If your small engine is not running well, or if it isn’t even starting at all, you probably do not need to take it to a repair man. Many small engines can run rough if you have neglected the maintenance, and by simply changing a few things, and doing basic maintenance, you can save yourself a lot of money and give yourself a feeling of pride and accomplishment.
The first thing you will want to check is the spark. There are several ways to do this, involving either purchased or constructed lights that light up when the spark should ignite the fuel mix. You can also do the same task by removing the spark plug. Once you have taken the spark plug out, reconnect the wire and lay the spark plug on the metal of the engine, then try to start it. if you see a spark, the electricity is fine, if you do not, you may need to change the spark plug, or other electrical components such as the condenser.
If you establish that the spark is not the problem, you will want to check the air intake. Air intakes on small engines can get clogged easily, especially on lawn mowers, and rotor tillers where dirt and dust is commonly flying about. There is usual a black plastic cover held on by screws. Remove the screws and take off the cover. Make sure you keep the screws in a safe place. Now look at the air filter. Sometimes even pieces of grass may be clogging the air intake. Gently clean out any debris and shake out the air filter. If the air filter looks bad you will have to replace it with a new one. This will ensure your engine gets enough air into its air fuel mixture. Once you do this you will have to put it all back together and reconnect the cover.
If none of these have fixed the problem you may need to clean your carburetor, which can be done with carburetor cleaning spray.
If that still has not solved the problem you may have a blocked fuel line, remove your fuel line and inspect it for a blockage. If no blockage is present clean the line with a little carburetor cleaner, and clean the places where it connects. If it does have a blockage you can attempt to remove the blockage, or purchase a new line to replace it. Then put it all together again, and see if it runs.