2005 Toro 826 LXE won't start - Snowblower Forum : Snow Blower Forums
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post #1 of 20 Old 02-28-2015, 12:24 PM Thread Starter
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2005 Toro 826 LXE won't start

I have an '05 Toro 826 Powermax LXE. As I've posted elsewhere, it has never started well for me. It seems that when it's relatively warm (say, above 20 degrees F), it usually starts OK, but below that it fails to start quite often.

I'm tired of taking it in to get it "fixed" only to have the same thing happen the next season (or time I need it). So I'm trying to learn to fix it myself.

This morning I replaced the carburetor with a new Oregon aftermarket carb. I was able to get it going, but after letting it run for a few minutes I tried cutting the throttle and it died. I haven't been able to get it going again.

I've tried emptying the carburetor bowl to eliminate flooding and spraying in some starter fluid. I then took out the spark plug (which was replaced last week). I noticed that it was a bit wet. I'm not seeing a spark when I pull the cord, but I'm not sure I'm doing it correctly.

Any advice on how to proceed with fixing this thing would be greatly appreciated.
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post #2 of 20 Old 02-28-2015, 12:52 PM
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Hi Paul, Is that a Tecumseh HMSK80? Are you using fresh fuel? Lastly, how does it run?
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post #3 of 20 Old 02-28-2015, 12:52 PM
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To check for a spark, connect the plug wire to the plug, and you must also ground the outside of the plug against bare metal of the engine.

If the shrouds on the engine allow it, I usually rest the outside of the plug against the aluminum cylinder head, such as against the fins. Rotate the plug so you can see the gap, and pull the cord quickly. You are looking for a bright blue spark.

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post #4 of 20 Old 02-28-2015, 01:00 PM
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The best / safest way to test spark is with an adjustable gap tester...looking for a thick/blue pop when set at the "small engine" gap. Keep the plug in the block to avoid creating a combustable fuel cloud around your face. I also make sure the fuel is off and the carb bowl is dry.
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post #5 of 20 Old 02-28-2015, 02:07 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by classiccat View Post
Hi Paul, Is that a Tecumseh HMSK80? Are you using fresh fuel? Lastly, how does it run?
The engine is identified as an LH318SA. Apparently, this was called an HMSK90 prior to 2004.

I filled the tank with regular unleaded (with ethanol) that was fresh from the gas station two weeks ago.

When it runs, it runs pretty well, though I need to keep the choke partially closed and the throttle on high to keep it running even after it's been running a while.
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post #6 of 20 Old 02-28-2015, 02:12 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RedOctobyr View Post
To check for a spark, connect the plug wire to the plug, and you must also ground the outside of the plug against bare metal of the engine.

If the shrouds on the engine allow it, I usually rest the outside of the plug against the aluminum cylinder head, such as against the fins. Rotate the plug so you can see the gap, and pull the cord quickly. You are looking for a bright blue spark.
By outside of the plug, do you mean like the threads?

Unfortunately, the plug wire and shrouds do not let it be placed anywhere near anything that isn't either painted or very rusty.
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post #7 of 20 Old 02-28-2015, 02:21 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by classiccat View Post
The best / safest way to test spark is with an adjustable gap tester...looking for a thick/blue pop when set at the "small engine" gap. Keep the plug in the block to avoid creating a combustable fuel cloud around your face. I also make sure the fuel is off and the carb bowl is dry.
I don't have one of those, but it looks to be very useful. I'll pick one up and give it a try.
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post #8 of 20 Old 02-28-2015, 02:43 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Paul Ebert View Post
The engine is identified as an LH318SA. Apparently, this was called an HMSK90 prior to 2004.

I filled the tank with regular unleaded (with ethanol) that was fresh from the gas station two weeks ago.

When it runs, it runs pretty well, though I need to keep the choke partially closed and the throttle on high to keep it running even after it's been running a while.
So we have fresh fuel but by your description, you have a lean condition. The easy things to check are for fuel restriction...one of the easiest checks is to see if the problem goes away when you loosen the fuel cap; the cap-vent may be restricted.

Is it an emission / non-adjustable carb...if so, replacement for a snow-king / winter engine?


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post #9 of 20 Old 02-28-2015, 02:48 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Paul Ebert View Post
By outside of the plug, do you mean like the threads?

Unfortunately, the plug wire and shrouds do not let it be placed anywhere near anything that isn't either painted or very rusty.
Yes, the threads, or the little arm of the electrode.

I have tried using an alligator clip wire, from a cooling fin, to the plug, in a pinch.

The adjustable gap checkers, sound cool, I was not aware of those, thanks classiccat. I have a cheap Harbor Freight tester, it lights up when there is a spark. But it's pretty much on or off; the adjustable ones could give you a relative sense of the ignition's power, based on how big a gap it could cross.

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post #10 of 20 Old 02-28-2015, 04:01 PM Thread Starter
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I loosened the gas cap and was able to start it, so that might be at least part of the problem. That would sure be an easy fix.

I let it run a while and I was able to reduce the throttle some, but the more I did the more it surged. The carb does not have the adjustment screw on the bottom (neither the original or the aftermarket replacement). I'm pretty sure the original carb did not surge so badly, but then I was not able to keep it running on the original carb unless it was full throttle.
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