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How to Unclog a Lawn Mower Fuel Line

Prepping your lawn mower for spring is not a daunting task. In fact it should be part of a routine maintenance schedule. Most modern lawn mowers have a fuel filter that is in line with the carburetor. The job of the filter is to remove any debris before the gasoline enters the engine. More often than not, the fuel filter will become clogged during the mowing season. Unclogging the fuel line and replacing the filter is a task that will take approximately 15 minutes.

Remove the rubber sparkplug wire from the engine's sparkplug. The sparkplug generally resides on the rear of the engine that faces the push handles on the lawnmower.

Pull the fuel tank’s filling cap. Tip the mower on its side. Drain the fuel into the gasoline container.

Identify the rubber fuel line that runs from the bottom of the gas tank and into the engine’s carburetor. Use the pliers, and pinch the metal spring clamp together at the small metal ears. Move the spring clamp up the hose approximately 2 inches. Perform this at both ends of the fuel line hose. Remove the fuel line from the engine.

Drain any excess fuel from the line and filter into the gasoline container.

Remove the old fuel filter from the rubber hose in the same method as described in step 3.

Straighten the wire coat hanger using the pair of pliers. It may take some effort, but make the entire length of the coat hanger as straight as possible.

Run the end of the coat hanger through the rubber fuel line to clean out any debris lodged inside the hose. Blow compressed air, as an option, through the hose to remove any lodged material that the wire may have left behind.

Install the new fuel filter into the rubber fuel line. Pay attention to the direction arrow printed on the fuel filter case. The arrow must be pointed towards the carburetor for the fuel to flow properly.

Replace the clean fuel line back onto the lawnmower engine in the reverse order as described above.


Do not dispose of old gasoline down sewers or home drains. Follow all local disposal regulations when disposing of gasoline or motor oils.


Never expose gasoline fumes to open flames. The result can be highly explosive.

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