The Tecumseh Corporation used to produce a number of different small engine designs, such as their vertical shaft and horizontal shaft engines, which were used in various applications ranging from lawn mowers and lawn tractors to snow blowers, log splitters, tillers and other devices. One of the most common Tecumseh engines was the 5 horsepower model, which was often seen in a horizontal shaft configuration and used for small wood chippers and other small devices such as snow blowers. The carburetor on these models was a float bowl design, meaning that a small float allows fuel to enter the main jet of the carburetor and draws more fuel into the bowl when it is needed. When working with these carburetors, you'll want to follow some basic tips.
Most of the Tecumseh float bowl carburetors use a soldered brass float instead of a cheaper plastic float you find in other manufacturer's designs. The soldered brass float typically will last a long time, but it can develop pinhole leaks over time and absorb gasoline into the float bowl itself. If this happens, the carburetor will no longer operate properly and you will need to replace the float.
The Rubber Ball Primer
The rubber primer bulb is replaceable, but it is held in place with a snap ring and can be difficult to remove. Typically, you will need to service it only if the rubber is cracked or broken from age, or if exposure to cleaning chemicals has distended the rubber and removed its flexibility. Be careful with cleaning chemicals such as acetone based carburetor cleaner, because contact with these can destroy the rubber primer bulb, leading to more involved repairs becoming necessary.
Throttle Spring and Arm
The 5 horsepower Tecumseh carburetor is governed, meaning that it has a throttle spring and arm that are attached to a mechanical governor operated by the crankshaft. The spring and arm that control this governor are precise, and if they are bent or damaged, the engine won't operate at the proper speed. Check these first if you are having problems with the carburetor or the engine idle changing unexpectedly.
There is a small air hole in the threaded area of the bolt that holds the float bowl to the carburetor body. If this is blocked or gummed shut, the carburetor will not operate properly. To prevent this, remember to clean the air hole in the bolt that holds the float bowl on.
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