Launch Slideshow

Do-it-yourself carburetor cleaning

Do-it-yourself carburetor cleaning

  • Fuel left inside an engine for longer than 30 days begins gumming up, forming a varnish-like material that clogs up the small jets and ports in the carburetor. To clean the bowl, use carb cleaner and scrape out the varnish.

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    Fuel left inside an engine for longer than 30 days begins gumming up, forming a varnish-like material that clogs up the small jets and ports in the carburetor. To clean the bowl, use carb cleaner and scrape out the varnish.

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    Subaru Industrial Power Equipment

    Fuel left inside an engine for longer than 30 days begins gumming up, forming a varnish-like material that clogs up the small jets and ports in the carburetor. To clean the bowl, use carb cleaner and scrape out the varnish.
  • When cleaning the carburetor, first drain the carburetor bowl by removing the drain screw.

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    When cleaning the carburetor, first drain the carburetor bowl by removing the drain screw.

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    Subaru Industrial Power Equipment

    When cleaning the carburetor, first drain the carburetor bowl by removing the drain screw.
  • Often its easier to completely remove the carburetor for cleaning. Start by removing the choke lever. Unlatch the governor link and the tensioning spring with needle nose pliers.

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    Often its easier to completely remove the carburetor for cleaning. Start by removing the choke lever. Unlatch the governor link and the tensioning spring with needle nose pliers.

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    Subaru Industrial Power Equipment

    Often it’s easier to completely remove the carburetor for cleaning. Start by removing the choke lever. Unlatch the governor link and the tensioning spring with needle nose pliers.
  • Check the gasket on the inside of the air filter assembly to be sure its in good shape.

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    Check the gasket on the inside of the air filter assembly to be sure its in good shape.

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    Subarua Industrial Power Equipment

    Check the gasket on the inside of the air filter assembly to be sure it’s in good shape.
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    Check the gasket on the inside of the air filter assembly to be sure it’s in good shape.

  • Remove the hinge pin from the float. With the float comes the needle, which should be cleaned.

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    Remove the hinge pin from the float. With the float comes the needle, which should be cleaned.

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    Subaru Indstrial Power Equipment

    Remove the hinge pin from the float. With the float comes the needle, which should be cleaned.
  • After lifting the float, the main jet in the carburetor is visible. The jets passage is where fuel flows through the carburetor into the combustion chambers. To inspect, remove the jet with a flat blade screwdriver.

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    After lifting the float, the main jet in the carburetor is visible. The jets passage is where fuel flows through the carburetor into the combustion chambers. To inspect, remove the jet with a flat blade screwdriver.

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    Subaru Industrial Power Equipment

    After lifting the float, the main jet in the carburetor is visible. The jet’s passage is where fuel flows through the carburetor into the combustion chambers. To inspect, remove the jet with a flat blade screwdriver.
  • To open the passage of the jet, spray carb cleaner on it and use one bristle of a wire brush to insert and clear out any particles or gummed fuel. Be careful not to make it any larger than its original size.

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    To open the passage of the jet, spray carb cleaner on it and use one bristle of a wire brush to insert and clear out any particles or gummed fuel. Be careful not to make it any larger than its original size.

    600

    Subaru Industrial Power Equipment

    To open the passage of the jet, spray carb cleaner on it and use one bristle of a wire brush to insert and clear out any particles or gummed fuel. Be careful not to make it any larger than its original size.
  • The limit cap is part of the tamper-proof system required by the EPA. It is a non-serviceable part, so handle it with extra care.

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    The limit cap is part of the tamper-proof system required by the EPA. It is a non-serviceable part, so handle it with extra care.

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    Subaru Industrial Power Equipment

    The limit cap is part of the tamper-proof system required by the EPA. It is a non-serviceable part, so handle it with extra care.
  • Clean the main nozzle passage until its free of grime. Be sure the holes on the sides are open and clean as well.

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    Clean the main nozzle passage until its free of grime. Be sure the holes on the sides are open and clean as well.

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    Subaru Industrial Power Equipment

    Clean the main nozzle passage until it’s free of grime. Be sure the holes on the sides are open and clean as well.
  • Check to see the gasket (either flat or O-ring) that seals the carburetor bowl to the carburetor body is in position and not torn or warped.

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    Check to see the gasket (either flat or O-ring) that seals the carburetor bowl to the carburetor body is in position and not torn or warped.

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    Subaru Industrial Power Equipment

    Check to see the gasket (either flat or O-ring) that seals the carburetor bowl to the carburetor body is in position and not torn or warped.

Eight steps to cleaning a carburetor

Step 1: Remove the spark plug cap so the engine doesn’t fire during maintenance. Then turn the fuel valve to the off position.

Step 2: Some manufacturers incorporate carburetor drain screws in their engine designs. If this is the case with your engine, simply drain the carburetor bowl by removing the drain screw, which is positioned on the outside of the unit. Once gas is drained, take off the bowl by removing the screw that attaches the bowl to the bottom of the carburetor.

After the carburetor bowl is drained into a container, evaluate the fuel condition. Note whether you see rust, dirt, or corrosion. Generally, if your engine has fallen victim to old gasoline, varnish from stagnant fuel will stick to the bottom of the carburetor bowl.

Step 3: If the carburetor bowl has varnish residue in it, spray the inside with carburetor cleaner and wipe it clean. If the material within the carburetor bowl is still in a liquid state, simply wipe it dry.

Step 4: The main jet’s passage is where fuel flows through the carburetor into the combustion chambers. To inspect the passage, remove the jet with a flathead screwdriver. Be sure you have some sort of pan to catch it.

Step 5: To service the jet and open the passage, spray carburetor cleaner on it and clear out any particles or gummed fuel by passing a wire brush bristle through it. Be careful not to make the passage any larger than its original size.

Step 6: Remove all material that could come loose and clog up the jet again by spraying the rest of the carburetor components with carburetor cleaner, making sure to catch overspray from the cleaner with a rag.

Step 7: The idle jet, which might need service, is at the top of the carburetor. Some idle jets will unscrew on top. Others are pressed in or might be plastic with O-rings to seal them. To clean the idle jet, pass a wire-brush bristle through it to be sure the opening is completely clear.

Step 8: Reassemble by placing the main jet back into the carburetor stem with a screwdriver. Make sure it is snug but don’t overtighten. Check to see the gasket (either flat or O-ring) that seals the carburetor bowl to the carburetor body is in position, not torn or warped. Tighten the screw and washer that holds the carburetor bowl to the carburetor body. Do not overtighten and make sure there is no fuel around the carb bowl.