdad's profile

sawdustdad

335 posts in 723 days


#3 posted 11-17-2017 04:08 AM



Thanks for the info Brad! It would seem that s likely the issue then. The one thing I m still perplexed by is why the engine would start and run for a short time when the primer bulb was installed backwards. I ll looked into those repair kits you mentioned and they sure are affordable. Thanks a bunch for directing me to them!

- LoyalAppleGeek

Maybe there was some fuel still in the carb?

-- Murphy's Carpentry Corollary #3: Half of all boards cut to a specific length will be too short.

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MrUnix

6006 posts in 2037 days


#4 posted 11-17-2017 05:16 AM

he one thing I’m still perplexed by is why the engine would start and run for a short time when the primer bulb was installed backwards.

Could have been any number of different reasons. My guess was that it was actually squirting a bit of fuel into the carb when you had it hooked up backwards.

The way the primer bulb works is a bit non-intuitive. The route the fuel takes is:

Fuel Tank—-> carb —-> primer bulb —-> back to tank

Most people think it pushes fuel into the carb, when it is actually pulling fuel through it. You can run the saw without it, although it may take a few extra pulls to get it started when cold. But the fact that it won’t run when hooked up properly points to a problem with the carb as mentioned, and not really related to the primer bulb.

Cheers,
Brad

-- Brad in FL - In Dog I trust... everything else is questionable

View Redoak49's profile

Redoak49

2903 posts in 1827 days


#5 posted 11-17-2017 12:18 PM

No doubt that small engines can be a pain. I completely empty tank and run them dry every year.

View chrisstef's profile

chrisstef

17030 posts in 2845 days


#6 posted 11-17-2017 01:59 PM

Have you tried replacing the fuel filter? Most of the time when our demo saws at work wont fire replacing the fuel filter in the tank clears the issue right up.

-- Its not a crack, its a casting imperfection.

View Markmh1's profile

Markmh1

62 posts in 281 days


#7 posted 11-17-2017 03:16 PM

When my small engines get bucky, I check to make sure they’re not flooded. When I have the plug out, I do the smell test to see if there’s gas. If there’s no gas, I’ll pour a few drops in the carb as sort of a prime. Usually at that point, the engine will fire, maybe not run.

Now I’ll use a screwdriver to close the carb adjustments all the way, carefully counting the turns. Immediately, I’ll open the adjustment back up the number of turns it took to close it. If there’s any gunk or varnish in the line, this usually moves it so I get fuel running through.
Now a quick re-prime, and usually it will fire and maybe run a little. I keep priming the carb and getting it to run until the debris is flushed through.

One of my chainsaws is so old it doesn’t have a primer bulb. With this method I can get this one going and put it to work. Redoak is correct with running them dry before storage. That cures a lot of evils.

Mark

View tomsteve's profile

tomsteve

667 posts in 1057 days


#8 posted 11-17-2017 09:00 PM

“I’d really appreciate a word of advice!”
i wouldnt spend too much time and money on a $100 saw.

View Markmh1's profile

Markmh1

62 posts in 281 days


#9 posted 11-17-2017 10:57 PM

You know, a $100 saw is only that, but at least it should run ‘til it breaks.

Gunk, varnish, clogs effect expensive saws too.

Mark

What about sulfur reducing bacteria?

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